Writing questions

You need to come up with some authoritative research on a particular literary text and the time in which it was produced and write a response to that issue. I expect this paper to be scholarly and professional. You must research and use at least two critical articles about the text and/or the relevant time period as secondary or interpretive sources to help interpret the text (The most useful databases to search will be Project Muse, JSTOR, ProQuest, and EBSCO. Make sure you select “Peer-reviewed” or “Journal” or “Article” when you search these databases so that you can ensure the articles are scholarly and not just summaries or overviews.) Your written response should also be scholarly in tone and subject matter with proper MLA formatting and documentation. I expect this to be college-level research and writing. If you don’t know how to do this, please contact me. Many of you have had dual-credit or community college credit for your freshman English courses, but you may have not had the proper exposure to authoritative and scholarly writing in a college library, so please make sure you talk to me if you’re having problems envisioning this assignment. Also, please make sure that you show how the text might relate to two other readings we’ve done this semester. So, if you’re talking about slavery and “Benito Cereno,” you might mention De Las Casas’ account of how the Spanish treated the slaves, and you might mention what Frederick Douglass says about the moral damage slavery does to the master. Or, if you wanted to talk about “The Contrast” and ideals of romance, you might mention connections with Hawthorne’s “The Birthmark,” and Emily Dickinson’s “Wild Nights” or “I’m Nobody.” These don’t need to be extended connections, but I would like to see how you incorporate some of what you’ve read into your ideas.
Option A:
What I’m looking for:
6 pages of critical analysis of “Benito Cereno”
proper evaluation of critical sources and their relation to the short story
2-3 critical sources about “Benito Cereno” and/or the cultural context of the 1850s with 4-6 in-text citations of those sources (summarize, paraphrase, quote)
close analysis of the specific words, phrases, and types of language the author uses to produce an overall effect
an ability to relate the story to its time and place by referring to 2 other texts from our readings this semester
proper in-text citation, documentation, and formatting in MLA style.
Paper prompt:Written in 1855, just five years before the Civil War, “Benito Cereno” was published in Putnam’s Monthly Magazine and read widely by Americans. But the problem is, Melville never lets the reader know exactly what’s going on until the end of the story. Even then, the court documents and the conclusion are annoyingly sparse. Also, it is hard to determine what, exactly, Melville’s purpose is in writing this story, even though he saw his writing as intimately connected to human, social, political, national, and international concerns. It would be safe to say that ambiguity rather than clarity seems to be Melville’s primary aim in this story.
In an essay of 6 pages, examine an “ambiguous” component of his story “Benito Cereno,” and show what insight this ambiguity would have given to early American readers about the turbulent decades leading up to the Civil War.
Subject of this paper
Who is hurt more by slavery, the master or the slave?