In your final essay exam, you will write two essay responses. One essay will be focused on readings on the syllabus post-midterm and one essay will ask you to reflect on readings on the syllabus from throughout the course. Detailed instructions regarding which authors are eligible are listed by each essay topic at the end of this prompt. BOTH ESSAY RESPONSES SHOULD BE IN ONE COMPUTER FILE FOR UPLOAD PURPOSES.

Each of the two essay responses must be a minimum of 750 words (in other words, you will have at least 1500 words total–there is no maximum length per response, but try to avoid writing a book), and it must be in conventional essay format (contain an introduction, body paragraphs, and a conclusion). While you may use some of an author’s biography to make your point, keep in mind that your discussion should include a discussion of the literary texts we read in class and not rely solely on biographical information. Any paraphrases or direct quotations of material from the texts you are using must be properly punctuated (clear use of quotation marks for direct quotations, for example) and must contain a parenthetical citation (in MLA or APA format) noting the page number of the material. There is no need for a works cited page if you’re using the assigned textbook, but if you’re using any other version of the assigned texts, you must provide a works cited page, noting full bibliographical information for your source material, with the submitted exam.

This should be entirely your own argument, and you are not allowed to use any secondary material in this exam (your textbook or the text itself is your only source).

In the first essay response, you should minimize your use of “I” unless absolutely necessary. In the second essay response, as it’s asking for personal opinion, you can use “I,” but try to use it only when necessary (in other words, don’t start every sentence with it).

I would also argue against cutting and pasting information from your discussion posts (or from a previous exam response) and using that as the core content for your essays. If you choose to do so and heavily revise that content, it can work, but some students have used it as a shortcut method for completing the exam in the past, and it tends not to work well without carefully tailoring that information to the specific question posed below.

Your completed exam will be uploaded via a link in the course shell in Canvas (found under “Modules”). The Turnitin link will allow for cut and paste uploads, but I prefer you use the upload feature to avoid the potential for lost points due to formatting errors (files formatted for Microsoft Word® [.doc/.docx], OpenOffice Text [.odt], WordPerfect® [.wpd], PostScript [.ps/.eps], HTML, Hangul Word Processor file [.hwp], Rich text format [.rtf], Plain text [.txt], Google Docs via Google Drive™, and Adobe® PDF are accepted). **If you are using an Apple product to type your paper, Pages files (from Apple’s word processing app) tend not to load right in Turnitin, so make sure you save the file as a Rich Text Format file or some other option when you go to “save” in Pages or there may be issues with my ability to access the file.**

I will grade your exams via the same Turnitin link, so you will be able to see detailed feedback there once the exam is graded. General comments and the numerical score will be available via the Canvas gradebook.

Your exam is worth 45 points (45% of your final grade) and is due no later than Noon on Saturday, October 12th. EXAMS SUBMITTED AFTER THAT DEADLINE WILL NOT BE GRADED.

Your submission will be graded based on the proper use of essay format (clear paragraphs, a clear introduction, a thesis statement, etc.), the clarity of your writing (including proper use of spelling, punctuation, and grammar), proper punctuation/citation of any source material, the strength of your argument, and your ability to use examples from the assigned texts to strongly support your argument.

You may take advantage of writing assistance via Troy’s Online Writing Center (there is a link via our course menu) to help you with composing, organizing, and polishing your work (although keep in mind that they do not provide instant feedback, so you need to submit a draft at least two to three days before the due date). I am also happy to review rough drafts as long as they are emailed to me no later than 72 hours before the due date and time (no later than Noon on Wednesday, October 9th—and they need to be a .doc, .pdf, .rtf, or other file type I can open). I will not proofread for you, but I will review the draft to tell you what kind of errors you are making (and how to fix those errors) and also highlight places in the text that might be confusing or that need more development. Also, my review of any exam draft is no guarantee of an “A” grade—I can provide guidance and feedback, but I do not know what that will look like after you’ve made the changes and cannot guarantee you’ll have everything perfectly corrected in your final submission.


Essay #1 (post-midterm reflection—this question is worth 25 points):

Eligible authors for this essay topic include readings on the syllabus by Ibsen, Tagore, She, Borges, Yeats, Rilke, Neruda, Achebe, Mahfouz, El Saadawi, Al-Shaykh, Yan, Thiep, Allende, Pamuk, and Adichie.

Many of the readings from the second half of the term deal with the idea of the future in some capacity. In some cases, the writers are speculating on the type of future humanity (broadly defined) might be facing. In some cases, characters might be reflecting on their own futures, seeing either a hopeful prospect or reflecting on what they see as a dire prediction. In some cases, the writers describe people or characters who never had the opportunity to have a future. Choosing at least one specific textual example from three different authors post-midterm, where have we seen the future discussed or explored in readings from the second half of the term? What kind of future is portrayed? What can we take away from these texts in terms of our understanding of what the future can hold? Keep in mind that you may have three similar perspectives on the future among the various texts you choose to use, or you may have three very different portrayals of the future and can then reflect on what those differences might teach us in your conclusion.

Essay #2 (comprehensive—this question is worth 20 points):

Your essay response will require three examples from different authors throughout the term.

One example must be chosen from among the readings on the syllabus by these authors: Behn, Swift, Voltaire, Bashō, Equiano, Wordsworth, Keats, Ramabai and Tolstoy.

One example must be chosen from among the readings on the syllabus by these authors: Ibsen, Tagore, She, Borges, Yeats, Rilke, Neruda, Achebe, Mahfouz, El Saadawi, Al-Shaykh, Yan, Thiep, Allende, Pamuk, and Adichie.

A third example can be of your own choosing from any of the authors that remain.

Imagine that a week or two after finishing this course, you’re in a conversation with someone who asks “why should we read literature from countries or cultures other than our own?” What is your response? Whether arguing for or against the value of world literature and literature from other cultures (because you can totally argue that it is a waste of time, as long as you support your comments, and still get a good grade in the course), keep in mind that you still need to use three specific textual examples (either as a direct quotation or a paraphrase) to support your overall point of view.

As this prompt asks for your own opinion, using “I” in this essay response is okay, but try to use it only as much as necessary (in other words, avoid starting every sentence with “I think” or “I believe” or “in my opinion”—try to vary your sentence structure).

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