A close reading of the work will focus in on specific literary elements that are used to define a symbolic meaning within the work. These literary devices include, but are not limited to, specific aspects within the plot, mood, tone, themes, style, and historical context, characterization, distinguishing components that define the genre, imagery, themes, and motifs. When writing about the plot, you can focus on suspense in the plot, how the characters contribute to the plot, and use this information to solve a specific problem within the plot. What could the characters have done to change the ending, or the circumstances? How do their roles define this interpretation of the plot from your point of view? When analyzing characterization, you can discuss what literary elements used in the work captures the traits of the epic hero. What defines the protagonist within the context of the genre and the historical elements within the plot? How does the work compare and contrast to another in the genre? Compare and contrast works that are similar, yet differ in certain ways. When analyzing the imagery in the text, focus on symbolic metaphors, allegories, personifications, and similes that contribute to defining an original interpretation of the plot. When analyzing the story based on themes, look for specific patterns in the plot, as well as the stylistic devices that the author uses to define the tone and mood in the language they use to define an interpretation of the work. Since there are countless interpretations, the goal for the assignment is for you to find your own interpretation. For a textual analysis, you will need to have your own original claims that argue a point you are making with specific quotes from the work that supports your interpretation. You will only need the source or sources that are used for the close reading.
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