Literary Analysis Essay

Before you begin drafting a literary analysis essay, it is crucial to be aware that you are not writing a summary or a text criticism. It simply involves examining the elements of a text to determine how the composer relays his message. The process of writing this essay explained thoroughly below.

What is the Purpose of a Literary Analysis Essay?

So, what is the purpose of a literary analysis essay? Knowing the significance of a literary analysis essay will enable one to understand prose style and language.

  • Through literary analysis, the student gets an in-depth knowledge of the information the author planned to portray and how he used contrasting concepts to pass through his message.

  • Students master how to express their views in a straightforward manner. Recording your ideas frequently and skimming the commentaries of successful writers, will equip you with useful skills.

  • Writing a literary essay enables the learner to compare the stories in the texts with their reality.

  • A literary essay helps us to identify how various notions are portrayed in literary work. For example, we can understand how the author uses metaphors to describe the behavior of an individual.

How to Write a Literary Analysis Essay

Before embarking on the documentation process, it is necessary to gather the correct resources, list your thoughts, and perceptions regarding the text. These components below will guide you to understand the requirements.

  1. The Elements

Literature requires you to assess a text from contrasting standpoints unlike when you are reading for leisure. Authors use different elements to convey a deeper meaning of the text. Examples of components include characters, conflict, tone, and symbolism. Characters help the learner in the evaluation because they are used interchangeably by the composer to express different sentiments about culture, religion, and race. The conflict is usually the feud between the star and his adversary. The author uses this to develop an idea with relevance to the problems in that period.

  1. Literary Tools

Writers usually use literary tools such as imagery, and metaphors to interpret themes in their texts. In a literary analysis essay example of Shakespeare’s ‘Romeo and Juliet,’ sun and darkness are used as symbolism. Honest individuals are seen during the day while evil ones are always seen at night.

  1. Use the 5 W’s

What is the purpose of writing a literary analysis essay? This question can be broken down into the writer, the location, period, reasons, and purpose of the narrative. Answering these questions will give you an idea of how to write your essay.

  • Who wrote the novel? Does his upbringing affect his work? In what ways are the composer and the characters similar?

  • What is the plot of the narrative and what events stand out?

  • Where is the setting of the story?

  • When is the text composed? Does this influence your understanding?

  • Why do you think your argument is valid and do you have proof from the novel?

The Writing Process

After reading and developing your concepts, recording becomes the easiest exercise of this process. A good essay should be organized in order for the audience to enjoy. Below are the basics that will assist the learner to understand the correct way to draft a literary analysis essay:

  1. Introduction

Your introduction needs to be a brief explanation regarding the title and the fundamental concepts. Provide literal proof to demonstrate to the audience that one has analyzed the text. Students can provide their evidence by including quotations, summaries, and paraphrasing. When using quotation marks directly from the source remember to include the quotation marks; however, if the citation has been altered the quotation marks are not necessary. You can choose to use your own words to restate your evidence. Remember to give credit and cite the work belonging to others.

  1. The Body

This is the largest part of your essay. It is made up of several paragraphs each containing a single idea. These paragraphs should include evidence from the text. Your analysis should describe and develop the central idea. Questions such as why does this matter? Who is affected by this? This will guide you to develop responses to be used as an analysis. A sample literary analysis essay of Shakespeare’s ‘Romeo and Juliet,’ a scholar can include his analysis of why the composer used these individuals.

  1. The Conclusion

The conclusion as your wrapping up last paragraph should restate the case statement while giving a recap of the primary ideas of your essay. Introducing a new idea confuses the audience and makes your work look untidy.

Literary Analysis Essay Example

Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein

Exploring sympathy for Frankenstein’s Invention

Victor spawns a ‘loathsome evil'(90) a beast who anguishes him in Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. This beast causes chaos and commits many horrible misdeeds that instigate his maker to send him abroad. Even so, this mutant falls short of scary to the audience; it mirrors a gentle soul who is segregated by the community.

The monstrosity is blamed for the murders of all his master’s acquaintances. These deaths occur simultaneously which this almost push his master to insanity. He consults the ‘ghosts of the departed’ in sync with the ‘wondering ancestors’ (179) to make the behemoth suffer the agonies he is enduring. The beast causes havoc by burning the DeLacey’s residence then moves ‘filled with anger all over the smoldering house’ (123) exhibiting the nature of a primitive being. He delights in causing misery to the master. He confirms this by writing ‘your agony will appease my eternal animosity’ (181) Taking the story on Frankenstein’s view, would make the audience hate the beast but Shelley averts this by recounting the narrative from the mutant’s context. The first person narrative used by this mutant shows that he far from an abominable creature as his creator alleges.

The beast gets the audience’s compassion owing to the fact that he is shunned and lacks company or emotional support. When the scientist first gazes at his experiment he flees, these are agonizing flashbacks of the mutant. ‘As a needy defenseless, depressed brute; I beheld and comprehended nobody, but feeling anguish attack me from every side, I stayed and sobbed’ (92) If he were a man he would gain from souls of humans which Delacey suggests are proficient in ‘genuine love and goodwill'(199) Sadly for him, his hideous appearance causes fear and indifference wherever he steps. His quest for a meal establishes the first encounter with men. He enters their village where he is abruptly ‘harshly treated and injured by rocks and differently fashioned weaponry ‘(95). The DeLaceys whom the beast idoloze, assault him when found in their compound; Felix knocks him ‘vigorously using a rod’ (120) Nonetheless, the beast refuses to react to these cruel treatments although he professes that he could rip him ‘ crush his bones as the predator subdues the prey’ but his ‘ soul darkened with regret and [he] resisted’ The beast is outraged when he stumbles upon his image. Revolted by his face and discriminated by the town he stalks the only being that he has a relationship with.

When the beast is disconnected from the scientist, he suffers emotionally because nobody wants to be around him. His quest is to reunite with Victor, the scientist who ‘granted [him] senses and consciousness, and then abandoned [him] aboard an obstacle for the ridicule and dismay of mankind’ (124) in their initial conversation; the beast explains that he was honest and had no ill intentions. He obliges to be ‘gentle and obedient to [his] lord and master’ (89) He begs Victor to stop his misery by creating a female beast to be his companion. Victor is moved by the monster’s views, and he confesses that he now comprehends that the beast is a being with real perceptions. The monster swears that ‘if you agree, neither you nor any other person shall see us again’ (130) unfortunately, Victor disapproves of this action. The beast does not depart he says that Victor is ‘ restrained by chains only broken by the death of one of us’ (89) The creature, however, does not murder Frankenstein even when he gets the chance to do so. Instead, he instigates Victor’s anger by murdering Elizabeth. He leads the scientists in places that seldom see people and this way he makes sure that they both suffer isolation.

Being rejected by society can cause depression, and in an attempt to fill up the void they feel and make up for the lost connections, people turn to drastic measures just like Frankenstein’s monster did to get attention.


A literary analysis essay like all other essays becomes easier to draft once the student learns the different literary styles as well as the correct format to use. In a nutshell, you need to convince the audience that you have understood and analyzed the text.