Examples of Literary Text Analysis


23 Mar 2015 15 Dec 2017

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The written word can spark so much in a person. It can bring a person to have a great imagination, transform a person into a hero, villain, anything that person wants to be. The written word can take a person to any part of the world without even leaving the comfort of your home. The written word breaks through cultural barriers, gives a person other perspectives. The written word can also be used to terry down those bridges people try to climb over to get to the other side. The written word is like an artist without an actual painting. The writer takes a person into the future as well as into the past and back into the present. William Blake, put the art of imagination into eloquent words, "This world is a world of imagination and vision. But to eyes of the man of Imagination, Nature is Imagination itself. As a man is, So he sees." (DiYanni, 2007 page 2200) Emotions transpire throughout each piece of work an author has written. Repeated elements in action, gesture, dialogue, description, as well as shifts in direction, focus, time, place. The journey begins with a well known author Cathy Song and her poem Lost Sister.

Lost Sister by Cathy Song and the Bible the Prodigal Son

This story starts in a culture and identity-envisioning narrative. "In China, even peasants named their first daughters Jade-the stone that in the far fields could moisten the dry season." (Cathy Song, (DiYanni, 2007 pp 1188) in the beginning of this story, a father in China, has a daughter and is proud to name her Jade. This is setting the tone from the attitude toward the daughter with love and admiration from a father that is poor and works for a living. The story gives the illusion of maybe the timeframe is placed in an ancient town where there could be different social groups. Known is when the writer says, "even the peasants." The narrator goes on to explain the setting metaphor (could make men move mountains for the healing green of the inner hills glistening like slices of winter melon) - Figurative Language, metaphorically the narrator is speaking of the stone jade and what it means to men, and how they will attain this precious stone. Structuralism and Social Criticism is applied when the narrator goes into what was expected of a daughter given the historical period. (And the daughters were grateful: They never left home. To move freely was a luxury stolen from them at birth. Pp 1189) Feminist Criticism In this line the interpretation is that the women are restricted to what they are allowed to do and not allowed to do. The narrator changes the daughter's attitude from being grateful into feeling trapped and helpless for being a young girl that is born into this life. (Instead, they gather patience; learning to walk in shoes the size of teacups, without breaking-the arc of their movements as dormant as rooted willow, as redundant as the farmyard hens. Pp 1189)

Lost Sister by Cathy Song and the Bible the Prodigal Son

This gives the reader the since that the daughter does not look forward to what she does day in and day out. In these lines, she is wishing she could go away somewhere better. The poem goes on mentioning a sister; however, this sister is on the other side of the ocean. (There is a sister across the ocean, who relinquished her name, diluting jade green with the blue of the Pacific. Pp 1189) this sister apparently did not like the restrictions put on her way of life so she did something about her situation and left China. In comparison the in Acts the New Testament, the author Luke, The Prodigal son, did not like where he lived and so took upon himself to go to another country. (DiYanni, 2007, Pp 27). This poem uses Flashback and Symbols (You find you need China: your one fragile identification, a jade link handcuffed to your wrist. You remember your mother who walked for centuries, footless― and like her, you have left no footprints, but only because there is an ocean in between, the unremitting space of your rebellion.) (DiYanni, 2007, Pp 1190). Both sisters have a conscience of an inner conflict one sister desires to please her family by staying in China, Acts the New Testament, the author Luke, Just like the oldest son in The Prodigal Son, "Now the elder son was in the field, and as he came and drew nigh to the house, he heard music and dancing. In addition, the son said to the father; "Lo, these many years do I serve, neither transgressed also obeyed what you have command." (DiYanni, 2007, Pp 27). The sister in America flashing back and is regretting leaving her life in China, she is finding out freedom is not so free and this life is not what she probably had imagined.

Girl by Jamaica Kincaid and Alice Walker in Everyday Use

The similarities of these stories are the relationships that mothers and daughters have with each other. In the Girl by Jamaica Kincaid, it starts with a mother giving instructions on how the wash is supposed to be done. (Wash the white clothes on Monday and put them on the stone heap; wash the color clothes on Tuesday and put them on the clothesline to dry.) (DiYanni, 2007, Pp 397) There is no introduction of the characters, no action, and no traditional plotline. In the story of "Everyday Use" by Alice Walker, this story has a similar theme, a mother with two daughters narrates this story and how she interacts with each daughter. In similarities both stories are Anthropological each story gives a history behind the story. In "Everyday Use" Mrs. Johnson, starts out describing how her relationship is with her eldest daughter. Then the mother goes on telling about the day when Dee, the daughter came home from college. (DiYanni, 2007, Pp 743) Both stories give an allusion to where the setting takes place. Girl, by Kincaid, the setting took place in their house, during the instruction on how to keep the house clean. (This is how you sweep a corner; this is how sweep a whole house; this is how you sweep a yard; (DiYanni, 2007, Pp 398)In Walker's story "Everyday Use" The daughters have different view points on how they see their identities and on how they view their heritage. The conflict is over some heirloom quilts. The story Girl by Jamaica Kincaid continues with other instructions on how to become a Young woman should act like. (don't walk barhead in the hot sun; cook pumpkin fritters in very hot sweet oil; soak your little clothes right after you take them off.) (DiYanni, 2007, Pp 397) These values are passed on to their daughters which are frequently heard by mothers throughout the story especially in Jamaica Kincaid's story of

