According to Encyclopedia Britannica, Feminism is, “The belief in the social, economic, and political equality of the sexes.

FEMINIST THEORY ESSAY #2: COMPARATIVE LITERATURE
In-class Essay #2 Project: upload as a Word attachment to Moodles/Blackboard
According to Encyclopedia Britannica, Feminism is, “The belief in the social, economic, and political equality of
the sexes. Although largely originating in the West, [it] is manifested worldwide and is represented by various
institutions committed to activity on the behalf of women’s rights and interests….” (“feminism”).
1
st step: Choose female character(s) from each play to compare/contrast. The plays are: Ibsen’s The Doll House
and Tracy Lett’s Bug
Choose then whether you will be focusing on the triumph, downfall, or both for your comparative lit
paper. Why is the subject experiencing a triumph/ downfall within the that particular scene/moment in time?
*You may choose to focus on ONE or BOTH for the paper; however, you MUST focus on ONE or the other for EACH
comparative paragraph(s)!
• Watch MLA Block Quote Tutorial: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OafScbp6tpg You must block all
play quotes in the body paragraphs for this comparative lit paper. You cannot BLOCK ANY THING
ELSE!
• Watch How to Cite Poetry, Song Lyrics, & Plays: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wBEwT537I38
Rules to follow:
1. You may block any quote that is
a. 50 words or more/ 4 or more lines long (use this sparingly though! Short quotes are priority)
b. Poetry format if it is 4 lines or more long
c. Play format (monologue or dialogue) is for 2+ characters, however, for this feminist paper, you can
only quote monologue (1-4 lines) from female character, not dialogue between two characters even if
the conversation is between two women! With dialogue, it is mandatory that you block regardless for
2+. You are blocking for this paper to learn the blocking format.
d. Punctuation goes BEFORE the parenthesis (the logical reason for this is that your response should
NOT be directly after; it is below the blocked quote, NOT INDENTED!
2. The Play blocked quote should
a. Be from the focal point (subject)
b. Be from the author referring directly to the focal point (subject)
c. Be monologue within this paper. Ellipses is not acceptable in a blocked play quote UNLESS it is in the
play itself; it is acceptable in prose and poetry, though!
d. contain the signal. Ex. Susan: I’ll have to check this out. (3.2.297)
3. When you are citing
a. Prose, put author’s last name unless he is also the author of the quote; you use page numbers or year.
Ex. (123) OR (2017)
b. Plays, never put author’s name; you use act, scene, and page number of the quoted
monologue/dialogue. Ex. (3.2.297) Hint: modern plays tend to have one act and/or one scene. Plays
written in blank verse (ex. Shakespeare and Sophocles) uses a different citation format because the
plays are very long!
c. Poetry, never put author’s name; you use line numbers Ex. (line 57) OR (lines 57-59) OR deleting a line
(lines 57, 59)
FEMINIST THEORY ESSAY #2: COMPARATIVE LITERATURE
2
nd step: In a 5-8** paragraph essay, please develop a thesis and argument responding to the following
question/statement:
Do the women in plays express feminist thought by showing triumph and/or downfall?* Don’t forget to develop and
support your thesis (last sentence of introduction) using at least one quote FROM EACH PLAY THREE TIMES from the
“master texts”. Quotes in the intro and conclusion besides the required theory are FORBIDDEN.
*You may choose to focus on ONE or BOTH for the paper; however, you MUST focus on ONE or the other for EACH
comparative paragraph(s)!
The feminist 3-6** body paragraphs should be structured in the following way:
I. This is standard; there are developmental 5 sections to the intro that any academic theory essay should have.
A. Topic sentence (aka. “grabbing the reader’s attention”)- say something about women with ONE
sentence.
B. Brief synopsis of the plays (2-4 sentences for each play…if you do more, you risk retelling the
Story); you should mention the author and the title of the story properly. This is where you set up the
situation. You MUST include sprinkles of opinion based on the given narrative.
1. you can first establish the basic narrative, then establish your equal or more sprinkles of opinion.
2. You can first establish the basic narrative, then establish your equal or more sprinkles of opinion in
between/amongst your narrative.
C. There are three parts to any quote in standard MLA format. You MUST prove that you understand
the standard!
QUOTE TO USE you MUST quote from the Hurley introduction where you feel exhibits your
perception on the plays (triumph and/or downfall). The quoted words CANNOT be more than 50 words!
Do not forget to format your quotes in the standard format. ALL other formats used will incur a
deduction: signal phrase, “chosen quoted passage/lines” (citation).
D. Personal response to definition (1 or more sentences) – how do the entire plays reflect triumphs and/or
downfalls for the women (just a suggestion)?
E. Create a thesis statement that covers the scope of your essay. I suggest you create your SUB-topic
sentences for the body paragraphs first, then write a thesis that covers ALL three points
WITHOUT listing the points! Also, avoid using the actual titles in your thesis!
Two Major ways you will BLOCK a quote from play in your body paragraphs ONLY:
Do not forget to BLOCK format your quotes in the standard PLAY format. ALL other formats used will
incur a deduction:
EX#1. This is the typical format directly from the focal point
Character Name from Play: chosen quoted passage/lines. (1.5.22)
EX#2. Stage directions about focal point
It is most common to find stage directions in italics, and you should replicate them:
After Levan states that Homais “faints,” the stage directions detail what happens next: She sinks
down in a Chair, he falls at her feet. (1.5.22)
If it’s not clear from context that you are quoting stage directions, indicate this in your in-text citation:
Manly’s scene concludes on a passionate image: She sinks down in a Chair, he falls at her feet
(1.5.22 [stage direction])
II. Body #1- This is standard; there are 5 developmental sections to the Body that any academic theory essay
should have.
