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Love is a problem that literature has not exhausted and never seems to tire of describing, discussing, dissecting, and poking at with a stick (or pen).

This is an analytic exercise; therefore, your essay should include a strong, clearly worded, challenging thesis (which you will underline) that announces and frames what your paper will do and how or why it does so. Your argument should be presented in a formal essay format, and have an introduction and a conclusion. You will also want to include clearly worded topic sentences in each of the paragraphs in the body of the paper. Develop your argument by providing evidence from the text, but do not become overly descriptive or include long summaries of the work. You want to present an argument, not a book review, so avoid extensive plot summary.
You will be required to use at least one critical, peer-reviewed secondary source that you have obtained through library research (i.e., a book, a chapter in a book, or a journal article). This secondary source should be directly relevant to the development of your argument. Do not simply summarize it but, rather, integrate its argument into your own, so that it is your critical voice and not that of the secondary source that predominates. In other words, I want to hear what you have to say rather than just have you tell me what critical author X has to say about your topic.

TOPIC: Love is a problem that literature has not exhausted and never seems to tire of describing, discussing, dissecting, and poking at with a stick (or pen). Love is a source of ineffable (unsayable, indescribable) joy, pain, relief, torment, solace, comfort, suffering, and despair. Despite the tremendous body of work on it, love seems to defy language’s ability to represent adequately or fully and yet, as Jeanette Winterson argues in her novel Written On The Body, that doesn’t stop us from trying to express it or from longing to hear it expressed. Using the novel Written on the Body discuss the language of love, focusing specifically on the language used to (re)present love and the experience of love. You may choose to focus on the conventions of language, the ways in which those conventions are subverted, and/or the limits of language.

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