Thesis Statements


A thesis statement is the main point you are trying to make about the literature you are discussing. All of the information in your paper should, in one way or another, work to support your thesis statement. A good thesis statement is ARGUMENTATIVE in nature and is supported with a detailed interpretation of the text (or texts). You DO NOT want a thesis statement that is FACTUAL (Raymond Carver is a man), or that is SPECULATIVE (What if Raymond Carver is really a woman?), or that states an OPINION (Not only is Raymond Carver a bad writer, he's also ugly).

By now you should have read some articles on your chosen works and have a general idea of how scholars have approached your works. You should also have begun compiling your literary matrix, so you have some notes from both primary (the chosen 2 works) and secondary sources.

Now it is time to start to formulate your thesis. This thesis is a “working thesis”; that means you should be willing to change this thesis as you proceed. Research is learning process; as you learn more and gain new insights you should consider refining your thesis to match your improved understanding/ interpretation.