“The Resilience of Solomon Northup: Coping Mechanisms and Survival Strategies in Twelve Years a Slave”

Students will write a typed, 3 page essay on their reading Solomon Northup’s Twelve Years a Slave.  Make sure and also follow the guidelines for writing formal papers (below)
Similarly, students should answer the posed question in essay form.    Below are the essential components of an essay: 
1.  Introduction: (ca. 5-7 sentences) answers the entirety of the posed question in the form of an argument.  Here, students should outline a strong thesis statement that addresses clearly the posed question.   Students should place significant thought in crafting an effective and concise introduction.
2. Body: (ca. 4-5 good paragraphs).  Here, students outline specific examples from the book to support the thesis statement.  Again, having read the book prior to the exam date is essential.  Moreover, students should directly link or connect evidence or examples from the book to their respective thesis statements.  Students should also be careful in including irrelevant or extraneous information for the sake of writing something down or include material as filler.  Evidence should be linked to both the question and the thesis statement. 
3.  Conclusion:  (ca. 2-3 sentences) Students should round their essays out with a concluding statement which is merely a brief restatement of the overarching thesis or argument. 
Discuss the various coping mechanisms–or those things which allowed Northup to endure the degradation of enslavement.  What did Northup do specifically to keep his morale up and survive?  What was most effective and why?
Mechanical Requirements:  Mechanics: Typed in 12-point, New Times Roman Font with 1-1.5″ inch margins.  All papers should be 3 pp. and double-spaced.  Do not include a bibliography and do not use any other sources.  For documenting your evidence, or points, use simple parenthetical citation [for Solomon Northup], e.g. (N-54) or (N-54,26,78).
All papers are limited to one direct quote from the book; a paper with numerous direct quotes blunts the students’ voice and argument.  Avoid littering papers with direct quotes from the book.
After each paragraph in the body, a parentheses noting where evidence came from is required.  Papers should be 3 pp. in length.  All papers should also be numbered. 

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