English 3200
Second Analytical Essay assignment:
Due November 19

Directions:   Select a poem from our text that is not on our reading list, or another poem from another source, and write a brief (4-5 page) analytical paper interpreting the poem.  Linda Wagner-Martin's essay on "The Yellow Wallpaper," though on a story, will serve as a good model for you.  While you may include biographical and/or historical information that seems appropriate, your primary objective is to demonstrate how an element in the poem(point of view, tone, figures of speech, etc.) or a set of closely related elements involves a careful reader in the process of revealing the poem's meaning, or, to put it another way, what the experience of reading the poem reveals to an engaged reader.

If you prefer, you may write about a play not on our reading list.

You paper must be typed, double-spaced, with one inch margins, in MLA format.

The following criteria apply to all English courses:


Note: A passing grade on any assignment first assumes competence in the mechanics of standard written English. 

C         To earn a “C,” a student must


B         To earn a “B,” a student must meet the minimum requirements for a “C” essay plus


A         To earn an “A,” a student must meet the minimum requirements for a “B” essay plus:

·        Provide a sophisticated thesis that demonstrates independent thinking.

·        Support all claims/ideas with appropriate, fully analyzed examples and compelling, insightful arguments.

·        Show persuasive logical development and organization throughout.

·        Maintain a distinctive voice and consistent viewpoint that incorporates interesting and varied style.

·        Provide secondary sources, where applicable, that demonstrate independent research in the field.

·        Enter into meaningful dialogue with secondary sources, such that the student is not just proving someone else’s point but developing original ideas in relation to research material.  


D         A “D” grade results from

·        Failing to respond clearly to the assignment, or

·        A lack of qualities listed under the minimum requirements for a “C,” or

·        Insufficient control of standard written English, resulting in substantial errors that cause confusion or incoherence.


F          An “F” grade results from

·        Two or more of the faults listed in “D” above.