5. Essay Style and Format

See this page with Japanese pop-up notes (翻訳)

1. Use present tense verbs to discuss the poem, including the speaker’s thoughts and actions.

In the poem, Hughes asks, “What happens to a dream deferred?” (l. 1)

Miniver Cheevey loves the things of the past.

2. Use past tense verbs to discuss history.

Muriel Rukeyser’s “Poem” was published in 1968.

3. Use quotation “marks” for titles of poems and italics for titles of books:

Carl Sandburg’s “Killers” was published in his book Chicago Poems (1916).

4. Try different forms for your title:

The Theme of Interracial Love in Claude McKay’s “The Barrier”

Sylvia Plath’s Revision of the Cinderella Story

“Pressed to the wall, dying, but fighting back!”: Claude McKay’s Message of Courage in “If We Must Die”

Pound’s Use of Imagist Techniques in “The River-Merchant’s Wife”

5. Quoting from Sources: You can quote briefly from critical sources online or from books and essays that you find in your research. Put “quotation marks” around copied words. Introduce the quotation with a special phrase:

According to Helen Vender, Stevens’ poems usually contain “harsh and unpalatable experiences [that are] revealed only gradually through his intense stylization” (Vendler)

You can add words in [square brackets] to help make your quotation fit smoothly into your sentence. Make sure to include your citation at the end in (brackets). Full details should be included in your Works Cited page.

6. When to Quote from Sources: You should quote critical sources to support your views. For example, a point made in an online essay about the poem can be used to support your argument. You can also use a critical sources for purpose of disagreeing. Such quotations can be written in the introduction briefly or in the body of the essay.

Your thesis statement should never be a quotation from a source.

Avoid many long quotations in your essay.

7. Plagiarism is using ideas or copying words directly from sources without citation. Essays with plagiarized material will receive 0 (and a failing grade in the course).