1. The Classic should contain or demonstrate a universal truth or ask a universal
question. In doing so, it most likely focuses on one or more universal questions
of fundamental importance to man’s existence. Raising a universal question is
not enough. Some enlightenment must take place in either the protagonist, reader,
or both. Some learning or development must occur. Enlightenment may be the
exclusive province of the reader.
2. The Classic is held in high regard because of its literary elements, particularly
in its use of complex, relevant figurative language, which expresses ideas
contained therein. The classic should contain language which contributes to the
meaning of the work. This includes literary elements and form of narration.
3. The Classic’s protagonist demonstrates the complexity of human nature in his
growth or change, his enlightenment, or his manner of living. The protagonist
should share the stage with the plot and be one with whom readers can identify in
some significant (not always positive) way. His presentation should be
believable, thought-provoking, and invite a relationship with the reader. If
multiple protagonists are used, their lives should be distinct.
4. The Classic has a plot element with which readers can identify; its plot is
interesting, challenging, and /or “readable”. In regards to plot, it should be
unified, suspenseful, stimulating, interesting, and/or provocative in nature.
5. The Classic should lend itself in some influential way to future writers and
readers or should be set up as a standard by which other works are judged.
This is an elite quality. The Classic should lend itself to future consideration and
have “lasting power”.
Your mission, should you choose to accept it:
1. Choose a book written in the last 30 years.
2. Read it.
Due ______________
3. Chat with me about your book.
Due ______________
4. Research critical articles about your book.
Due ______________
5. Write your paper. Your assignment is to argue whether or not the novel you read
should be considered a classic. Your paper will demonstrate your mastery of
research skills, writing skills, critical analysis skills, and, of course, reading skills.
You will apply all the skills you’ve learned in your high school career. More
information about paper particulars will be handed out soon.
Rough due__________
Clean due___________