TITLES OF FILMS ARE WRITTEN IN ITALICS.
MAKE SURE YOUR PAPER IS WRITTEN IN 3rd PERSON, PRESENT TENSE.
In reading Cat on a Hot Tin Roof and Death of a Salesman, you will no doubt see parallels between the characters. Respond to one of the following topics.
Your essay should be 2 full pages in length, typed, 4-5 body paragraphs, and at least 6 short quotes (3 from "Cat" and 3 from "Salesman"). The "Cat" quotes should come from the book and be properly cited. The "Salesman" quotes should come from the film-- to cite, just put the word (film) in parenthesis after the quote. Follow all other proper formatting of incorporating quotes-- blend or use identifying tags. As always, use 12 point, Times New Roman font; include a header and title; 1 inch margins; all other rules of MLA format should apply.
Compare Brick and Biff as two sons, brothers, and "lost souls".
Here is a sample organization: Give an example of each comparison: What kind of sons are they? Use specific examples from the story and find quotes to support your assessment. Do the same comparing what kind of brothers they are (examples/quotes), and what are their vices (examples/quotes).
Compare Linda and Big Mama as mothers and wives.
Compare Big Daddy and Willy as fathers and husbands.
Compare Gooper and Happy as brothers and sons.
Comparison and Contrast is a simple and straightforward essay type. There are a few key elements to remember when writing this type of essay.
The first is that if your two subjects are more similar than different, then you will set up the similarities in the introduction then focus on the differences in the body paragraphs.
Example: Domino's and Pizza Hut are more similar than different: They are both fast food pizza chains with a huge market share. Therefore, I would set that up in the introduction then proceed to focus on their differences in the body paragraphs. I can do this in two ways: Either set up 3 paragraphs with 3 separate overall differences (say, topping qualities, sauce properties, and crust options). Or, I can do block paragraphs, in which I only have 2 body paragraphs and devote 1 to Domino's and 1 to Pizza Hut. If I choose this organizational option, be careful to maintain parallelism and balance-- discuss each difference in order for each (Domino's: toppings, sauce, crusts; Pizza Hut: toppings, sauce crusts).
Example: The fictional cartoon character Brainy Smurf and I are obviously (I hope) more different than similar! So, if I were comparing us, I would explain those differences quickly in the introduction then devote the body of my essay to our similarities (love of books, sometimes annoying commentary, misunderstood).
The introduction will set up your comparison and reveal your ANGLE. Remember the rules of writing: Frame/Hook, Background Information (in this case this will be a brief introduction to these characters and synopsis of the stories they are from-- you can do this in 2-3 sentences), Connection, Thesis (in this case, your thesis will be your angle of approach to the prompt).
The body paragraphs will begin with a clearly stated topic statement that reveals what ONE aspect is being compared. Then you follow that up with at least 3 examples of that one mode of comparison. End with a wrap-up/transition. Each body paragraph should contain quotes and samples/examples from the plays to prove your point-- which is expressed in the topic statement of the paragraph. In essence: Point, Defense, Importance.
Remember, it isn't just enough to state that these characters ARE similar... you have to make some overall point, an overall revelation. What can we learn from studying these characters side by side? That overall point is the "so what?" and should be clearly addressed in the conclusion of the paper.
Plays: (Act.Scene.Line or page #).
Example: Maggie famously says, "we occupy the same cage" (Williams 1.32).
To cite the film, include the director's last name and the title in parenthesis.
Example: Biff says, "I'm a dime a dozen, pop, and so are you" (Schlondorff, Death of a Salesman).
If you've already introduced the director, you do not need to keep repeating his name in the citation. You don't even need to include the full title. After the first time, if all the quotes are from the same place, just put (Salesman) in parenthesis.
You can also set up an identifying tag: In the film, Biff says, "I'm a dime a dozen, pop, and so are you".
However, if you take lines from the play and NOT the film, cite accordingly.
Miller, Arthur. Death of a Salesman. pelister.org. PDF FILE.
Then, for internal citations, cite the act # and page #.
Biff says, "I'm a dime a dozen, pop, and so are you" ( Miller 2.19).
Your Works Cited page should contain an entry for "Cat" (book) and "Salesman" (movie).
Example: Films or Movies
List films (in theaters or not yet on DVD or video) by their title. Include the name of the director, the film studio or distributor, and the release year. If relevant, list performer names after the director’s name. Use the abbreviation perf. to head the list. List film as the medium of publication. To cite a DVD or other video recording, see “Recorded Films and Movies” below.
The Usual Suspects. Dir. Bryan Singer. Perf. Kevin Spacey, Gabriel Byrne, Chazz Palminteri, Stephen Baldwin, and Benecio del Toro. Polygram, 1995.
REMEMBER: You are working with the BOOK version of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof for this paper, NOT the film version. Do NOT confuse the two!
Do not rely on generalities! Build your paper out of specifics-- quotes, scenes, examples, descriptions, etc.