Comparative essay on A Dolls House (Henrik Ibsen) and Riders to the Sea (John Synge)

Firstly we have been told to come up with a question on our own which is something that you must also do as well as writing the essay. I have decided to do this essay on A Doll’s House by Henrik Ibsen and Riders to the Sea by John Synge. It is a comparative essay so every point made must be compared to the other playwright. I have not decided on a proper topic but I would like it to be on the portrayal of women in these two plays and something to do with audience reaction- there is not really an argument to this essay yet which is something you must also come up with (I have given you an idea but there must be a strong argument to the essay which is shown throughout).
There should not only be a discussion about the portrayal of women and audience reaction, but also on the similarities and differences between Ibsen and Synge. Something to bear in mind is that these plays and playwrights are coming from two very different cultural traditions, and this will impact the representations (THIS IS IMPORTANT)
When talking about women in A Doll’s House, the following bullet points must be considered and shown somehow in the essay:
• Modernism
• The ‘well-made’ play- does Ibsen accept/reject the structure of a ‘well-made’ play and how does this link to the argument
• 19th century popular dramatic forms
• REALISM
• Ibsen often called the ‘father of realism’- how does this link to the essay and the main argument- THIS IS VITAL
• Naturalism-Emile Zola (1840-1902), French novelist and playwright ?Influence of Darwin and science ? Free will does not exist; all actions are determined by external forces (heredity, environment, etc.)
• Determinism
• Role of women in 19th century
• Femininity and Masculinity- private and public spheres
• A Doll’s House contemporary reception
THERE ARE TWO ARTICLES WHICH WE WERE TOLD TO READ IN RELATION TO IBSEN AND THESE MUST BE INCLUDED IN THE ARGUMENT SOMEHOW. THEY ARE:
• Ibsen and Feminism by Gail Finney
• Naturalism on the Stage by Emile Zola
When talking about women in Riders to the Sea, the following bullet points must be considered and shown somehow in the essay:
• What kind of Irish woman is Maurya
• The representation of women
THERE ARE TWO ARTICLES WHICH WE WERE TOLD TO READ IN RELATION TO SYNGE AND THESE MUST BE INCLUDED IN THE ARGUMENT SOMEHOW. THEY ARE:
• The Shadow of the Glen and Riders to the Sea by Oona Frawley
• Synge and Gender by Susan Cannon Harris

In the introduction the argument must be stated which outlines the position, how you are going to defend your topic. We have been told to avoid description and be analytical. Moreover, whilst making different points, there must be a thesis/main point goes back to the main argument.
We have been told to think about PEEL where P=Point, E=Evidence, E=Explain, L=Link to argument. This must be included in every point.
As I am paying for this order to be at the standard of a 1st, below is a list of everything that is to expected from my University in an assignment of the standard of a 1st.
• Precise focus on themes and concepts relevant to the argument being developed; the use of these shows intellectual engagement; there is acknowledgement of the wider context in which they are located coupled with a recognition of the scope of the assignment.
• Original close textual analysis and imaginative interpretation of dramatic texts. The analyses of the texts are informed by relevant and specific critical perspectives which have clearly been understood. Discussion should engage critically with these perspectives.
• Ideas are logically organised, creating a clear, fully developed argument. Argument is compelling and persuasive throughout. Suggests work has been planned, drafted and redrafted extensively.
• Relevant historical, cultural and social contexts are explained accurately and they inform the interpretation of the literary texts. Knowledge of these contexts is supported by reference to secondary sources.
• Uses a wide-selection of appropriate secondary sources that address different aspects of the discussion (e.g. literary, theoretical, historical, social). Sustained engagement demonstrates that the arguments of these sources have clearly been understood and interrogated. Quotation is precise, succinct and integrated into the discussion.
• In-text quotations are consistently correctly referenced and are set out accurately. An accurate reference list appears at the end of the essay.
• Writing is accurate and error free; sentences are grammatically constructed and punctuation used correctly.
• Ideas are expressed in a confident and engaging manner. The writing style is scholarly but accessible and appropriate for this artefact. The writing is eloquent and expressive.
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