Princeton Supplement Essay Literary Analysis Essay On A&P By John Updike
If you go with this topic, keep in mind the potential pitfalls of writing about disparities and problems of race and money– looking arrogant or paternalistic or simplistic or self righteous as you insert yourself into the problems of others.
So if you choose to write about culture or disparities, try to do so without looking like some kind of imperialist in a pith helmet.
You might want to have a look at Professor Wasow’s background and the speech that inspired this prompt, and to delve into the online community he started, Blackplanet, as you think about this one.I also suggest that you visit the New York Review of Books, which always has an article which discusses a series of new or recent titles and puts them in perspective.Have a look at my posts on writing about books, starting with this one, and you may find some useful passages for your purposes in this quote essay–be aware that the NYRB articles are meant largely to discuss books but many wander far afield in ways that may give you ideas on writing an essay tying your own life to what you have found in a book.The first thing to think about with this prompt: starting with a quote can be hackneyed and the quote intro can also be used thoughtlessly or clumsily–for example, by jumping from the quote to a more-or-less unrelated idea in such a way that the quote is really an excuse to start an essay more than a true starting point.The idea is that the opening quote should be integrated into or lead naturally into the opening paragraph and so flow on through the rest of the essay.Here are two more specific examples from Joan Didion; both are a factor of magnitude longer than the 500-word essay, but they still give you the flavor and an example of how to work with quotes.Notice that some of Didion’s essays could be cut down to a three-paragraph excerpt and, with perhaps a sentence or two of more direct exposition, work as a short essay, like the one you want. For those of you writing the Princeton Engineering Essay, I will be posting on this very soon, so please come back to read my discussion of the Princeton Engineering prompt–you might as well write your supplemental first and then do the research that an engineering essay requires.I include a review of the history of these prompts, the writing situation, and examples of strategies with links to key information for writing successful essays.What is New for This Year in The Princeton Supplemental Essays?It might be best to look at a few examples of folks who know how to work a quote into an essay–you might try reading some Montaigne, or for a modern idiom, you could try this link, to Paul Theroux’s the Old Patagonian Express, and read pages 3-6, which don’t begin with a quote, but he soon uses multiple quotes and you can see a good example of quote and content being integrated there..This three-page section of the book has been excerpted as an essay and gives a good example of thought and action as Theroux looks at himself in relation to others engaged in the same activity.