in this assignment you are to peer review two assigned papers of my classmates and to provide constructive criticism, just pointing out the issues won’t help. you have to give them something to work with, you can’t just say ” this is right” or “this is wrong”. maybe give them some are to read the two papers, going through them and give highlighted comments using word.doc, use the Comments feature of Microsoft Word to make in-text comments on the papers you were reviewing, then write up some summarizing comments at the end of the paper which tell your peer what to focus on in their revision.highlighting whatever part you are trying to tackle. and once you are through with every paragraph give an overall comment at the end of the paper. please try to write the comments and the overall comment using a different color so it can be easily distinguished.please find the papers attached below.also you will find attached below the rubric used to grade these papers, and the assignment des that the students have used to write this paper, just so you would have a better understanding on what to base your judgment on.thanks
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“The Bell Jar” by poet Sylvia Plath, is acknowledged for creating the conversation and
awareness of mental health and suicide. The novel is not only impactful because of the darkness
and heavy dialogue contained in the story, which sheds light on such an important and valuable
issue, but the novel is also impactful because of how closely it parallels Sylvia Plath’s life.
Written in 1963, Plath began her novel by introducing the main character, Esther,
participating in a summer internship in New York for Ladies’ Day magazine. Similarly, in 1953,
Plath also worked for a magazine called Mademoiselle and had won a “guest editorship.” Plath
detailed a scene in her novel which had occurred in her own life, the first day of her program
when she had eaten a bowl of caviar all on her own, which was meant for the whole table. This
detail, although small, has great significance because it reveals even the smallest aspects of the
novel are parallel to Plath’s life.
Esther, as well as Plath, both began to spiral downhill when they both are rejected from a
short story class. Esther attempts suicide by taking pills and hiding in a crawl space which
corresponds to Plath’s suicide attempt as she attempted suicide in the same way. In the novel and
as well as in Plath’s life, three days later they are found and taken to a mental hospital. Plath’s
battle with her own mental health is clearly seen to have become inspiration for writing “The
Bell Jar”.
Plath completed her first draft of the “Bell Jar” in 70 days. It was rejected by many
American publishers with comments such as disappointing and juvenile. British publisher,
William Heinman, accepted the book a month prior of Plath’s suicide. However, finding an
American publisher was a struggle. After Plath’s death, her mother blocked the publication of the
novel in the United States for eight years, claiming that it represented “the basest ingratitude” to
Plath’s loved ones, according to The New York Times. Her mother claimed that Plath had never
wanted nor intended the novel to be published in the Unites States and had written the novel for
the sole purpose of needing money.
As stated, the parallels between Plath’s life and “The Bell Jar” are evident and it is clear
that the novel stems from inspiration through real life events. Although, it is important to
distinguish that though there is inspiration and a congruency between the two, the novel is not an
autobiography. In the novel, Esther’s mother, Mrs. Greenwood, is depicted as cold, uncaring, and
does not visit Esther in the institution. Plath’s mom expressed the concern and criticism that
reads had for her as people had confused the two. Letters written by Plath, and later published as
“Letters Home”, reveal happiness, love, and joy, that Plath had for her mother.
In the “The Bell Jar”, Esther is able to receive the help and treatment needed and she
recovers. Sadly, Plath did not have the same ending. She chose to take her own life, leaving
behind two children. The novel’s ending and the way Plath’s life ended show two alternate paths
that mental illness can take you. These paths are also shown in the novel. Joan commits suicide
and Esther recovers. The unfortunate reality of the effects of mental illness are exhibited through
the death of fictional character, Joan, and also Plath. Plath’s suicide created more attention and
awareness for those struggling with mental illness. Although Plath was not able to get the help
she needed and be saved, for many, Plath paved the way for the conversation of mental health,
treatment, and suicide, and indirectly helped many individuals by creating a platform such as she
The events that occurred within “The Bell Jar” correspond to the events that occurred
within Sylvia Plath’s life. From Plath’s own experiences, inspiration was intertwined into the
themes and plot of the story. Plath as a poet and a writer has made a heavy impact through her
works, “The Bell Jar”, being one of many. The novel’s theme of mental illness conjoined with
Plath’s life story evokes thought and emotion to those who read her work and know her story.
