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Topic: Author’s Dialogue

Order DescriptionFor your third writing assignment, write a dialogue between at least three different literary figures we’ve read this semester. Imagine what would happen if they got together and had a dialogue about an idea, issue, or theme of significance to their written work, and then write that conversation. A good starting point will be the issues we’ll talk about in class, but possibilities for subjects and themes in your dialogue are endless.

A successful performance will require close and critical reading, as well as a good bit of creativity. The dialogue should reflect your insights into the minds and texts you choose to represent, and will demonstrate your understanding of the issue around which you organize the argument. An important point to remember is that most of these authors had sizeable egos, and would have made lots of references to their own writings. In fact, I’ll expect you to provide at least three correctly-documented quotations from literary works by each of the authors you’re using.

These should not be boring! Again–this assignment allows for a great deal of creativity. If you want to have Henry James fight a boxing match against Leslie Silko on Mars with Mary Rowlandson as referee, then do so! Just be sure that the central issue doesn’t get lost in all the fun.

Please remember that your most basic purpose is to present and argue a well-reasoned point effectively, not necessarily to come up with an interpretation or argument that matches my own.


No shorter than 3 double-spaced pages
Incorporate at least 3 authors.
APA or MLA manuscript format, including a correctly formatted bibliography.
Evaluation Criteria:

How well does the dialogue reflect an understanding of the minds and texts of the chosen writers?
How well does the dialogue reflect an understanding of the central idea, issue, or theme?
How well are sources integrated with the writer’s own sentences using paraphrases and direct quotations?
How well does the paper follow APA or MLA guidelines for in-text citation and documentation of sources?
Are grammar, punctuation, and spelling up to the standards expected of a college writer?

Here are the books we have read:
•Mary Rowlandson. The Sovereignty and Goodness of God.
• Nathaniel Hawthorne. The Scarlet Letter & Other Writings. Norton Critical Edition
• Henry James. Tales of Henry James. Norton Critical Edition
• Toni Morrison. Beloved.
• Sandra Cisneros. Woman Hollering Creek and Other Stories.
• Leslie Marmon Silko. Storyteller. 2nd edition.

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