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Published: Tuesday 29th of October 2013
Who doesn’t love watching a great monster movie? There’s nothing more exciting than watching the climatic and gruesome battle between the story’s hero and the evil enemy. The majority of all the Hollywood blockbusters in theaters today are based on this good vs. evil dynamic. But this isn’t something new.
There have been stories written in this genre for thousands of years, and one of the most famous of those is Beowulf. There is a chance that sometime during your educational journey you will be assigned to read and write an essay on this topic. If you’re used to experiencing the battles on screen, then reading an epic poem translated from Old English may require some patience.
Once you’ve mustered up enough enthusiasm to actually sit down and read the epic poem, you’ll be glad you did. Beowulf is actually a very interesting and fun story. It may not pack the same punch an action movie has, but you will enjoy it.
If you’ve read the story but still have a hard time writing an essay about it, no need to worry. We will go over some tips and examples that will make writing your paper easier. Now let’s get started!
Anytime you want to earn a passing grade for literary analysis, you will need a plan. This may sound like common sense, but you’d be surprised how many students start an essay with no focus or clear thesis in mind and just wing it. This very rarely works, and you’ll end up spending extra time rewriting it.
To help you get focused on your paper, we’ve come up with a few fresh ideas:
An epic poem is a long poem in which the hero of the story goes on a great adventure or journey and usually battles other forces including nature, man or beast. In the story of Beowulf, the hero battles a supernatural monster.
Your Beowulf essay can be about the key components in the story that makes it an epic poem:
Beowulf is often considered as one of the most important surviving works of Old English literature. It is no surprise that there have been many different interpretations done in several different styles, including graphic novels, films, video games, and plays.
If you are planning to write a compare and contrast paper about Beowulf, then you will need to use at least two different interpretations. If the length and depth of your essay are longer or deeper than normal, you may even have to use more interpretations.
To make writing a compare and contrast paper, you should first establish a few key points that you can compare to the different formats. Here are a few that might help you out:
The point of view a story is told from can make a big difference on how it is perceived. Beowulf is a poem that is narrated from a third person standpoint. Although you are told how the characters are feeling and what they are thinking, you are still reading it from an objective viewpoint.
What if the story was told from a different point of view? Would the story be the same if it were told from Grendel’s perspective or Beowulf’s perspective? How would the story change and what information would be left out if the point of view were changed?
These are interesting factors that you can examine and maybe even help you see the story in a different light. You can also write about how important the point of view is for the story-telling and how it can totally change the reader’s perception of the characters.
The theme is the recurring idea that pervades a piece of literature or work of art. Most great stories usually feature a number of themes. Beowulf also contains several different themes and trying to write on all of them can lead to a messy essay.
The best thing to do if you decide to write about a theme is to choose one that really sticks out for you and dissect it. When writing a literary analysis, it’s important that you provide enough evidence to back up your position. You can add specific examples, dialogue, and scenes that support the thesis of your essay.
If you’re having a problem deciding on which theme to write about, here are some choices:
You will often find a lot of symbolism in literature. For example, there are many objects that you’ll find in stories that represent something else. The color black often represents death or evil and fire can represent passion, pain or anger.
Beowulf also contains a lot of symbolism in the story, and this may be a good topic to write about. However, you can’t pick out every little thing and write about it, so choose a few things that are key to the story. Consider these examples: