The purpose of this initial assessment is to
a) gauge the students’ comprehension
of the summer reading and their ability to tackle the literature of the course, and
2) consider the proficiency and eloquence of students’ academic writing to guide
future writing instruction. Toward this end, it is necessary to collect a brief but
polished writing sample.
The essay will be 15 sentences long exactly, following a
strict outline provided for you on the back, and will be worth 30 points.
Your essay should illustrate how a character from Sir Gawain and the Green
Knight reflects the social standards or stereotypes of medieval England society.
SGatGK is a text that illuminates the culture of court more than it depicts epic
battles or acts of grandeur. How does it suggest people should act in society?
What are the behaviors it prescribes to readers? What behaviors does it prohibit?
You should also explain how the character is affected by and responds to these
cultural expectations of them. In what ways does the “standardized” set of
behaviors restrict/liberate what a character can say or do? Does your chosen
character resist against the traditional norm or conform to it?
Think about what the cultural norm is and who is positively and negatively affected by it and how.
Sentence 1. Introduce the literary work and the theme/topic
2. Thesis-arguable statement that answers the prompt
3. Supporting reasons in defense of your thesis
Body Paragraphs (3 of them)
1. Claim-derived from a supporting reason
2. Contextualized, quoted, and cited evidence from the work
anything within the quotation marks is 1 sentence
Blah blah blah: “Direct quote from SGatGK. Another direct quote,” (Henderson 1).
3. Analysis explaining how evidence illustrates the claim and supports the thesis
1. Restate thesis in new words
2. Simplify how the text supports the thesis
3. Explain why the essay is important to reading/understanding the literary work.