New Historicism: Historical Analysis

New Historicism: New historicists acknowledge the importance of the literary text, but they also analyze the text with an eye to history. The majority of critics between 1920 and 1950 focused on a work’s historical content and based their interpretations on the interplay between the text and historical contexts. “New historicists attempt to define a period in all of its dimensions, including political, economic, social, and aesthetic concerns” (Meyer 656).


Assignment: Task For this essay:


You will address one of the readings from a historical point of view. “New historicists attempt to define a period in all of its dimensions, including political, economic, social, and aesthetic concerns”. (Meyer 656). For our purposes, you can research one of these dimensions to help you further your analysis of a text’s themes.

For example, if we were to write an essay on “Sonny’s Blues”. We would identify the “African American experience in the military”. We would use this historical note to help us understand why both of the characters (Sonny and his brother) decide to join the military. Perhaps it will lead us to a new discovery of the text. From this historical approach, we can offer a new reading of the text.


* Requirements:


– Include an effective thesis statement going beyond “stating the obvious” or summarizing history class discussion

– Demonstrate an insightful introduction, smooth transitions that guide the reader between sufficient, research-backed body paragraphs, and a compelling conclusion

– Support your opinion with examples from life and/or observations of the world. Additionally, use multiple pieces of evidence from the assigned readings as well as your own research (in-text citations), class discussions, and personal account

– Proofread. Ensure it is also relatively free of errors and utilizes coordinating and subordinating conjunctions. Make use of semicolons, and incorporate new vocabulary used correctly

– Write a final draft of 5-6 pages in length (plus works cited page). Follow the standard MLA formatting guidelines for citations, spacing, works cited, etc.

– Include at least 2 outside history sources and properly quoted and cited

– Demonstrate evidence of your stance and understanding of the topic -‘new historicism’ through critique and exploration beyond what is stated in the book and beyond ideas shared in class

– Lastly, incorporate 5 or more multi-clause sentences incorporating dependent clauses, independent clauses, relative clauses, etc.

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