synopsis of secondary source material

Example annotation: synopsis of secondary source material



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Page 1 is the back of the Title page.  It lists the following pertinent information:

  1. Author of essay or book
  2. Title
  3. Publisher
  4. Publication Date


This information provides your readers with the precise edition of the book you used for reference.  That way if someone wants to check your sources, they will know exactly which published version you used.  Often there are different versions published at different times.  Also, you will use this information in your bibliography or works cited page.  Failure to properly document your sources results in plagiarism, which is a crime. Original ideas are protected in the United States. To plagiarize could result in failure and sometimes expulsion.  Take it seriously.




Harold Bloom

Shakespeare: the invention of the human

Chapter 19, “Henry V”

Pages 319-324


Harold Bloom’s essay on Shakespeare compares the development of Prince Hal in Henry IV parts 1 and 2 with King Henry in what he considers a lesser play, Henry V.  Although various movies have made Henry V popular, Bloom feels that King Henry is less varied than Prince Hal and that he shows a certain moral weakness by deserting his friends, primarily one of Shakespeare’s most popular characters, Falstaff.  King Henry’s great virtue is his ability to stir his troops to fight, which Bloom feels he did by promising what he had no intention to deliver, to make his soldiers “gentlemen” (320).


Bloom accounts for this character transition by citing Henry V’s own popularity as a “brutally shrewd” king who was one of England’s most successful monarchs up to that point in history (322).  He also mentions the political problem Shakespeare probably had with the state censors who had already silenced Christopher Marlowe and Ben Johnson.  Shakespeare would have had to help perpetuate the “Tudor Myth” of divine right, a difficult edge to walk when writing about a non-Tudor, yet immensely popular king.


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Bloom goes on to write that the basis of Henry V is ironic.  This irony stems from an allusion contributed to Fleullen about Henry’s likeness to the great Greek hero Alexander whose life Henry’s parallels in many ways, including killing their best friends and their early deaths.  While Henry’s many flaws make him a poor specimen of a human being, this “militarism, brutality, pious hypocrisy all are outshone by England’s charismatic hero-king.” (324).  While not Shakespeare’s best history play, we are still rewarded with the reading.


Cheeseman 10

Work Cited

Brindle, Reginald Smith.  “The Search Outwards: The Orient, Jazz, Archaisms.” The New Music: The Avant-Garde Since 1945.  New York: Oxford UP, 1975. 133-45.

Burnett, James.  “Ellington’s Place as a Composer.” Gammond 1412-55.

Ellington, Duke.  Afro-Eurasian Eclipse. 19712. Fantasy, 1991.

—. Black, Brown, and Beige. 1945.  RCA Bluebird, 1988.

—. The Far East Suite. LP, RCA, 1965.

Gammon, Peter, ed. Duke Ellington: His Life and Music. 1958. New York: Da Capo, 1977.

Griffiths, Paul.  A Concise History of Avant-Garde Music: From Debussy to Boulez.  New York: Oxford UP,  1978.

Haase, John Edward.  Beyond Category:  The Life and Genius of Duke Ellington.  Fwd.  Wynton Marsalis.  New York: Simon, 1993

Hitchcock, H. Wiley.  Music in the United States: An Introduction.  2nd ed. Englewood Cliffs: Prentice, 1974.

Rattenbury, Ken. Duke Ellington, Jazz Composer.  New Haven: Yale UP, 1990.

Southern, Eileen.  The Music of Black Americans: A History.  2nd ed. New York: Norton, 1983

Tucker, Mark, ed. The Duke Ellington Reader.  New York: Oxford UP, 1993.


Sample First Page of a Research Paper


Don F. Cheeseman

English Hero

Professor White

17 December 2001


The Hero Based on “Their Power of Action”

In studying the impact of Northrup Frye’s classification system on my “Adventure of the Hero” class, historians tend to note the outstanding contributions from such figures as James Lin (Mr. and Mrs. Lin; Great Asian Heroes 104-39), whose brilliant insight into the nature of the romantic hero earned accolades from the class and extra points on his quarter grade. Lin seemed possessed of an almost divinely inspired understanding of both J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Fellowship of the Ring and T.H.White’s “The Ill-Made Knight.” In addition, the class itself, though usually highly competitive, was so deeply influenced by Lin’s obviously brilliant insight, that they felt not the least bit jealous of his success. As Frazier and Butler both commented shortly after Lin made the connection between Grendel and Gollom, “Wow!” Even Loulakis exclaimed, “that guy has Hero-class game.” In fact, that particular incident was the first noted moment in the class when both Ford and Perry heard the same thing, Butler was not dozing, Gillespie was smiling and Gray was…just was. It was a non quiz day, so Tripp was in bathroom and Andreas was not at the moment discussing his problems with his girl friend with Raul who, despite what Andreas may have thought, was at that moment dreaming of an IAC tennis Championship.  Contributors in the class included the “Asian Connection,” a duo of 2nd language students, Mr. Hong and Mr. Park, who had to constantly restrain themselves to not embarrass their American counterparts too badly, Long Ekstrom and Spinning Mosca who were on a special schedule which included college attendance in addition to their regular high classes, and Devin Waddell who got it.  There, in attendance, were also the misbegotten, as usual, attracted to Mr. C’s rather radical idea that, contrary to popular “Adult” belief, things were actually getting better.  “Who wouldn’t want to be a kid again?” Most adults believed that this last group held little promise in the world.  Mr. C, on the contrary, would have felt honored to have any of them on his side when the going got tough.  He’d seen “The Dirty Dozen” at least a dozen times.  He longed to play Lee Marvin’s part.

