In a Tortoiseshell: Madelyn Broome’s “The Language of Monstrosity” argues that in film adaptations of Mary Shelley’s classic Frankenstein, the creature’s lack of language leads to a lack of depth in audiences’ emotional responses to the creature’s misfortunes. This excerpt highlights the author’s use of her key term “human” not just as a familiar tool with which to support her argument, but as a mechanism for creating motive.
In a Tortoiseshell: In this junior paper on Love & Friendship, a film adaptation of Lady Susan by Jane Austen, Megan Laubach’s motive is multi-faceted. Her introduction begins with in-text motive as Megan notices that Love & Friendship, despite being narrative in form, feels like an authentic adaptation of a novella written as a collection of letters. Then, Megan situates her in-text motive in a larger scholarly debate within film criticism about narration, leapfrogging from scholar to scholar in order to both disagree with them and insert her own voice into the conversation: this is scholarly motive. Taken together, Megan’s introduction is an excellent example of how to motivate a larger research paper topic on the orders of both primary and secondary sources.
In a Tortoiseshell: In this essay on the character of Mr. Collins in Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, Heather Newman crafts the intriguing argument that Austen’s portrayal of Mr. Collins’s stupidity conveys sinister underpinnings that are commonly overlooked by readers. In order to prove her argument, Heather utilizes abundant evidence and accompanies that evidence with insightful analysis that directly ties back to the overall argument.
In a Tortoiseshell: This excerpt from Victoria Gruenberg’s essay, “Cast List,” concerns the layers of performance in Hamlet and the implications for both the performers and the audience when experiencing the show. Because the essay deftly situates the complicated audience-performer relationships in the play and considers the broader questions Hamlet asks of metatheater, we believe this essay demonstrates the characteristics of a strong conclusion. Continue reading
In a Tortoiseshell: This excerpt comes from an English paper that analyzes “the differences between contemplation and action, or…the intellectual life and the physical” in the epic poem The Faerie Queen through a close reading of three passages. It is particularly strong on in its masterful use of evidence and textual analysis. Continue reading
In a Tortoiseshell: A seminal work of English literature, Geoffrey Chaucer’s “The Canterbury Tales” are difficult to decipher, but in this excerpt, the author demonstrates an excellent use of his evidence in making Chaucer’s general prologue accessible to the modern reader. Continue reading
In a Tortoiseshell: In this series of excerpts, the author’s process of developing a thesis is foregrounded. Excerpts 1 and 2 are taken from the introduction and conclusion of the original essay submitted to us, and Excerpt 3 is a revised introduction. Each excerpt includes the essay’s thesis, and as the author reiterates it his argument becomes more and more refined, improving significantly over the course of writing and revision. Continue reading