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Word Count: 210
The purpose of a literary analysis essay is to carefully examine and sometimes evaluate a work of literature or an aspect of a work of literature As with any analysis this requires you to break the subject down into its component parts Examining the different elements of a piece of literature is not an end in itself but rather a process to help you better appreciate and understand the work of literature as a whole For instance an analysis of a poem might deal with the different types of images in a poem or with the relationship between the form and content of the work If you were to analyze discuss and explain a play you might analyze the relationship between a subplot and the main plot or you might analyze the character flaw of the tragic hero by tracing how it is revealed through the acts of the play Analyzing a short story might include identifying a particular theme like the difficulty of making the transition from adolescence to adulthood and showing how the writer suggests that theme through the point of view from which the story is told or you might also explain how the main characters attitude toward women is revealed through his dialogue andor actions
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