A. Write a sentence that contains the following three ideas: 1. Subjects (a woman from each play), 2.
Synonym/comparative for triumph OR downfall, 3. Point (issue) (ONLY one sentence!)
B. establish the mini narrative (background/lead-in) of the scene for 1st play. Include major opinion(s) on this
close narrative reading.
C. Establish a BLOCKED quote from the woman (subject) from the established scene [don’t forget proper MLA
format]
D. explain how and why this quote proves your issue for the first woman (minimum of THREE analytic
sentences)
E. referential statement OR subtopic comparing the 2nd woman with the 1st
FEMINIST THEORY ESSAY #2: COMPARATIVE LITERATURE
F. establish the narrative (background/lead-in) of the scene for 2nd play. Include major opinion(s) on this close
narrative reading.
G. Establish a BLOCKED quote from the woman (subject) from the established scene [don’t forget proper MLA
format]
H. explain how and why this quote proves your issue for the 2nd woman (minimum of THREE analytic
sentences)
I. referential statements contrasting the 2nd woman with the 1st (1+ opinionated sentences)
III. Body #2- This is standard; there are developmental 5 sections to the Body that any academic theory essay
should have.
A. Write a sentence that contains the following three ideas: 1. Subjects (a woman from each play), 2.
Synonym/comparative for triumph OR downfall, 3. Point (issue) (ONLY one sentence!)
B. establish the mini narrative (background/lead-in) of the scene for 1st play. Include major opinion(s) on this
close narrative reading.
C. Establish a BLOCKED quote from the woman (subject) from the established scene [don’t forget proper MLA
format]
D. explain how and why this quote proves your issue for the first woman (minimum of THREE analytic
sentences)
E. referential statement OR subtopic comparing the 2nd woman with the 1st
F. establish the narrative (background/lead-in) of the scene for 2nd play. Include major opinion(s) on this close
narrative reading.
G. Establish a BLOCKED quote from the woman (subject) from the established scene [don’t forget proper MLA
format]
H. explain how and why this quote proves your issue for the 2nd woman (minimum of THREE analytic
sentences)
I. referential statements contrasting the 2nd woman with the 1st (1+ opinionated sentences)
IV. Body #3- This is standard; there are developmental 5 sections to the Body that any academic theory essay
should have.
A. Write a sentence that contains the following three ideas: 1. Subjects (a woman from each play), 2.
Synonym/comparative for triumph OR downfall, 3. Point (issue) (ONLY one sentence!)
B. establish the mini narrative (background/lead-in) of the scene for 1st play. Include major opinion(s) on this
close narrative reading.
C. Establish a BLOCKED quote from the woman (subject) from the established scene [don’t forget proper MLA
format]
D. explain how and why this quote proves your issue for the first woman (minimum of THREE analytic
sentences)
E. referential statement OR subtopic comparing the 2nd woman with the 1st
F. establish the narrative (background) of the scene for 2nd play. Include major opinion(s) on this close narrative
reading.
G. Establish a BLOCKED quote from the woman (subject) from the established scene [don’t forget proper MLA
format]
H. explain how and why this quote proves your issue for the 2nd woman (minimum of THREE analytic
sentences)
I. referential statements contrasting the 2nd woman with the 1st (1+ opinionated sentences)
**A scholarly writer must make a decision on whether their body paragraphs are too long for the reader to
absorb.
• For the economical writer, they will have THREE body paragraphs.
• For the comprehensive writer, they will have SIX body paragraphs
• Most undergrad scholars fall under a MIX of the above two.
FEMINIST THEORY ESSAY #2: COMPARATIVE LITERATURE
V. Conclusion – reflecting on your argument (a minimum of 5 standard sentences)
a. Topic sentence (aka. “conclusive sentence”)- it must be a critical (opinionated) statement about your
topic. Make sure it connects back to the premise of the thesis
b. revisits your initial thematic opinion- introduction topic
c. leaves the reader with thoughts on theory. You then Leave the reader with something to think about;
choose to do one or both of:
***Recommendation- give the reader or suggest that the writer or character solve a problem;
compare/contrast another piece of work or major idea with your argued master text
***Express a major opinion on another theme…answer the “why” and “how” this theme deserves
analysis
Step #3: Create a Works Cited page.
Required 5-6 Sources:
a. Ibsen, Henrik. A Doll’s House, tran. William Acher, The Grisham Press,1829.
b. Dastagir, Alia E. “A Feminist Glossary Because We Didn’t All Major in Gender Studies.” USA
Today, Maribel Perez Wadsworth/ Gannett Satellite Information Network, 21 Mar. 2018,
www.usatoday.com/story/news/2017/03/16/feminism-glossary-lexicon-language/99120600/.
c. Hurley A. Jennifer. “Introduction.” Feminism: Opposing Viewpoints. ed. Jennifer A. Hurley.
San Diego: Greenhaven Press, 2000. August, 2004.
d. Letts, Tracy. Bug, The Northwestern University Press,2006.
e. “Triumph.” Roget’s 21st Century Thesaurus.com. Philip Lief Group. 2009. 19 Oct.
2016.
f. “Downfall.” Roget’s 21st Century Thesaurus.com. Philip Lief Group. 2009. 19 Oct.

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