Research and Analysis of a Short Story – Assignment Instructions

The short stories you can choose to write from are:

  1. Burroughs “The Priest They Called Him”
  2. F. Scott Fitzgerald, “Bernice Bobs Her Hair”
  3. Franz Kafka, “A Report to the Academy”
  4. Milan Kundera, “The Hitchhiking Game”
  5. David Sedaris, “Don’s Story”
  6. William Faulkner, “That Evening Sun”
  7. Percival Everett, “The Appropriation of Culture”
  8. George Saunders, “Civilwarland in Bad Decline”
Learning to locate and interact with secondary sources can be one of the most daunting and frustrating aspects of college life, but with a little practice it can also become one of the most interesting and rewarding. For this essay I would like to you pick one/two of the texts that we have read this semester and then generate a thesis statement. This thesis statement can be almost anything. It can including reading the piece through one of the critical lenses that we talked about over the course of the semester (Marxism, New Historicism, Feminism, etc), or it can be something that you would like to prove or discuss about the essay that you haven’t heard anyone else say. I will also allow you to incorporate aspects of the close reading into this assignment. Again, I would like you to use quotes from the primary text. However, this time around I would like to you also look at outside sources.
You should find at least three sources that will help you support your argument. The sources don’t necessarily have to agree with what you are arguing, but they should be helpful to you in some way. At least one of these sources should be a scholarly article (1020 pages long) dedicated to analyzing an aspect of that work. The article you choose should be published in a reputable, peerreviewed journal. You can locate an array of these articles through the MLA database, JSTOR, or Project Muse. You can access these databases through the library website: If you are using the database from home, you will need your FSUID to gain access to the system.
I will not accept articles from online (.com websites) sources unless you have cleared the source with me in advance.
I would like to you to take aspects of these outside sources and relate them to the primary text and to the argument that you are making about the primary text. This is like a close reading on steroids. I want a lot of your paper to be the result of your own thoughts, but I would like you to use the thoughts of well known scholars, and reliable sources in the process.
6 page minimum, at least 3 outside sources, one primary text
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