ENG 104 SUNY OCC The Sure Thing by American Playwright Essay

The Course Student Learning Outcomes:

1. Demonstrate an awareness of and respond to the needs of different audiences, rhetorical situations, and genres of academic writing (Rhetorical Knowledge)

2. Explore how literature reveals and deepens our understanding of the human experience (Critical Thinking, Reading, and Writing)

3. Produce coherent texts through a multiple draft process (Processes)

4. Successfully make use of the conventions of college level academic writing, including researched writing (Knowledge of Conventions)

5. Locate and evaluate research material in electronic formats (Composing in Electronic Environments).

The Skinny:

For this assignment, you will write a three-page paper analyzing the play Sure Thing. To accomplish this, answer one of the following research questions:

How do the play’s dramatic elements connect to or comment on 1980s American culture? (This project will require some research on 1980s American culture)

How does the play employ signs that connect to deep structures about “proper” romantic love?

How does the play deconstruct the “proper” romantic relationship?

To help you find a topic for your Drama Analysis Paper, here are a few approaches that you might choose:

  1. Social Exchange Theory: you can research Social Exchange Theory and apply its ideas/concepts to the dramatic elements/details of the play.
  1. “Proper Romance”: you can research theories or ideas of what makes a “proper” romance in America (especially in the 1980s when the play was first produced) and apply the ideas/concepts to the way the play develops a proper romance by its conclusion.
  1. Deconstruction: you can research deconstruction concepts and use one or more to show how the play deconstructs the “proper romance” by showing how it is represented in the play as a limited and oppressive construction.
  1. 1980s Values: you can research 1980s views on education, interests, sexual orientations, or “yuppie” culture (or any combination of these) and show how the play connects to these views through its dramatic elements/details.
  1. Satirizing the Social Norms: you can research how satire works and apply that to analyzing the play’s dramatic elements/details.

Your paper should:

-have a clearly defined thesis that offers a unique insight into the play’s meaning by directly answering the research question.

-provide points/topic sentences.

-include a clear, purposeful introduction and conclusion.
-use concrete details from the play to support the points/topic sentences.

-focus on at least three of the elements of drama/narrative, though you are encouraged to consider more elements to help you develop your analysis.

-use appropriate sources for the paper’s assignment and research question.

-contain an organizational pattern to coherently deliver the ideas

-contain transitions that move one idea to the next smoothly.

-be formatted according to MLA guidelines.

-demonstrate clear revision between early/sketch and final graded drafts.

-reach the required page length.

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