Project #80115 - Essay

Select one passage from “Barn Burning” and use close reading analysis to demonstrate how this passage supports a clear thesis argument.



Since coming up with a viable thesis, have provided the following prompt to help focus your argument:


At two points in Faulkner’s “Barn Burning,” Abner Snopes is brought before a Justice of the Peace. The first time, Mr. Harris accuses Abner of burning down his barn. The Justice of the Peace doesn’t find Abner guilty of the arson but nonetheless exiles Abner: “This case is closed. I can’t find against you, Snopes, but I can give you advice. Leave this county and don’t come back to it” (Faulkner 182). The second time, Major de Spain, Abner’s new employer, desires restitution for the rug that Abner tracked manure on and subsequently ruined by cleaning it too harshly. The Justice of the Peace finds Abner guilty, but lessens the amount of corn Abner must turn over to de Spain to make up for the loss of the rug: The judge says: “I’m going to find against you, Mr. Snopes, I’m going to find that you were responsible for the injury to Major de Spain’s rug and hold you liable for it. But twenty bushels of corn seems a little high for a man in your circumstances to have to pay. Major de Spain claims it cost a hundred dollars. October corn will be worth about fifty cents. I figure that if Major de Spain can stand a ninety-five dollar loss on something he paid cash for, you can stand a five-dollar loss you haven’t earned yet. I hold you in damages to Major de Spain to the amount of ten bushels of corn over and above your contract with him” (191).


Choose one of these two scenes and consider whether or not the Justice of the Peace has made a fair ruling and delivered a fair sentence. In short, has justice been served? Avoid unsupported opinion and vague speculation; you will support your argument by making direct reference to the text and by close reading one passage from the text. Consider the evidence the Justice hears for and against Abner; consider the Justice’s rationale for his decision; consider if the punishment fits the crime, especially given the Snopes’ limited options and resources. 


Important Components of Your Essay


·         Thesis: Make sure you have a clear thesis, which makes an argument (not a summary) about the text. In coming up with your thesis statement, consider these questions: While the judgment (and penalty) placed on Abner by the Justice of the Peace is based on a legal principle of fairness, is the judgment fair according to other measures of justice? For example, is it a “fair” judgment, given the Snopes’ limited economic resources and social marginalization?

  • Textual Evidence: Make sure to support your argument with evidence from the text—that is, quotes from the text and descriptions of important details (images, gestures, symbols, etc.) from the text.
  • Analysis: Make sure to close read that evidence, and tie your reading into your thesis argument.
  • Organization:


Minimum Expectations for Structuring the Essay


Paragraph 1:

  • A specific introduction that leads up to a clear thesis statement (offering an argument, with a point of view, instead of a summary), and ends in a strong transition to your next paragraph


Paragraph 2:

  • A clear topic sentence forecasting your next paragraph, one argument that supports your thesis, textual evidence supporting your argument, and close reading of that evidence


Paper Requirements


·         Paper must be a minimum of 500 words in length, not including the heading/title and the works cited page

·         Paper must have an interesting and original title

·         Paper must offer a clear argument (not just a summary)

·         Paper must provide close reading analysis of at least one passage from the primary text

·         Paper must include a works cited page


·         Paper must be typed, double-spaced, written in 12-point Times or Times New Roman font, and formatted according to standard MLA styl

I will provide the material for this paper.

********* I addition this essay has to have No Plagiarism *********

Subject English
Due By (Pacific Time) 08/31/2015 12:00 am
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