Contrary Yoda man, desiring the essence of film to make his, little attention paid.  Accidently discovering his audience at everything laughed as long as on the screen it was projected, catapulted to heights he was, dizzying and long before the ground his feet hit and long before jaded he became at the philistine’s lack of wit, heard to remark he was:

“Oh! I knew that already.  That was what I meant. You didn’t hear me correctly. Pout.  Pout.  Pout.  Pout.  Pout.  Pout outrageously.  But not as outrageously as this (trying to stand on his head but failing outrageously).  Loud crash.  Disturbance.  Offend.  Offend.  Offend. Grown Old, as time preys. Cannibals of time crunck yummy minutes inside a brain eased by dis. I think I’ll go, he and take a….”

Fortunately, listening no one at that moment was nor could hear inside his mind was happening what.  Although his teacher had almost god-like patience, he too weary became at Antics by Contrary Man.  One wonders, where is Contrary man land? Or space for that matter?  Inner or outer.  One can only hope up he will grow, tree from acorn he, before storm over him blows and into dust he tumbles.


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  1. Task Definition

Where do I start?


You are to complete a Research Project for the 1st semester Hero Class– You must pick a book with literary merit that must be approved by the teacher (please avoid popular fiction or non-fiction):


You may select your book through the George Library DESTINY catalog.


In researching your book you should begin with the resources available to you from your research guide that are accessible from the George Library web page.


You must select 7 credible and appropriate (pertain to your topic), scholarly articles from scholarly sources plus 2 books (chapters) and annotate them. The purpose of this assignment is to familiarize you with the process of gathering information from a library.  In learning the method of gathering and annotating information, you will be that much more prepared when required to write and research in college.You are expected to:

  • Select a book
  • Submit a First Draft
  • Turn in your FINAL Draft 

·       Submit a Synopsis of the Plot

·       Submit a Characterization of Protagonist and Antagonist

·       Complete Your Book

·       Formulate a Working Thesis”

·       Submit a Working Outline

·       Research and Select Articles to Support Your Thesis

·       Complete a Preliminary Bibliography and a Short Description of the Main Points and Sub-topics of the Articles you have selected.


Your teacher will give you your due dates. 

Select a Paper Format:

1.    A paper on a particular work.  You might treat character (for example, “The Character of Bottom in A Midsummer’s Night Dream”, or “The Question of Whether Willy Loman is a Hero or Antihero in “Death of a Salesman”), or tone, ideas, form, problems, and the like.  A research paper on a single work is similar to an essay on the same work, except that the research paper takes into account more views and fact than those you are likely to have without the research.

2.    A paper based on a comparison and contrast.  These are two types:

a.     A paper on an idea of some artistic quality common to two or more authors.  Your intention might be to show points of similarity or contrast or to show that one author’s work may be read as a criticism of another’s. A possible subject of such a paper might be “The Theme of Ineffectuality in Behn, Eliot, Steinbeck, and Williams,” or “Behn’s Antimale Poems in the Context of Male Domination Lyric Poetry of the Seventeenth Century.”

b.  A paper concentrating on opposing critical views of a particular work or body of work.  Sometimes much is to be gained from an examination of differing critical opinions. “The Question of Hamlet’s Hesitation.”

3.    A paper showing the influence of an idea, an author, a philosophy, a political situation, or an artistic movement on a specific work of an author.  As this paper has the potential to run long, this type of paper might have to be modified to suit the length requirement.

4.    A paper on the origins of a particular work or type of work.




What are the possible sources of information I can use?

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Use:  – Online References

           Internet Sites from your RESEARCH GUIDE


If necessary you may go to a university or college library to find additional resources.



Where will I find these sources?

Use the DESTINY catalog to find books in our library.

Use the recommended databases and web sites found on your Library Research Guide. 

Passwords are available in the library.


Deciding what information to use and how I will use this information

The Research Paper

Traditional procedure

  1. If possible, select a subject that interests you and that you can treat within the assigned limits of time and space. Your paper will be 8-10 pages.
  2. Determine your purpose in writing the paper.
  3. Consider the audience – your peers and your teacher.  Remember that your teacher is an ‘expert’ in the field.
  4. Develop a thesis statement expressing the central idea of your paper.
  5. Gather your ideas and information in a preliminary list, eliminating anything that would weaken your paper.
  6. Arrange materials in an order appropriate to the aims of the paper and decide on the method you will use in developing your ideas (definition, classification, analysis, comparison and contrast, example)
  7. Make a detailed outline to help you keep to your plan as you write.
  8. Write a preliminary draft critically and try to improve it, revising, rearranging, adding, and eliminating words, phrases, and sentences to make the writing more effective.  Follow the same procedure with each subsequent draft.
  9. Proofread the final draft, making all final corrections
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