Girl by Jamaica Kincaid and Alice Walker in Everyday Use

"Girl" commands to help prevent her daughter from becoming a slut. "the slut that she is so bent on becoming."(DiYann, 2007, Pp 397) There is not much difference in a cultural relationship between mothers and daughters in the past to the present day. The mother wants to pass on the necessary cultural and moral practices and values that she was taught by her mother. In both points of view, the narrator is speaking in the first person. In Girl by Jamaica Kincaid, the mother is referring to herself as "I" for example; "the slut I know you are so bent on becoming" and "the slut I have warned you against becoming." (DiYanni, 2007, Pp 397) Mrs. Johnson, an uneducated woman, tells the story herself. Mrs. Johnson said, "I never had an education myself." (DiYanni, 2007, Pp 745) The church raised money to help send Dee to school in Augusta, GA. (DiYanni, 2007, Pp 744). The stories both depict a social and economic view on how life was. Girl by Jamaica Kincaid showed the economy by how she brought to attention in pp 397; "don't sing benna in Sunday school; you mustn't speak to wharf-rat boys, not even to give directions." Critics appreciate the quality of how Kincaid and Walker represented the image of how mother and daughters bond and how powerful one person can effect one's life. The reader learns a particularly relationship operates in a colonial culture and in the deep south of Georgia. Both writers use the observation of life to validate their experiences in their own life. Both writers used this technique to authenticate oppressed group of people: lower class, black women. This is point of view is also shared with the oppressing of a group of people by the poem by Langston Hughes; Dream Deferred and Woody Guthrie's poem This Land Is Your Land.

This Land Is Your Land by Woody Guthrie and Dream Deferred by Langston Hughes

"This land is your land, this land is my land, From California to the New York island; from the redwood forest, to the Gulf Stream waters This land was made for you and me." (DiYanni, 2007, Pp 897) Woody Guthrie, started his poem out with a patriotic song that sets the tone for being proud of one's country. Compared to Hughes poem Dream Deferred, he starts questioning the American dream. "What happens to a dream deferred?" (DiYanni, 2007, Pp 896) Gathrie, goes on in his poem stating; "As I walking the ribbon of highway I saw above me the endless skyway: I saw below me that golden valley: This land was made for you and me." This stanza is pointing out that dreams and possiblities are possible. Nevertheless, in Hughes poem the question is not having the dream but points out that the narrator has the dream but because of cirumstances that is not knowing to the reader he goes on asking, "Does it dry up like a rasien in the sun?" (DiYanni, 2007, Pp 897) Or fester like a sore-and then run?" This part of the poem in ones's opioin is asking if he should put the dream aside for awhile but then it becomes to strong of a desire to make this dream come true it may just come out despite the obscales in the way. On the contrary, in Guthrie's poem "I've roamed and rambled and I followed my footsteps To the sparkling sands of her diamond deserts; And all around me a voice was sounding: This land was made for you and me. When the sun came shining, and I was strolling, And the wheat fields waving and dust clouds rolling, As fog was lifting voice was chanting: This land was made for you and me. As I went walking, I saw a sign there, And on the sign it said "No Trespassing." Here the narrator roams the United States however there are parts in the

This Land Is Your Land by Woody Guthrie and Dream Deferred by Langston Hughes

United States those are not free to roam. Guthrie, a radical, was inspired to write the song as an answer to Irving Berlin's popular "God Bless America," which he thought failed to recognize that it was the "people" to whom America belonged. The words to "This Land Is Your Land" reflect Guthrie's assumption that patriotism, support for the underdog, and class struggle were all of a piece. In this song, Guthrie celebrates America's natural beauty and bounty, but criticizes the country for its failure to share its riches. Reflected in the poem least-known verse: "In the shadow of the steeple I saw my people, By the relief office I seen my people; As they stood hungry, I stood there asking Is this land made for you and me." (DiYanni, 2007, Pp 898) Woody Guthrie, This was material deliberately created to promote the war effort, expressing the passionate fervor of left-wing resistance to fascism. The poem Dream Deferred by Langston Hughes and the poem This Land is Your Land by Woody Guthrie, is clearly a supporter of the American culture to have change in how America views freedom for all. Langston Hughes poem Dream Deferred is expressing the same theme as Woody Guthrie has pointed out that words can transform a person into a hero, capture a person's since of what is right and what is wrong. The imagery that is vividly written on paper touches a person's emotions to make things right or at least reflect on how the future can be changed. Both poems have a way of being a window through the construction of the poem so one can see the reality of what message they want to get across. Using irony and figurative speech help strength each line to understand what the message was.


"Even during the 1960s, American progressives continued to seek ways to fuse their love of country with their opposition to the government's policies. The March on Washington in 1963 gathered at the Lincoln Memorial, where Martin Luther King Jr. famously quoted the words to "My Country 'Tis of Thee," repeating the phrase "Let freedom ring" 11 times." (Dreier and Flacks, 2005) This tone is set through out Hughes'and Guthrie poems and short stories and songs, seting the stage to get this message out that all men should be free to choose where they want to live and all men and women should be free to pursue their dreams without another telling them what dream they should have. Along with woody guthrie's songs that freedom should be granted not just to the people that have money. But to all that do an honesty days work and get paid equally. In all the short stories and poems that have been represented in this essay, the one thing that all of the authors have in common is their basic values, and economic and social equality to mass parcipation in politices. The desire to have free speech and civil liberties an eleminate the second-class citizenship and racial minorities.

William Blake, put the art of imagination into such eloquent words, "This world is a world of imagination and vision. But to eyes of the man of Imagination, Nature is Imagination itself. As a man is, So he sees." (DiYanni, 2007 page 2200) John Kotter wrote, "The single biggest challenge in manging change is not strategy, structure, or culture, but just getting people to change their behavior." Kotter goes on to say that People change their behaviors only when they are motivated to do so, and that happens when you speak to their feelings. These authors speak to ones feelings to motivate a person to make things right.


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