The final paper will be proposed on the date listed in the syllabus. Some degree of research and exploratory writing is likely necessary in order to clarify, or even discover, the topic, before you write the paper proposal. The proposal will be returned with comments and suggestion and a notation as to whether or not it has been approved. You should not proceed with your paper until your proposal is approved. Your topic must be about a playwright we have covered this semester.
The options for papers:
1) You may focus on a particular playwright that we have covered during the semester. You will need to read at least one other play by this author and cite at least two critical sources that are not from the internet or the texts we are using in class.
2) You may compare and contrast the work of two different playwrights that we have covered this semester. This will require you to read at least one other play by each playwright and cite at least two other critical sources that are not from the internet or the texts we are using in class.
3) You may propose your own idea for a paper that includes at least one of the playwrights we have covered during the semester. You will need to read and cite at least three additional sources, not from the internet or the texts we are using in class, which may be either plays or critical sources.
You may discuss themes or symbols the author uses, the historical/political/social influences on the author's work (or the author's influences on his era), the literary techniques and innovations that made the author's work unique, etc.
You may use biography sparingly to provide context, but this is not a biography of the author.
Your papers should also discuss the visual and performative aspects of the plays that made them unique in its time and why they have become influential works of theatre.
The general internet is often a good place to begin to gain an overview of your subject matter; it is seldom a definitive resource. You may use internet sources, sparingly, for support in your papers, but the sources must clearly be reliable. The best sources are print and academic databases. The research librarians can help you here.
You should have a minimum of five sources, which may include the play we have read in class and the Brustein book. All sources must be cited and included in the bibliography in MLA format. I check sources.
The paper's format:
The paper should be five to seven pages long, word-processed in plain black text, be double-spaced, and have one inch margins. It should have an MLA header in the upper left corner (that includes the title of the paper, your name, your student ID number, and the name of the course), have page numbers and be stapled in the upper left corner. The paper must be properly cited in MLA style and have a bibliography page.
In addition to the Hacker handbook, the Sawyer library has an online guide to help you with citations and style.
The paper should begin with an introductory paragraph that outlines the purpose and argument of your paper. Your thesis should be a part of this introductory paragraph. A paper must have a thesis that is argued in the paper and not be simply biography or synopsis. This is a research paper and must include the support of outside critical sources.
Do not hand in your first draft! Write the paper with enough time to edit and revise it. I suggest you make use of the CLAS tutoring service. When assessing the paper for grading, I will take grammar, punctuation, spelling, usage and style into consideration, as well as the content. Proofread your work!
Papers that do not argue a thesis, do not use the support of critical sources, are improperly formatted, or poorly written will be graded accordingly.
See the Writing Page for further grammar and style help.
Plagiarism is not taken lightly by your professor nor the university. Cite all sources and quotes. If an idea is not yours, you must cite its source!
I check sources.
Final Paper Assignment