English exam


An academic title that names the texts and the focus of the essay
A thesis statement that explains the central point of comparison or contrast between the two texts
Use of quotations from the text to support your argument – remember to contextualize, interpret, and respond to the quotations
Typed and double-spaced in 12-pt. font
MLA 8th edition citations and Works Cited page – visit this webpage for guidance: https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/research_and_citation/mla_style/mla_formatting_and_style_guide/mla_in_text_citations_the_basics.html
Three Options (Choose One):

1) At the heart of both Ernest Hemingway’s In Our Time and William Faulkner’s As I Lay Dying is family. Explore the nature of family in these texts, including gender roles, marital fidelity, and the family structure. What ideas about the American family do we find here? How do these texts show the family dynamic changing in the modernist era?

2) Both Ernest Hemingway’s In Our Time and William Faulkner’s As I Lay Dying are notable for their experiments in narrative form – Hemingway through his short stories punctuated by vignettes he labels “chapters,” and his narrative omissions, and Faulkner through his use of interior monologues, multiple narrators, and disruptions in perspective. Explore the effects of these narrative experiments. How do these narrative techniques fit the content of the texts? What do these styles allow the authors to explore that a more standard narrative style would not? And how do these forms reflect the changing nature of society in the modernist era?

3) Death is a central theme in both Ernest Hemingway’s In Our Time and William Faulkner’s As I Lay Dying. As James H. Justus argues in his essay “Hemingway and Faulkner: Visions and Repudiation,” “Death makes life a gigantic joke, a burlesque disguised as a heroic journey. Death exposes man’s limitations” (11). Explore how death is depicted in both texts, including the use of humor and the imagery employed by both authors. What does it mean to die in these texts? How does death affect the living? And what does death expose about life?

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