Widely renowned for leading and creating the literary facet of Dark Romanticism, the subgenre of the ever-so-famous Romanticism movement, Edgar Allen Poe reflects a more macabre,
dramatic, and Gothic perspective in his 1845 poem, “The Raven.” Poe is known for his literary
works concerning death, murder, or the loss of life— whether that be one’s grip on life or merely
their taste for it. The common motifs and themes are widely reflected in many Dark Romantic
literary works and serve as foils to the Romantics’ affinity for the power, beauty, and prevalence of
life in all natural forms, abounding. It was under the bleak night sky of a literary movement, as well
as Poe’s own life-long struggles and calls from the darkness, that “The Raven” was created.
Dark romanticism literature came about from transcendentalism— a protest movement and
a stark divergence from any literary movement existing in the early nineteenth century, that placed
high importance and desideratum on transcending beyond the experienced physical world and
focused more on the inner machinations of the self, the apex of existence, and the hypothetical
world— and romanticism. Dark romantic authors, while connected to their Romantic counterparts,
were outcasts of society and tended to write about topics and ideas that were on the fringes of what
was normally written and often braided the fringes of what was considered taboo amongst other
authors. Romanticism, at its core, strongly reflects the more aesthetically-based life experiences that
are strongly guided by the heart and soul— because of the nature of Romanticism though, any
works falling under this genre tend to be more on the positive side, generally making light of the
organic beauty of nature and Man. In terms of antitheses, dark romanticism can be likened to the
moody punk teenager with holistic and all-natural hippie parents— both are members of
counterculture in their own rights and reflect values and motifs that are similar, including individual
expression, a fascination with physical existence, and a taste for commentary on themselves and how
they are an organic part of the world around them, but Dark Romanticism is just that: dark and
more reflective of the morose and melancholy in oneself and the natural and made-up worlds; the
shadow of the Romantics.
One of Edgar Allen Poe’s first published works was a poem called “Al Aaraaf.” Published
in 1829, Poe was only 20 years old and determined to write for the rest of his mortal life. This
poem not only is his longest, but is also one of his most positively-toned publications dealing
with the afterlife— as explained in the Qur’an and in Muslim, rather than Christian, terms—
perfect love, and perfect beauty. The whole poem is essentially about the lifelong search task
and journey of finding and achieving ideal beauty. These themes are ubiquitously Romantic,
and not only that but determinedly light and a rather stark contrast from his later works of art.
During this time, Romanticism was at the peak of its main reign in literary and artistic history, so
it seems rather fitting that this was the counter-genre that Poe wrote under. However, his
short-association with the Romantics was short-lived as he turned into the shadows of life and
Edgar Allen Poe was a very troubled man; his rather problematic life is something that most
students come into contact with at some point during their education and for good reason. It’s easy
to compare his trauma with his characters and to liken his own descent into madness, addiction,
melancholy to his art, but there is more to the picture than that. He frequented death, drugs, and
alcohol and never was able to find solace in his abandonment and loneliness; even though he was
engaged twice, neither of his lovers seemed to find a permanent state of being with him and he
incurred gambling debts and alcoholism at a very early age. He ended up writing the first modern
science fiction story, Hans Pfaal, and the first modern detective story, Murders in the Rue
Morgue,— the progression of which turned more somber as he went through his life. He openly
trashed transcendentalism (Koster 336) and ultimately turned to Dark Romanticism and Gothic
literature, the first works of which include “The Pit and the Pendulum,” “The Masque of the Red
Death,” and “The Mystery of Marie Roget–” all works that discuss death and more dark themes. It
was from these works that Poe gained more national recognition as an author and from these works
that many others began to take influence from his writing. In 1845 when Poe published “The
Raven,” he found himself at the forefront of the American Dark Romantic tradition.
The Raven clearly is a narrative poem; it has a plot that, while is elementarily easy to trace,
often misunderstood past the surface level. The poem itself is about a bird, which comes from a
direct Romantic and Dark Romantic tradition of using birds to represent illusive freedom, death,
anguish, burden, and a looming and harboring guilt. The poem is also highly reflective of the Dark
Romantic battle between good and evil, or rather, sanity and insanity relative to the narrator’s own
descent into his agony, which he finds some pleasure in reveling and walking the line between the
“desire to forget and the desire to remember;” Lenore as a figure in Poe’s own life is often
debated— she may have been Eliza Poe, Edgar’s late mother, or Virginia, who was his late wife
(Hayes 194), but Poe himself conceded that he wrote the poem completely logically and merely as an
experiment for both the mass public audience and the high literary world, so there is no definite
answer to the question of who the poem was based on (Silverman 293). Regardless of the
specificities surrounding the inspiration for the poem, “The Raven” deals with a rather grim subject
and remains at the forefront of Dark Romantic literary works, as well as Poe’s own literary works,
obviously taking influence from both the genre and the author.
