1. Compare/contrast Mary in “Lamb to the Slaughter” to one of the women in “A Jury of Her Peers” (Minnie Foster, Mrs. Hale, or Mrs. Peters — or possibly all three), paying particular attention to theme as well as setting and/or characterization, and make an argument about justice and the role of gender.
Again, Unit 2 will cover, in detail, how to write a comparison/contrast essay. In brief, “an essay in comparison and contrast shows how two works are similar to and different from each other” (Abcarian and Klotz 57).
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For this particular essay, you must demonstrate your understanding of characterization, setting, and/or theme, which we will also cover in this unit.
Your essay must be between 750-1000 words and adhere to MLA formatting. It needs to quote directly from your chosen text(s) for support, but it should not use any secondary research.
Below are some tips to assist with your writing (**The examples do not reflect the specific topics listed in the essay prompt. It is to be used as a guide only):
1. For your thesis statement, make sure you note what your goal is in the essay. Here is a sample introduction with the thesis statement at the end:
In many texts main characters have strong personality traits that create tension within the story and often results in a tragic ending. In “The Necklace” by Guy Maupassant, Mathilde is overtaken by her desire to fit into high society through materialism only to find that her manipulation resulted in indebtedness to her greed. In “A Good Man Is Hard to Find” by Flannery O’Connor, Grandmother exercises the same manipulative ways but for different reasons and also finds herself in a situation where the end result was disastrous. Throughout each story, both the Grandmother and Mathilde exercise particular traits that result in disastrous outcomes for each character.
- Note that the first sentence is a general statement about the essays’ topic, which in this case is how the character’s are portrayed and the impact on the story
- The next two sentences are one sentence summaries of each story. Note that the titles, authors, and characters in question are mentioned.
- The last sentence is the thesis statement that tells the reader what will be compared and contrasted: the character traits of Mathilde and Grandmother.
2. For this type of essay you may either discuss it subject by subject (Mathilde first then Grandmother) or topic by topic (discuss the ways in which their manipulation manifests and the impact on the outcome. They may manifest in similar fashion only or in different ways, but the outcome is the same)
3. Conclude your analysis by giving a summary of your overall thoughts about each character and the most compelling way the two are connected.
4. Since you are writing about more than one author, you must insert the author’s last name in the in-text citation if it is not mentioned in the signal phrase. Here are two ways:
Example: According to O’Connor, Grandmother was “………………..” (10) OR The author shows that Grandmother was, “…………………..” (O’Conner 10)
A jury of her Peers
LAMB TO THE SLAUGHTER