Your final grade for the quarter will be the revision of your Paradise Lost essay. We will work on these revisions in class Thursday, Monday, and Tuesday (December 12, 16, and 17). Depending on how much work your current draft requires, you may also need to do some work outside of class.
Before Class on Thursday, December 12:
Everyone should begin by reviewing their section of Book 10 before class on Thursday. Additionally, if I gave you feedback on your essay that suggests you need to be more aware of what happens other places in the poem (because it would strengthen your argument OR because you are arguing against what Milton does other places), review those sections of the poem as well. Your original assignment sheet for the explication includes a brief summary of what happens in book 10.
If you haven’t looked at the assignment sheet in awhile, you might also review that. It contains high-level information, like what your thesis should consist of, as well as final editing information, like how to correctly format quotations, citations, and the title of the poem.
You might also consider composing an initial paragraph of reaction to my feedback, where you outline your plan of attack for your revision that you can then refer back to when you compose your cover letter.
If I gave you feedback that you need to revise your thesis statement, whether that is to make it more specific to your section, to include the nuance that Milton did not intend to portray Satan as a sympathetic hero, to move it from the end of your essay to the start, or some other guidance, you must start your revision there. All of you have feedback specific to the draft you wrote and I expect you to consider the argument level feedback (generally in the final comment on your essay, but also present in any of the longer comments I made) before you trouble with the sentence level feedback.
For most of you, I am looking for progress on your thesis statement and how you argue your thesis in your essay as well as how you handle quotations from the text. Most of you did a good job making claims and using quotations to support the claims, but could spend much more time explaining how the quotations you include further your argument. Any time you are using a quotation to move plot description along, you are missing an opportunity to use it to describe how Milton is constructing his portrayal of events and characters.
You likely have feedback that is specific to issues in your essay, be sure that you read through the carefully consider all the feedback I have written on your document. You may decide not to take some of my feedback, but that should be a conscious decision you make as a writer in control of their own text, and not out of neglect.
The Cover Letter:
All revisions will be submitted with a cover letter. The cover letter is worth as much to your final grade as your revision of your essay. In the cover letter, you need to communicate to me the process of your revision, including how you addressed issues I identified and issues you identified. A revision is not error correction, and I am looking for you to be an engaged and reflective reviser of your writing.
I am not expecting perfection in your final essay, what I am looking for is engagement in the revision process and movement from the draft you submitted in November and the draft you submit on December 17. Your cover letter is where you communicate your struggles, questions, successes, and progress between drafts. A vague and unreflective cover letter suggests an unreflective writer. I would recommend saving the bulk of Tuesday, December 17 for composing your cover letter. Your tone may be more informal in the cover letter, but I expect your writing to be clear, direct, specific, and grammatical.
Include your cover letter at the top of your revised essay and submit your revision as a new googledoc with file name: lastname classperiod revision (for example linder1revision). Share this googledoc with mslinder.uni by the end of your class period on Tuesday, December 17.
If you have lost your copy of Book X, here is an online version.