Slave narratives of Frederick Douglass and Harriet Jacobs

For this required assignment, you will write a five-page essay (excluding the Works Cited page) that analyzes how an author uses different elements of writing (plot, character, point of view, setting, symbols, tone and style) to convey a central theme or meaning in a piece of writing. You will compose an essay that demonstrates your ability to apply literary terms, concepts, devices and characteristics in critiquing a story, body of poems, essay, or autobiography/narrative by an African-American writer. Visit Wikipedia and other web-based sources or the library to find summaries of authors and writings of interest.

Identify and apply literary terms, concepts, devices and characteristics in short stories, poetry, and drama.
Apply appropriate literary criticism (perspectives) for effective literary analysis.
Use evidence from literary texts and secondary texts to compose original and insightful literary analysis.
Pose questions and analyze themes that reflect the human condition, such as alienation, identity, double-consciousness, racism, classism, rebellion, revolt, and escape.

Analyze how literature reflects human values and thus has relevance to today’s world.
Write analytically about literary works, using appropriate research and documentation.
Identify and discuss characteristics of different periods of African American literature, from multiple perspectives and in various cultural, historical, and literary contexts to determine the place of African American literature within the canons of American literature.
Communicate effectively an understanding of the literature and exchange ideas with others.
The primary purpose of this assignment is to present a persuasive argument on the writing(s) you chose to critique. In other words, your job is to persuade your audience to read or revisit your chosen subject. Therefore, your essay should present a clear thesis, i.e., a debatable claim about your topic supported by strong evidence.