Essay Setting And Example [TOP]
Whether it's an alien planet or a spooky castle on a hill, setting often plays an important role in establishing meaning in stories. An analysis of setting focuses on the role location plays in a story, such as creating mood, developing characters or serving as a symbol. You can write an effective essay on literary setting by considering the specific ways the location influences the story and using clear examples with textual evidence.
Essay Setting And Example
Determine the role setting plays in the work. Often, setting creates the story's mood, or atmosphere. In "A Good Man Is Hard to Find," Flannery O'Connor establishes an eerie mood of anticipation as the characters travel an isolated Georgia highway where a serial killer roams free. Setting can also be symbolic of a particular idea within the story. The small town in Shirley Jackson's "The Lottery," where the townspeople sacrifice one person each year to ensure a good harvest, is symbolic of their adherence to tradition and resistance to change.
You can also write about how setting affects character. In Jack London's "To Build a Fire," the subzero conditions of the Yukon advance the story by forcing him to adapt to survive. In F. Scott Fitzgerald's "The Great Gatsby," the contrasting neighborhoods of East Egg and West Egg create the novel's social class dichotomy. Setting can also serve as a story's antagonist. In Kathryn Stockett's "The Help," Jackson, Mississippi, is the antagonist, as its rigid attitudes toward race stand in the way of protagonist Skeeter's goal of writing a book about the town's African American maids.
Your thesis should clearly and specifically state the setting's role in the work and how it is established. To determine this, go back through the story and underline specific passages where the setting establishes mood, symbolism or character. Take the most important three details and formulate your thesis. A sample thesis might read, "The setting of 'The Lottery' symbolizes society's tendency to cling to tradition through the descriptions in the opening, the interactions of the townspeople and the fact that it is the story's only setting."
Your essay's body paragraphs should include topic sentences followed by an explanation of the point with textual evidence. If you were writing about "The Lottery," you might quote the details in the first paragraph for your point of how the opening introduces the setting. Then you might step back and discuss the significance of the details, tying your point back to the thesis. For example, Jackson's description of the town square enhances the setting's symbolism because it is relatively generic. It could be any small town, just as the rigid thinking of tradition can belong to any community.
The concluding paragraph reviews the elements of setting you've discussed and briefly restates how they relate to your thesis. A good conclusion doesn't merely summarize the essay but instead wraps it up in a way that gives unity to the piece and introduces something new for readers to consider. For example, the conclusion of your "Lottery" essay might discuss how even though the consequences of opposing tradition aren't always life-threatening, it is still easy to cling to certain ideas in a way that alienates people who oppose them.
Kori Morgan holds a Bachelor of Arts in professional writing and a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing and has been crafting online and print educational materials since 2006. She taught creative writing and composition at West Virginia University and the University of Akron and her fiction, poetry and essays have appeared in numerous literary journals.
With an integral setting (integral means to be a part of or important to), the time and place are important to the story. For example, a story dealing with a historical setting will have a direct impact on the plot. A story that happens in the 1800s will not have technology, so the characters will have to write a letter, ride a horse or take a carriage to visit each other; they cannot travel long distances in one day as we do now with cars, buses, and planes. This will have a direct impact on the events of the story, especially if there is distance involved.
All forms of literature will have some form of setting; even backdrop settings have an age range of the characters, which is part of time, and a location, either indoors or out, for example. Without a setting, readers and viewers cannot follow a story plot.
Environment is the physical location. It includes conditions such as the geographical properties (water, sand, mountains, etc.), the cultural and social settings (school, place of worship, community, business, museum, theatre, etc.), and weather or climate (storm, rain, sunshine, desert, mountain range, plains, etc.). Most times, environment plays a large part in the setting of any story.
Within this setting, there are usually invisible boundaries that separate the two subsystems and dictate how the two should relate and how they should not relate. There are usually unspoken rules about what the two groups should engage in. These boundaries are important since they ensure that the different groups carry out their respective activities while maintain the connection to each other.
Sometimes, boundaries may be weak and this may be seen in the way the different systems interrelate with each other. For example, a mother who constantly calls her children while at the workplace in order to instruct them to do their duties may show an over-involvement with the sibling subsystem. Another example is a husband who is always too quick to inform his mother whenever he has an argument with his wife. This is an indication of a weak boundary between the immediate family and the extended family.
Since the family system works as a unit, every component affects all the others. For example, an alcoholic family member may distort the whole family since everyone would be affected by it. They would be affected by his violence, ill health and unavailability. Therefore, they would try to cover up for his mistakes and bail him out from jail when caught due to alcohol-related issues.
Such families are referred to as a destabilizing family system. In conclusion, the boundaries, hierarchies and the structure subsystems in the family setting are important aspects to observe in order to maintain healthy relationships within the family.
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For example, you may set a goal to have built your own house by the time you are 30years. With your goals in mind always remember that you are responsible for your own life and no one can realize your goals for you. Knowing that will give you the motivation you need to give your life the best shot as you work towards your goals.
But how do authors choose the right settings for their stories, and what tactics do they use to bring them to life? Find out in this comprehensive guide to story setting, complete with definition, examples, and tips for writing a setting that readers will remember forever!
The setting of a story is a literary device that establishes when and where its plot takes place. Also known as backdrop, a story setting can be drawn from imagination or based on historic events, as well as geographical locations in the real world (such as a specific city, or the house of a character). For example, The Martian by Andy Weir is set in space, in the future.
Setting serves as the backdrop to everything that happens in a story, and often contributes significantly to its atmosphere. This is why romance novels are typically set in small, cozy towns and horror stories in isolated, unnerving places (a Transylvanian castle, a cabin in the woods). Indeed, setting can be so powerful, it may even feel like a character itself!
You can probably think of a dozen more setting examples. But just to solidify the notion, here are three particularly strong ones, along with passages to show how each author paints the setting of their story.
These relationships can take many forms. Say your main character has lived in the same town their entire life; they might have a longtime fondness for it, or they could resent and feel trapped by the setting. These kind of characterstics or desires can be established using a character development exercise, like the profile template you'll find below, which prompts you to dig deep into your character's background. Whatever you decide, make sure this nuance comes through in your narration!
Mass-media has a lot of influence on the audience in terms of the daily information for discussion. People talk about topics in the newspapers or in the radios. This is the basis for the agenda setting theory, brought forward by 1972 by Maxwell McCombs and Donald Shaw1. The mass-media determines the information that is prioritized by the public, therefore directing their interests towards a particular media.
The role of the media is to report and the people then form their opinions based on the information provided. The agenda setting theory is both advantageous and disadvantageous. The merit is that it provides people with information, while the demerit is that this information is biased. The bias is because the media chooses for the people what is more vital, based on the prominence of the reports.