Literature is an interesting subject because it mirrors society. You get to see yourself in the characters you read about and relate to them. The challenges of everyday life and the status quo in society sums up the content in literature. But why do students fail to get top grades?
Poets have a poetic license, while authors express themselves using figurative language, making the text beautiful pieces of art. No piece can be the same as the other. Students of literature have to appreciate each work of art and study it as a unique text. The language can vary from simple to not ordinary language, demanding critical thinking from students.
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1. Expert Online Tutors
The world has been made a global village thanks to the internet. You can access the literary texts, books, reference materials, notes, and practice exercises online. You don’t have to struggle when you could get an online tutor to help you with problematic areas.
Take advantage of study notes and assignments available online. Work with experts who are experienced in the field to help you improve your grades in Literature.
Nothing opens the mind like reading. Read, and then read some more. Read to get the flow and an idea of what the text is about, then read to understand.
You will make great strides if you read as you ask questions. Ask the why questions. Also, seek to understand the author’s purpose. Authors write to inform, to create awareness, to condemn, caution, and so on. Knowing the author’s purpose will help you understand the novel, play, or poem.
Critics are a great source of information for literature. Find out what other writers think about literary texts. Include quotes from critics the next time you write and see how you’ll improve.
Researching the background information and context under which an author wrote a play, novel, or poem will give you an idea of the thematic issues they addressed. Interviews, where the author responds to questions from their texts, are also sources of information you’d find helpful.
4. Make Notes
Making notes is a tested skill of studying. Writing notes while in class will help you listen effectively. Sometimes the brain might wander from class, and you find yourself distracted. By writing notes, you focus your mind on the lesson, and as a result, get to understand more. Besides, the notes will help you during revision.
As you study on your own, it is best to develop the habit of making notes. Make notes on the synopsis, themes, style and language, character traits, and characters’ roles.
5. Use Appropriate Literary Terminology
To stand out in your writing, try using literary jargon. Words that resonate with the subject will show that you are a pro and impress your lecturer.
Try using words such as persona, narrator, antagonist, protagonist, action, climax, anti-climax, conflict, a figure of speech, imagery, motif, theme, plot development, characterization, prologue, tone, and mood, among others. You can get a whole list on the internet.
6. Sharpen Writing Skills
Practice makes perfect. The more you write, the better you get. Write essays more often.
Learn how to write a captivating introduction. Make a claim in the introduction, direct readers to your viewpoint, and then back up your opinion with evidence or illustration from a text. Finally, invite the readers to form their own opinion in conclusion to critique your viewpoint. Let your writing answer the question of what, how, and why.
Use transitional words to connect sentences and paragraphs into an essay. Most importantly, demonstrate your confidence by having your own writing style – let your opinion concerning the subject matter shown in your writing.
7. Study Groups
You might be surprised to learn that your understanding of a certain literary text is absolutely different from that of another person. So, be an active participant in a group discussion for literature. It will expose you to different interpretations and help you understand more. Besides, it will stimulate you to learn and be accountable for your studies.
8. Ask Questions
Asking questions will never grow out of fashion; in fact, it will display that you are an intellectual. Seek clarifications on areas you did not understand from your lecturers, peers, and online experts.
Learning literature doesn’t have to be hard and boring. Set your mind to learn and apply the tips suggested above.
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