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Review of Literary Analysis Essay

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Updated: Jan 16th, 2022

Introduction

Literary criticism presented in these four essays is both intriguing and pleasurable to read. The critical analysis highlights the important plot details, emphasizes literary elements which a casual reader may miss, and provides a deeper and philosophical understanding on these short stories. The analysis of The Yellow Wallpaper focuses on the feminist perspective, underlining various symbolisms, social subtexts, and emotional tensions that the story is meant to relay to the reader in the context of feminine literature, protagonists, and writers attempting to establish authority in the late nineteenth century (Gilbert and Gubar, p. 906). The criticism of Lahiri’s Interpreter of Maladies is a very direct and honest commentary regarding cultural differences and social understandings in the context of cultural appropriation and remnants of historical hegemony, as the writer explores whether the malady in human relations has a basis in race (Lewis, p. 925).

Main body

The story and analysis which were personally appealing was about What We Talk About When We Talk About Love. It is a common topic of conversation in society and among couples, which inevitably starts as a lighthearted discussion between Mel and Terri, but transitions into a deeply philosophical discussion reflecting Plato’s Symposium. However, it is a theme so relatable but also out of reach of comprehension for most, as the critic highlights in a quotation from the story, “it ought to make us feel ashamed when we talk like we know what we’re talking about when we talk about love” (Saltzman, p. 983). This analysis has the literary qualities of summarizing and relaying the deep meaning and emotions present between individuals when discussing the concept of love. By reading the criticism, one is able to logically follow the pattern of thought while glancing into the thoughts of each of the characters.

It takes significant skill to do this competently, condensing the plot of the story, emphasizing key emotions and meanings, all while offering essential commentary or personal perspectives. Charters herself offers insights about how to approach such analysis. Particularly interesting is the section of narrowing ideas to a thesis highlighting the elements of topic and theme, and how an excellent thesis demonstrates a concrete subject followed by a clear predicate, allowing to establish and develop thought in a structured manner (Charters, p. 1076). It is vital to use such instruction in combination with examples from experienced critics to gain a better understanding of this subgenre of literature.

Works Cited

  1. Charters, Ann. The Story and Its Writer: An Introduction to Short Fiction. Compact ninth ed, Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2015.
  2. Gilbert, Sandra, and Susan Gubar. “A Feminist Reading of Gilman’s ‘The Yellow Wallpaper’.” The Story and Its Writer: An Introduction to Short Fiction. Compact ninth ed. Ed. Ann Charters. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2015. 904-906. Print.
  3. Lewis, Simon. “Lahiri’s ‘Interpreter of Maladies’.” The Story and Its Writer: An Introduction to Short Fiction. Compact ninth ed. Ed. Ann Charters. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2015. 922-925. Print.
  4. Saltzman, Arthur M. “A Reading of ‘What We Talk About When We Talk About Love’.” The Story and Its Writer: An Introduction to Short Fiction. Compact ninth ed. Ed. Ann Charters. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2015. 982-984. Print.
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IvyPanda. 2022. "Review of Literary Analysis." January 16, 2022. https://ivypanda.com/essays/review-of-literary-analysis/.

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