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Summer Assignment 2016-2017

English 2 Honors Summer Project 2016-2017

During the summer students will read Oedipus Rex and Oedipus at Colonus by Sophocles. The Theban Trilogy is comprised of three plays, and students must read the two plays listed above.

  • For the work as a whole, students are to complete the SOAPSTone + Theme worksheet (20 points) for Oedipus Rex. The entries must be detailed and some research might be required. See example below.
  • For each of the plays, students will keep a Literature Log – the format being a four-column style analysis.
  • Students will write thirty entries for  Oedipus Rex and ten entries for Oedipus at Colonus. Lit Log for: Oedipus Rex (60 points) and Oedipus at Colonus (20 points) = 40 entries total (80 points)


Once the academic school year begins students can expect the following to take place within the first two weeks of school:

  • Submission of work on the FIRST DAY of school (project is worth 100 points see breakdown above)
  • Comprehension test (may be short answer questions, so don’t count on a multiple choice or true/false test) the FIRST WEEK of school
  • Literary analysis essay within the FIRST TWO WEEKS of school
  • Literary terms test some time during FIRST QUARTER (note: a comprehensive list of literary terms is provided to you under the Summer Projects tab for English II Honors.

SOAPSTone + Theme: This is for the novel or text as a whole!

SpeakerWho is the Speaker?
The voice that tells the story.
Non-Fiction – the author/speaker and any background information that might bear upon his/her text.
Fiction – the narrator, not the author, and any implied traits or characteristics that might influence the text.

Students should go beyond merely identifying the Speaker by name (occasionally, none will be given). They should be able to apply outside knowledge to Speaker, or infer traits from the text itself.
OccasionWhat is the Occasion?
The time and the place of the piece; the context that encouraged the writing to happen.
Non-Fiction – the event that triggered the response
Fiction – the primary, specific event being discussed (summary)

Students should contextualize historical events or the “environment of ideas” that led to a text being produced. Students should also be able to summarize the events in a few words or phrases.
AudienceWho is the Audience?
The group of readers/listeners to whom a piece is directed.
Non-Fiction and Fiction – the specific person, small group, or larger group a piece is aimed at

There may be multiple audiences, and the audience(s) may need to be discovered through student inference of the level of discourse in the text, the diction, the connotation of chosen words, and the traits of the Speaker.
PurposeWhat is the Purpose?
The reason behind the text?
Non-Fiction – what the Speaker wants the Audience to think or do as a result of reading/listening to the piece
Fiction – the larger “point” being examined in the piece; the “theme” presented

Students should apply social, cultural, historical, etc. perspectives to a text to discover what the author/Speaker is attempting to reveal about those perspectives. They should be able to examine the logic of the argument and/or the themes and interpretations being presented.
SubjectWhat is the Subject?
The general topic, content, and ideas contained in the text.
Non-Fiction and Fiction – the larger context of the text (related to Occasion and Purpose)

Students should go beyond the immediate occasion to discover the larger context or issue that eventually led to the triggering Occasion. This should be stated in a few words or a phrase.
ToneWhat is the Tone?
The attitude of the author/Speaker.
Non-Fiction – the meaning imparted by the author that goes beyond the literal; how the author feels about the subject
Fiction – same as above, though it might require a distinction between author and narrator

Students should analyze diction, syntax, connotation, and imagery to determine the attitude being presented.
Thematic StatementsTheme is the central message of a literary work. It is not the same as a subject, which can be expressed in a word or two: courage, survival, war, pride, etc. The theme is the idea the author wishes to convey about that subject. It is expressed as a sentence or general statement about life or human nature. A literary work can have more than one theme, and most themes are not directly stated but are implied. The reader must think about all the elements of the work and use them to make inferences, or reasonable guesses, as to which themes seem to be implied.”

For example, if love is a topic/subject of two novels, a major theme in one of the novels could be “Love, if taken to extremes, can be negative rather than positive,” while in the other novel, the theme might be “Love can conquer even the greatest evil.” Notice that the topic/subject is the same, but the messages about that topic/subject are different in different works

Four Column Literature Log Example:

Literary Term/DeviceThe sentence you found/located the deviceThe effect of device on passageThe effect of passage on the work (novel) as a whole
In this column you need to write the literary term/device:
verbal irony (bold / highlight)

(See list of literary terms)
In this column write the sentence the device is found in: Example: “...and yet sick as you are, not one is as sick as I (Oedipus from Oedipus Rex )In this column you will explain how the line affects or enhances the reader’s understanding of the passage. There is verbal irony in the words of Oedipus because he does not realize that he suffers from a scourge far greater than the physical pain of his subjects. In this column you must explain how the passage affects or enhances the reader’s understanding of the passage as a whole. For example: Verbal irony enhances the mystery and the suspense surrounding Oedipus’ search for the murderer and his own identity.