essay about Story of the Stone（chapter 1-15）
5-6 pages (but in each case more is okay,
especially if you need more space to finish what you want to say). Please format your
essays in US Letter (not A3) size at 12 points in the Times New Roman font, doublespaced.
Topic: Examine one or more of the literary texts we have read; in addition you may of
course refer to any of the scholarly works we have read, or any other text, for that matter.
Just about any comparative, analytical or critical approach is fine; it is up to you. One
effective method is to choose one theme or issue and use it as a point of comparison
between texts, or between different chapters or sections of a longer text. In any case,
your paper needs to be built around an argument that is worth making. This
argument should not be so obvious that there is no need to go about supporting it.
(I.e., if your argument can be paraphrased by saying “these two texts are the same, except
for where they are different,” or “Genji appears to be attracted to women said to resemble
his mother,” you need a new argument.) I encourage students to come up with their own
topics, but if you decide that you would rather be assigned a topic, please let me know.
Even if I assign you a topic, it is up to you to come up with the central argument.
No additional reading or research is necessary, but it is not forbidden, either.
I do not need to agree with your arguments, I only want to see that you have thought
carefully about the materials and offered evidence to support your arguments. In fact, as
indicated above, an argument is not worth making if it is so self-evident that anyone
familiar with the material in question would likely agree with it without having to be
Avoid saying something is “interesting”; it does not constitute a sufficiently weighty
argument, and it is in fact very boring to write in a paper that something is “interesting.”
Consult the citation guidelines, etc., given in the MLA Handbook. (If you wish, you may
use another style manual such as The Chicago Manual of Style).