Looking holistically at The Raven, it’s very simple to see the direct influence that Poe
himself, as well as Dark Romanticism, had. They both shaped the poem and made it the
ubiquitously quintessential literary and dark-romantically powerhouse we know it as today.
Works Cited
Koster, Donald Nelson. Transcendentalism in America. Twayne Publishers, 1975.
Kopley, Richard and Kevin J. Hayes. “Two verse masterworks: ‘The Raven’ and ‘Ulalume’”,
collected in The Cambridge Companion to Edgar Allan Poe, edited by Kevin J. Hayes. New York:
Cambridge University Press, 2002
Silverman, Kenneth. Edgar A. Poe: Mournful and Never-ending Remembrance. New York:
Harper Perennial, 1991.
Literary Analysis Rubric
Total possible points: 200
Mastering: A range
Above Average: B range
Developing: C range
Analysis &
Evidence: 100
total points
-Original, sophisticated, and
thorough analysis of the text
through a biographical, historical,
literary historical, cultural,
psychological, or other critical
-Contains an original and
sophisticated thesis
-Thesis is well supported with
details appropriate to the chosen
critical lens: biographical or
historical background,
psychological theories, etc.
-Sufficient evidence from the
text is related to the thesis
-All evidence is thoroughly
-Textual evidence is smoothly
incorporated into the prose
-Contains no summary of the
text except details that are
absolutely necessary for the
development of the essay
-Adequate analysis of ideas
through a biographical,
historical, literary historical,
cultural, psychological, or
other critical lens, but analysis
may lack originality or
-Contains a coherent thesis,
but it may lack originality or
-Thesis is supported with
adequate details related to the
chosen critical lens:
biographical or historical
background, psychological
theories, etc.
-Adequate evidence from the
text is related to the thesis
-Evidence from the text is
adequately explained
-Evidence is adequately
incorporated into the prose
-Contains slightly more
summary of the text than is
absolutely necessary for the
development of the essay
-Inadequate analysis of ideas
-Thesis is underdeveloped or
lacks coherence
-Inadequate support of the
thesis related to the chosen
critical lens
-Inadequate evidence from
the text is related to the
-Evidence is inadequately
-Evidence is not well
incorporated into the prose
-Contains too much
summary of the text
Below Average: D and F
-Minimal to no analysis of
-No thesis
-Minimal to no use of a
critical lens
-Little or no evidence from
the text
-Evidence is dropped into
the essay with little or no
introduction or follow-up
-Evidence is minimally or
completely unrelated to the
-Mostly summarizes the
50 total points
-Clearly distinguished
introduction (including thesis),
body, and conclusion
-Topic sentences explicitly
support the thesis and clearly
outline each body paragraph
-Transitions explicitly
demonstrate the relationship
between ideas and supporting
-Logical progression of
supporting points
-Meets required word count
-Introduction (including
thesis), body, and conclusion
-Topic sentences mostly
support the thesis and outline
each body paragraph
-Transitions mostly
demonstrate the relationship
between ideas and supporting
-Mostly logical progression of
supporting points
-Slightly below required word
-Inadequate distinction
between introduction, body,
and conclusion
-Topic sentences
inadequately support the
thesis and inadequately
outline each body paragraph
-Transitions inadequately
demonstrate the relationship
between ideas and
supporting points
-Supporting points
somewhat logical
-Significantly below required
word count
Citations &
20 total points
-Thorough compliance with
MLA standards, including Works
Cited page, in-text citations,
heading, etc.
-In-text citations consistently and
correctly used with examples
from the text
-Consistent compliance with
required assignment format:
Times New Roman or
Garamond, 12 pt. font, doublespaced, 1” margins
30 total points
-Correct grammar and
-Excellent word choice and
-Varied sentence structure
-Mostly thorough compliance
with MLA standards,
including Works Cited page,
in-text citations, heading, etc.
