English Literature Essay

There are many factors that help one decide whether an English literature essay is good or not. But to understand them, one has to comprehend what an English literature essay really is. An English literature essay can be described as a document that thoroughly reviews and judges some piece of literature or a perspective of it. In order to successfully compose an English literature essay, it is important for one to divide the overall topic into smaller and simpler points. The elements of an English literature essay also need to be understood in detail. The experts of MyEssaysHelp.com have outlined the important aspects of an English literature essay. The following article will explain these elements, as well as the factors behind writing a good English Literature Essay.

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Important Elements of Literature Essay Writing

Title

An English literature essay must have a title. The characteristics of a good article include it being detailed and properly reflecting the writer’s view concerning the specific literature piece. Nevertheless, the title of one’s essay should not be the same as the title of that piece of literature. Instead, it should be relevant to the topic that the document has to be written on. Some notable examples are:

  • Robert Browning’s Duke: A Portrayal of a Sinister Man
  • The A & P as State of Mind
  • Theme in ‘The Secret Lion’: The Struggle of Adolescence.
  • Audience

An important point that should be kept in mind while writing an academic essay is that its audience consists of not only the teachers but also the peer students, who are consigned to complete the same task. The possible difference in each of their opinions and views should be noted during the writing. The main purpose of the essay is to describe and evaluate the specific literary work according to its basic purport.

Yet stating the work again through one’s essay is not considered acceptable as the referenced content or work previously exists and its repetition is of no use. Thus, the English Literature essay should focus on explaining the piece of literature through various aspects. Also, the essay should not include plot summaries, for the audience is already familiar with them.

Structure

Thesis statement: The statement must be defined, specific and should point to the main topic that the essay revolves around. Some of the famous examples of thesis statements are mentioned below:

  • Gwendolyn Brooks’ 1960 poem describes the unique practice of the traditional poetic form of the ballad to represent the untraditional poetic subject of racism.
  • Antigone’s main characters’ fate illustrates the threats caused by unnecessary pride.
  • The imagery in Dylan Thomas’s poem ‘Fern Hill’ exposes the uncertainty of human nature.

A. Introduction

  • Similar to every kind of essay, the introduction of an English literary essay must be able to grab the attention of its audience.
  • Appropriate quotations, intriguing questions, and even short anecdotes could be used to compel the audience to stay focused on the content
  • The inclusion of some brief background information is also suitable to help make a picture in the audience’s minds
  • The position being taken by the writer throughout the essay should be obvious and clear.

The addition of these factors in an English literature essay ensures a superior introduction to the essay

B. Main Body

This part of the essay includes a minimum of three paragraphs to allow the essay content to continue perfectly. A good English Literature essay body should include the following features:

  • A precise description of the writer’s views and efficient support for their opinions.
  • References from the literary work through paraphrases, particular specifications, and direct quotations.
  • The inclusion of the topic sentence in each of the paragraphs, especially at the beginning of the essay.

C. Conclusion

The concluding paragraph of the English literature essay tends to provide a touch of completeness to it and notifies the audience about its ending. Some significant components of this paragraph are mentioned as follow:

  • Stating the thesis statement again, but in simpler words
  • A summary of the essay’s primary points
  • A suitable comment on the specific piece of literature that is being analyzed by the essay

It is also important to note that no new pint should be introduced in this part, as it is declaring the conclusion of the essay.

What Makes A Good English Literature Essay?

  • An argument
    One of the main purposes of an English literary essay is to provide a piece of evidence for their writer’s views. Through the essay, they try to prove that their view, analysis, and judgmental and interpretive evaluation is legitimate.
  • A debatable thesis statement
    An English literature essay should include a definite yet comprehensive thesis statement that effectively expresses the writer’s perspectives. A great thesis statement must be arguable regarding the presentation of these perspectives.

Some of the poor examples of thesis statements are provided below to help get a better perception of the factors that should be avoided during the writing of an English Literature Essay:

‘Shakespeare’s Hamlet is a play about a young man who seeks revenge.’

This thesis statement merely summarizes the main topic and is not arguable. It could be made better in the following way:

A better thesis would be:

‘Hamlet experiences internal conflict because he is in love with his mother.’

