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Topic: Book Analysis

Book Analysis Outline

Layout: Each Paper should be between 1200 and 1600 words in length, approximately 2-3 double spaced pages. Please use a 12-point Times New Roman Font with one inch margins. Do NOT justify the paper. Place a simple, four line heading at the top of the pages, consisting of your name, my name, the course and section number, and the date.

After the heading, you want to identify the particular book that you used for your Book Analysis. This is important because it will also serve as your one item bibliography in this case. Use Chicago Manual of Style Endnote citation:

Peter Brown, The Cult of the Saints (University of Chicago Press, 1982)

This line should serve as your title, centered over your first paragraph. For more details on Chicago Manual of Style, see the following link:

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

Content: This is not a simple book report, and it is not a critique either. It is your job to provide a thorough analysis of your book. Focus on how the historian uses evidence to prove his or her particular thesis. An author’s thesis is a concise declaration of his or her argument. Every scholarly work has an argument. It is your first responsibility to identify and explain that argument. Your introduction should contain a description of the author’s thesis, and your conclusion should express your informed opinion of the strengths and weaknesses of that thesis. In order to arrive at an informed opinion, you will need to closely examine the author’s use of historical evidence. This evidence, whether in the form of primary source material or archaeological remnants, must be considered carefully before your conclusion.

Grammar: Although I do not place a heavy emphasis on grammar, it will be necessary to assess your ability to write a college level essay. I will dedicate one letter grade to an evaluation of grammar. If you write a well thought out essay with extremely poor grammar, the highest grade you could get would be a B. This may seem harsh, but realize that this is the maximum amount I will penalize you for grammar alone.

Quotations: It is important for you to cite and quote your author frequently throughout the course of the paper. I expect to see at least one quotation or paraphrase used in each paragraph. Whenever your author is expressing a unique or original thought that you feel is relevant to your analysis, provide a direct quotation. Paraphrase when describing detailed information from the original work. In either case, it will be necessary to use footnotes throughout the paper.[1] Because you cited the author at the beginning of your paper, you can follow a simple format for your footnotes. Simply use the author’s last name and page number.


[1]                     Brown, 57.

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