-In-text citations used mostly
consistently and correctly
with examples from the text
-Mostly consistent
compliance with required
assignment format: Times
New Roman or Garamond,
12 pt. font, double-spaced, 1”
-Mostly correct grammar and
-Appropriate word choice,
vocabulary, and sentence
-Inconsistent compliance
with MLA standards,
including Works Cited page,
in-text citations, heading, etc.
-In-text citations
inconsistently and somewhat
incorrectly used with
examples from the text
-Inconsistent compliance
with required assignment
format: Times New Roman,
12 pt. font, double-spaced,
1” margins
-Considerable grammar and
punctuation errors
-Somewhat inappropriate
word choice, vocabulary, and
sentence structure
-Little or no distinction
between introduction,
body, and conclusion
-Topic sentences either not
present or they do not
support the thesis and
outline each body
-Transitions either not
present or do not
demonstrate the
relationship between ideas
and supporting points
-Supporting points not
logically organized
-Far below required word
-Minimal to no compliance
with MLA standards,
including Works Cited
page, in-text citations,
heading, etc.
-In-text citations minimally
or not used with examples
from the text
-Minimal or no compliance
with required assignment
format: Times New Roman
or Garamond, 12 pt. font,
double-spaced, 1” margins
-Consistent grammar and
punctuation errors
-Completely inappropriate
word choice, vocabulary
Literary Analysis Assignment
First draft due: Sunday, Nov. 24 at 11:59pm
Note that this is an extension from the syllabus due date.
Final draft due: Tuesday, Dec. 10 at 5pm
The Assignment
The culminating assignment for the semester is the literary analysis, which will require you to think
critically about any of the text(s) we’ve read for the course, to make an argument based on your
interpretations and ideas, and to support your claims with evidence from that text (i.e., quotations
pulled from the text, not just allusions to the text). You should pick a critical approach to give a
useful perspective for thinking and writing critically. For instance, you may analyze a text in terms of
the author’s context (biographical criticism) or in terms of historical context (historical criticism) or
in terms of a cultural context (cultural criticism). Because the course theme is mental health, many of
you may want to focus on psychological approaches, as we have elaborated upon in class. There are
other approaches, too, which you may approve in conversation with me.
For any of these approaches—biographical, historical, cultural, psychological, etc.—you will have to
depend on at least one outside source to contextualize your argument. For example, if you’re writing
on The Bell Jar, this could be a biography of Plath, a history of the Rosenberg trials, or a guide to
trauma theory. These source(s) should be cited just like the literary text.
Samples of biographical, historical, and psychological criticism are available for download under the
Assignments section for this particular assignment on Canvas. Ideally, these samples would be
undergraduate work from this same course; however, as this is my first time teaching this particular
course, I don’t have samples to give you. In lieu of that, and with great hesitation, I am providing
samples of my own very early work from my senior year of undergrad and my early years of graduate
school, as well as one published article that employs biographical criticism. I hesitate because these
pieces are much longer than those you will be writing, and they sometimes refer to other critics,
which you do not have to do. Additionally, asking students to read my own work is generally not
something I am comfortable doing—yet most of this work is so early that I don’t feel too much
shame in that. More details about these samples are available under the Assignments section on
Another reminder on theses: Remember that the most common practice is to write one’s way into
one’s thesis, not to have it all worked out ahead of time. Like in a science experiment, you may well
have a hypothesis that your writing process leads you to “prove” or “disprove.” If you write your
way into your thesis at the end of your paper, like so many of us tend to do, you then need to revise
your paper to bring this thesis to the forefront and then re-organize the rest of your essay around it.
Yes, this takes more work! Yes, it’s also necessary!
The Revision Process
Speaking of revision: you will be writing two drafts of this paper. Only your final draft will be
scored; however, you will be penalized for not turning in a full first draft. That is, your first draft
must meet the word count and read as a complete essay.
You will be responsible for peer reviewing two of your classmates’ papers, and this part of the
process factors into your grade. I will assign the groups and post them on Canvas as an
announcement on the Thursday before first drafts are due. After uploading your paper to the
Assignments section by Nov. 24, you are to send it as an attachment in Canvas to your two peers
and provide feedback for them using the Comments feature (and the Track Changes feature, if you
so desire) of Word. …
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