The above statement is clearly controversial, and thus, arguable.

The thesis argument of an English Literature Essay should be constructed in the following way:

  1. How was Hamlet in love with his mother?
  2. Why was he in love with her?
  3. What points indicate this fact throughout the play?

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A Literature essay is referred to as one that analyzes literary poems or prose. It also identifies a specific theme and depicts the theme through the writer’s perception. For an essay to be acceptable, it should be centered around the topic and of high-quality, which is not always an easy task. To provide assistance in writing an English Literature essay, MyEssaysHelp.com is available. The website is globally known for its expert services regarding academic easy writing. The people who are currently benefiting from their services belong to many countries such as the USA, the UK, Australia, Singapore, and the UAE. With the help of MyEssaysHelp.com, many students have delivered successful essays and assignments, allowing them to achieve high grades.

Model Literature Essay Structure
  • Attractive Title
  • Introduction
  • Hook
    I. Author
    II. Title
    III. Main Characters
    IV. Short Summary
    V. Thesis Statement
  • First Body Paragraph
    I. A Topic Sentence (This explains the paragraphs, the main idea behind it, and its relevance with the thesis statement.)
    II. Context for the quote (This also includes the person who said it and the event when the quote was said.)
    III. Quote from the text
    IV. Analysis of the quote (This involves the evidence proving the thesis statement.)
    V. Closing sentence (This summarizes of the whole paragraph in a few words and allows the essay to transit to the succeeding paragraph.)
  • Second Body Paragraph
    I. A Topic Sentence (This explains the paragraphs, the main idea behind it, and its relevance with the thesis statement.)
    II. Context for the quote (This also includes the person who said it and the event when the quote was said.)
    III. Quote from the text
    IV. Analysis of the quote (This involves the evidence proving the thesis statement.)
    V. Closing sentence (This summarizes of the whole paragraph in a few words and allows the essay to transit to the succeeding paragraph.)
  • Third Body Paragraph
    I. A Topic Sentence (This explains the paragraphs, the main idea behind it, and its relevance with the thesis statement.)
    II. Context for the quote (This also includes the person who said it and the event when the quote was said.)
    III. Quote from the text
    IV. Analysis of the quote (This involves the evidence proving the thesis statement.)
    V. Closing sentence (This summarizes of the whole paragraph in a few words and allows the essay to transit to the succeeding paragraph.)
  • Conclusion
    I. Summary of the essay argument
    II. Extension to the argument
    III. Importance of the content of the essay.
How to Use Textual Evidence in Literature Essay Writing?

It is important to use the textual proof carefully, as it should be presenting a connection with the English literature essay. Some proper uses of the textual evidence are mentioned below, which assist in the composition of a reliable and high-quality essay.

  • Paraphrase
    Paraphrasing can be defined as the method to write or explain someone’s words through one’s own. An example of the applications of paraphrasing in an English literature essay writing is mentioned as follows:

Original from ‘The Secret Lion’: ‘I was twelve and in junior high and something happened that we did not have a name for, but it was nonetheless like a lion, and roaring, roaring, that the biggest things to do.’

After paraphrasing: ‘The narrator states in the origin of the story the ways his life significantly changed at the age of twelve because of some uncertain events, yet neither he or his friends could properly but a name to them.’

  • Specific details
    Adding specific and precise details to an essay helps in developing the main concept of it. The following are some of such details in the developing paragraph of ‘A & P’, which is a short story written by John Updike:
  • Usual traffic
  • Fluorescent lights
  • Shoppers like ‘sheep’, ‘house slaves’ and ‘pigs’
  • Checkerboard green-and-cream rubber-tile floor
  • Neatly stacked food
  • Electric eye
  • Use of direct quotations

The appropriate usage of quoted text from other resources supports the points of an English literature essay writing, making them more understandable and persuasive. Nevertheless, it is essential to only quote the material that is relevant to one’s English literature essay.

  • In Prose:
    If adding a quoted material from prose, one should always provide the page number of the reference in their English literature essay.
  • In Poetry:
    If quoting a verse from some poem, the writer should provide the number of the cited verse in their English literature essay.
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