Instructions: Literature Review
A Literature Review is an exploratory assignment, allowing you to identify a general area of interest and to investigate the kinds of sources available with regard to that area of interest, with an eye to the Research Essay. You do not need to have an established thesis at this point; rather, you need to develop a working understanding of the research that exists (and that doesn’t exist) with regard to your interests before composing the Research Essay. We will be having a Library Research Session during class on November 2, which will be time for you to further assess which sources to include in your review.
Purpose: to survey relevant literature to determine what is known and not known about a particular topic, using the Research Essay prompt as a guide. A literature review allows you to see how your work will fit in with the ongoing conversation, and can help you refine your research question.
Length: at least 10–12 scholarly sources, across 3–4 pages, plus a separate page that is your complete Works Cited for your literature review. Formatting and citation should conform to MLA 8 standards; papers that do not meet these standards may be subject to a point deduction equal to one letter grade.