Explication Essay, English

Assignment Help:
Writing Instructions:
Choose one of the quotations/passages listed below and prepare a thorough explication essay of at least 600 words (minimum). For your exam, write the explication as a well-organized essay that is clearly written with well-polished prose, grammar, and mechanics. You must incorporate a minimum of three quotes from the essay you are explicating (not including or in addition to the quote I provide in the prompt). Essays that don’t reflect these guidelines will be marked down.

Failure to follow directions and meet the requirements for this exam will lead to a grade of no
credit, so please do make sure to follow these instructions, which include the following 3 requirements:

1. Explain the claim the critic makes in the passage (this will be the first paragraph and the
shortest section of your explication)

2. Explain what the claim contributes to other elements of the essay (this will be the second
paragraph of your explication and a bit longer than the section you write for item #1 above, but it
will also be a shorter section. Make sure you keep focus on the essay as an example of Formal
Criticism—don’t just summarize without keeping to this focus).

3. Explain how the claim is typical or characteristic of Formal Criticism (this will be the third
and fourth paragraphs of your essay and the longest and most important section of your explication essay. This is the section where you demonstrate to me your mastery of the course material, and what you write here will be what the majority of your grade is based on. Therefore, be sure to keep your focus on the assigned passage, use vocabulary from the unit, and explain how the passage (not the entire essay) specifically reflects the characteristics of the critical methodology.

For your explication essay, don’t simply relate the passage generally to the characteristics of the particular critical methodology it represents. You need to keep focused on the text that the passage is taken from. Your response should demonstrate both your mastery of the general ideas that the particular theoretical approach engages and an excellent understanding of how the passage is an example of the critical methodology.

Formatting Instructions:
Write the number of the specific quotation that you are explicating for your exam response. Make sure that you single-space your exam essay text.
For full credit, count the number of words in your Explication Essay and write the total on a separate line in bold font at the end of the explication. Exams with no word count (or with inaccurate word count) will be marked down.


Quotations/Passages for Explication
2. This, then, is the sense in which knowing more, that is, putting back into the work what has been kept out of it, is to end up with less—with a work whose meaning has been made too local, whose controlled emphasis has been removed, and which has been given a kind of specificity that it should not have. To do all this is to have forced the text to function in a limited situation in the life of one individual, instead of in the life of the community. This is all nothing less than the
demolition of a literary structure.” (John Ellis, “The Relevant Context of a Literary Text”)

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