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All this based on reading attached called: The Lesson!
Essays not directly addressing one of the themes listed will not be accepted.
In addition to the essay, please fill out the worksheet attached!
Submit your essay with the accompanying worksheet. You need not include all the material in the worksheet in your essay, but should complete it before writing the essay, and no essay submitted without the worksheet will be accepted or receive credit.
The successful essay will integrate discussion of formal elements including narration, setting, characterization, imagery, tone, and diction, though you need not name the formal elements as such in your discussion. Instead, use your discussion of the formal elements as support for your claims about the theme. We will generate illustrative examples of this practice in classwork and homework.
Please review what makes a strong thesis, the necessary elements in a paragraph of textual analysis, how correctly in integrate quotes into your writing, etc., all of which are in your textbook and available for viewing online at the Purdue Online Writing Lab www.owl.purdue.edu.
Your choices of theme: (CHOOSE ONE)
Work: One definition of “exploitation” is paying someone less than their work is worth. But who decides what work is worth? Should work feel meaningful? What makes work feel meaningful? What circumstances prevent a person from feeling that their work is meaningful? When is it OK for work to be “just a job” rather than a source of identity? Who benefits from a worker identifying closely with their work? In your chosen text, look for the tensions around work and workers, and explain whether and how the text engages with the hard questions about work and workers.
Bodies: In the false duality mind v. body, the body invariably is devalued. Bodies are mortal and messy; their needs and desires are embarrassing; the ways they are marked – as having a particular gender, race, ability – constrain a person in ways that a free-floating mind or spirit, it might seem, could escape.
In some texts, though, that devalued body comes back to bite – or shame, at the very least – the mind or minds that try to reject or break free from them. Find a text that has this mind v. body dynamic (note: sometimes the body and mind in question won’t belong to the same character) and see how the conflict between them unfolds, which “wins” (if either) and why.
Solidarity: In societies based on individualism, where we’re encouraged to see others as competition, how do unrelated people form non-familial bonds? After all, families of origin aren’t chosen; then, too, romantic relationships carry a lot of, probably too much, ideological and emotional weight. So, what other ties do we form? How? Why? How are such bonds maintained? What do these ties do for people, in practical and emotional terms, that familial and romantic relationships don’t? Are they able to help heal the wounds that individualism and a society based on competition create? Choose a text that explores such relationships, what makes them possible, and/or what makes them fragile.