S302 The Hispanic World II Fred Jehle

Análisis individual

     As one of the basic requirements for the course, each student is to write an analysis, in Spanish, on a play written in Spanish and not read in class. You are to read the work in Spanish, preferably several times so that you understand it well and can see how the various elements of the work fit together. If you decide that you do not wish to write about the particular play you have chosen or been assigned, consult with the professor about using a different one.
     The analysis should be preferably five pages long, not counting the cover page and bibliography. It should be typed or word-processed and double-spaced form and must represent your own work. The Guía general para el lector on page 233 of your text will give you some ideas of topics to consider as you set about writing your analysis; you are encouraged to consider particularly item number seven, dealing with the theme. The temas topics given for the various plays in the text also might suggest to you ways of looking at the play in question. In most cases the plays made available to you are accompanied by materials which should give you specific ideas of how you might interpret the works; you may use those ideas as a stimulus, but are not obliged to agree with them. Please note that your paper is to be a unified work consisting of various related paragraphs; it is not to be merely a series of answers to questions.
     Your approach to the topic is not necessarily restricted to the analysis, criticism, and history of literature; one may incorporate other types of investigation, involving for example sociological or psychological aspects of the play, the relationship between it and the author's life, or perhaps a comparison between it and other arts such as architecture or music.
     You may, but are not required to, consult other critics or authorities to get additional or contrasting ideas and points of view on the subject. However, rather than being strictly a “research” paper, the analysis is expected to be “interpretive” or “subjective”, where you analyze the work as much as possible on your own; however, you must be able to support your ideas / interpretation with evidence from the text or other sources.
     A word of caution about including other people's ideas in a paper: PLAGIARISM. Plagiarism is stealing or passing off as one's own the ideas or words of another person, and is grounds for: (1) a failing grade on the term paper or the rejection of the term paper altogether, and (2) a reduction in the course grade, or a course grade of F or Incomplete. If another person's words are used, quotation marks must be put around them and credit given to the source, either in a footnote, endnote, or in the text itself. If another person's ideas are used, but phrased in the your words (i.e., you PARAPHRASE someone) you must still give credit where it is due, again with a footnote or endnote, or in the text itself.
     One way of giving credit to your sources used is footnotes or endnotes, particularly if you add other comments. However, in most cases source information can be supplied in the text itself or in parentheses after the quote or statement in question, giving for example the author's last name if necessary (which will correspond to an entry in your bibliography), and the page number(s) on which the information can be found. The bibliography will list your outside sources, including the book from which the play was taken.


     The following are criteria which I use as I read and grade papers. Note that not all criteria may apply to all papers —especially shorter papers as for this particular course— but they will at least give you an idea of things I look for.

  1. Content
    1. Introduction.
      1. Does the topic fall within the course limits?
      2. Does the writer state the purpose or problem to be investigated?
      3. How does the writer convince the reader that the paper is worth reading?
      4. Does the writer present a preview of how the problem will be handled (and expectations about the outcome)?
    2. Body.
      1. Background information (e.g., author's life, summary of the work, history of the period).
        1. Is there enough information given to familiarize the reader with the situation?
        2. Contrariwise, is too much information given here (is this just padding to take up space)?
      2. How are the writer's statements substantiated?
        1. If generalizations are made, does the writer substantiate them with sources and/or examples?
        2. Are the assumptions logical?
      3. Presentation of evidence/ideas.
        1. Are multiple sources considered, if available?
        2. Is contradictory evidence dealt with adequately?
        3. Is the material presented relevant to the purpose stated?
        4. Is the argument internally consistent, i.e., does one point follow from another?
        5. Is the argument plausible?
        6. Does the writer show that he/she is capable of original or independent thought?
      4. Suitability of the paper's focus.
        1. Is the problem chosen focused enough to be adequately covered in the space of the paper?
        2. Is the problem chosen too specific or narrow for the writer's sources of information?
        3. If there are multiple foci (e.g., structure, form, and content of a work), is there a suitable attempt to synthesize them?
      5. Is the presentation easy to follow and well organized?
      6. Does the writer deal with the problems set up in the introduction?
    3. Conclusion.
      1. Does the writer summarize findings adequately?
      2. Is the conclusion directly related to the questions asked in the introduction?
      3. Does the reader understand which conclusions are exclusively those of the writer?
  2. Connections to class.
    1. Evidence that the class materials have been read and understood.
    2. Application of lecture and discussion materials to the paper.
  3. Form.
    1. Spelling, accent marks, punctuation, and capitalization.
    2. Grammar. [Most frequent errors: a) lack of agreement between nouns and modifiers, and between subject and verb; b) wrong verb forms or tenses; c) inappropriate switching from past tense to present and back again.]
    3. Appropriate use of words. Does the writer use them incorrectly, awkwardly, or inappropriately?
    4. Paragraph form. Are ideas present in coherent order?
    5. Footnotes and bibliography. Are borrowed ideas and statements given credit? Is the form of the footnotes and bibliography understandable and consistent?
    6. Typing errors. Has the paper been proofread?

[Speaking of citing your sources... Much of this outline was taken from an issue of a newsletter-type sheet on teaching published on an irregular basis at Bloomington many years ago. Regrettably, I cannot find a copy of it to give the author credit.]

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Contact: Fred F. Jehle

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Indiana University - Purdue University Ft. Wayne

Last updated: Jan. 13, 2003

Fort Wayne, IN 46805-1499 USA

URL: http://users.ipfw.edu/jehle/courses/s407/termpap.htm