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Remember, this essay is worth 40% of your grade. Please review the “Option” page with the directions depending on which of the three literary theories you have chosen. Make sure your paper meets all of the criteria listed. Also, read the rubric attached to the bottom of the page, and make sure that your paper meets all of the criteria.
I will not grade your paper until at least the morning after it is due, so I would much rather you turn it in a few hours late if you realize you are missing components, rather than read an unfinished paper.
Good luck, and feel free to send me your paper to look at if you finish on a weekday before the due date, I will do my best to skim it and offer feedback before your final grade.
Option 1: Critical Race Theory Analysis (The option I chose)
“The issue of race in Othello has only become important in modern timers. It has no real relevance in its original context.”
– Some critics believe we only focus on the issue of race because of our society’s political correctness. They argue that Shakespeare never intended racism to be one of the main issues.
– Other critics have claimed the text supports a reading that examines the issue of race and it’s crucial to the play as a whole.
1. Conduct some research regarding this topic. You can use the links provided below. If you choose to use outside research, make sure that it is from a credible organization (note most of the links below are from universities). After reviewing some of the sources below, choose 1-3 sources you intend to cite in your essay (you can also find your own sources using Google Scholar or the “Library Resources” folder on the homepage of this course).
⬜ How Did Shakespeare Think About the Issue of Race?
⬜ Shakespeare’s Attitude Toward Race
⬜ Multiculturalism in Shakespeare’s Plays
⬜ Othello and Race Relations in Elizabethan England
⬜ Othello’s Black Skin & Black Skin in Shakespeare
⬜ Othello and Blackface
⬜ American Moor
⬜ Doubt and Racism in Shakespeare’s Othello
2. Create an inquiry question that you can explore for this project. This question will serve as the prompt for your essay. The question should be open-ended enough that it allows you to develop an interesting response to it, while specific enough that it can be answered in a 4-7 page literary analysis (full pages, not including your works cited page). Use your inquiry question as the title of your paper.
Write an introductory paragraph for your literary analysis. Introductions typically follow this structure: (image submitted in control panel)
Draft your introduction in about 3-6 sentences. Ideally, your inquiry question would be towards the end of the paragraph, and you would end your paragraph with a clear answer to that question. That answer is known as the “thesis statement” and your literary analysis paper should clearly answer your inquiry question and prove your thesis statement.
4. Using evidence from the research sources in Step 1, draft the first few paragraphs of your essay. A suggested layout for these paragraphs is:
Paragraph 1: Background information on Elizabethan England and race relations; compare these to your knowledge or evidence of race relations today
Paragraph 2: Use evidence from your research to clearly establish your side (Othello is/is not about racism).
(Of course, the way you structure your essay will depend on what you intend to argue. This structure may or may not fit your ideas. Feel free to deviate from these guidelines, but if you do so, make sure your essay has a clear and logical structure.)
5. Select evidence from the text to incorporate into your essay. Be sure to cite your evidence properly using MLA in-text citations. Essays with quotations improperly cited will not be graded as this is something we have talked about over and over. If you are unsure, send me your essay draft early and I will check your citations for you so that you can revise before it is graded. Info: https://www.fenwickfriars.com/assets/1/6/Citing_Shakespeare_in_MLA_Format.pdf
6. Draft your analysis paragraphs: separate your paragraphs by the ideas presented within them, use specific text evidence from Othello to support your analysis. Ensure that you cite your evidence using MLA format. The evidence you choose is important, but your elaboration/analysis of the evidence is what is most integral to this essay so be sure to fully explain and connect your ideas.
7. Draft your final paragraph: In about 3-6 sentences, provide a clear and concise ending to your essay.
8. If you have not yet, read the rubric that will be used to grade your paper. Proofread and edit your paper in accordance with the rubric.
A final note, make sure you quote REAL Shakespeare, not translated Shakespeare. Essays without real quotations cannot be graded. This has been reiterated throughout our entire time with Othello.
(We had to do a final Paper Abstract in which we chose a question and explained how we will write essay, but feel free to change the question and way to write.)
Final paper abstract: (What i submitted) The theory that my final paper will focus on is Critical Race Theory. Critical race theory recognizes that systemic racism is part of the American life and challenges the beliefs that allow it to flourish. My essay will focus on the examination or comparison of the views of race/racism by Shakespeare to the view of race/racism by modern day society. This essay will use the sources provided in option 1 to structure and support and structure this essay. My essay will also include some quotations from “Othello” as proof or support for my arguments presented in the essay.
Please include cover page and works cited page. Also cite from Othello.