For this short response assignment, we will practicing two of the key tasks needed for the full essay assignment next week, identifying literary devices and analyzing them. It’s important to think of these two things as different; simply pointing out the existence of a metaphor or an example of personification does not equal analysis. Analyzing how it works, why the author uses it, what insights we gain from its use in the poem, etc., these are elements of analysis.
You will be choosing one of the poems we have read so far – even if you choose to go back to William Blake, you would choose either “The Lamb” or “The Tyger” but not both – and explicating it (see the video in the Tips and Tricks page for help on this). After you have read and annotated the poem, you will identify what literary devices the author is using. You may also identify the roles of Speaker and Listener if they apply.
Important Note: Make sure you are going beyond summarizing. Simply telling what happens in the poem, even if that requires a deeper reading, does not mean you are identifying devices and analyzing their function.
Same requirements as always: 1-2 pages, double-spaced, MLA formatted document. Make sure you take a minute to refresh how to cite poetry – hint: we don’t use page numbers, but another number instead.
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