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You just need a little push in the right direction. There are many different ways to analyze a piece of poetry or literature.
It’s important to write your thesis before you start writing the rest of your paper. However, keep in mind you’re writing an analysis, not a summary.
This ensures you have a clear direction to show where your analysis is heading. Before you go diving head first into building the perfect thesis statement, let’s look at a few different paths for writing a killer Sir Gawain and the Green Knight analysis—plot, characters, and literary devices. Break down each plot point, and explain its significance to the rest of the story.
We can look into the aspect of Christian beliefs in the poem and their relation with pagan symbols and customs.
We can talk about the style and the language used in the work.
I cannot possibly fit all the characters, symbols, and plot points into one post, so think of this list as a starting point to generate your own ideas. While some pieces of literature break the normal structure—exposition, rising action, conflict, falling action, resolution—Sir Gawain sticks with convention. Then add any or all of the following: Sir Gawain and the Green Knight explores the theme of chivalry throughout various points in the poem.
As a knight, Gawain must stand up for his king, which pulls him into the game with the Green Knight in the first place.While this is certainly true, you want your analysis to stand out more, don’t you?So go for an interpretation that’s different—survival.Green sticks out a lot in this poem—after all, the Green Knight is basically the Jolly Green Giant. Writing an analysis of the symbolism in the color green could take you in a lot of different directions.One of the most common analyses of the symbolism of green in this poem is that it represents nature.The basic plot points are as follows: Would you lie or cheat in a game if it meant saving your own life? Sir Gawain is known for being chivalrous, noble, and virtuous—everything a knight of the Round Table should be.He is also modest and doesn’t think he’s as awesome as everyone else thinks he is.Characters, like plot, are easy to simply summarize—so don’t fall into that trap here, either.Choose one character, such as Gawain, the Green Knight, or Lady Bertilak, and show your reader you really understand the character.Green is not the only symbol or literary device you can use in your analysis. You can discuss themes and motifs, structure, point of view—really just about anything as long as you have the evidence from the text to back up your claims.Now that you have some ideas for your Sir Gawain and the Green Knight analysis, it’s time to start writing!