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ENC1102 Pechter Robin Mueller: Part 1: Theme

This guide is intended to help you locate, evaluate, and use appropriate sources for your research paper assignment.

Examples of Themes

Here are just a few:


women and Islamic culture

religion and women


reverse discrimination


sexual harrassment

Their Eyes Were Watching God:

black feminism


One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest:

 conformity vs creativity



The Things They Carried:



Theme: Part 1 of your Research Paper

Choose a theme from your novel that you would like to explore. You will develop a thesis for your paper based on this theme. This portion of your paper should be two and a half to three pages in length. Use quotations and paraphrased examples taken directly from your book to support your point of view. Refer to the MLA tab for in-text citations.

Read these helpful hints to get started: Developing a Thesis (OWL at Purdue)

Developing a Thesis

A good thesis will express the idea or viewpoint that you want to convey to your reader. The body of your paper will support your interpretation with the evidence you have gathered (your sources). If you're still puzzled about how to write a literary paper, read this handout, Literature (Fiction), from UNC at Chapel Hill.

Here are other excellent sites that might be helpful.