On Twain & Zitkala-Sa
1301 Mark Twain and Zitkala-Sa Essay Prompts
http://docsouth.unc.edu/southlit/twainold/twain.html – Mark twain
http://www.gutenberg.org/cache/epub/10376/pg10376-images.html – Zitkala-Sa
Potential essay topics. Choose one:
• Much of 19th century literature originated in the urban centers such as Boston and New York, made widely available by publishers for a national audience. How do writings by Twain and Zitkala-Sa disrupt that norm?
• Twain and Zitkala-Sa offer memoirs about their own lives which also double as social critiques of the United States. What about the United States motivates their reflections and criticism of the nation?
• Twain and Zitkala-Sa are both artful, creative story tellers and fashioners of American fables. What role did literary fiction and memoir play in the mid to late 19th century of territorial and commercial expansion?
• Surprise me. Develop your own argument using evidence from both of their writings.
10 or 12 point font
Standard written English
One inch margins
Cite with footnotes in Chicago style, not in parenthetical MLA style.
Your paper must have a main idea/thesis/argument. It cannot be a summary of the reading.
Your paper must be carefully edited. Grammar, punctuation, and spelling count. No paper will receive and A if it has more than 5 basic writing errors.
This is not a research paper; you do not need to consult anything in print or online except the readings by Twain and Zitkala-Sa. A paper that is a summary or patchwork of paraphrased secondary sources found online but that demonstrates no reading or thinking about the reading will not receive a passing grade.
Meet the format requirements
Have a strong main idea
Write clearly and edit your work
“A” papers do these three tasks strongly, “B” papers may be weak in one area, “C” papers may be weak in two areas, “D” papers may be week in all three areas.
Plagiarism: Plagiarism is the theft of words or ideas from another writer and dishonestly passing them off as your own. Any plagiarism- even a few sentences or a single paragraph- will result in an F on the paper. Do not be tempted to submit work you did not create.
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