Analyzes Isaiah Berlin’s conception of freedom in the content of one of the works we have studied

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For this assignment, you will be writing an analytical paper that analyzes Isaiah Berlin’s conception of freedom in the content of one of the works we have studied in the class so far. You will also need to employ close reading skills from that text to support your discussion of freedom.

Suggested steps:

-Explain Berlin’s concept of freedom. Use both paraphrase and summary to ensure a faithful rendition of his idea of negative freedom (and document the source in MLA format).

-Apply those concepts to the text of your choice, by making a broad case first, using major plot moments or major concepts from the work.

-Select a couple of relevant portions of the text that illustrate the case you are making and perform close reading analysis on those quotations to further make your point.

The goal of this assignment is to engage with the literary text using Isaiah Berlin’s Two Concepts of Liberty as a tool, in order to develop a thorough analysis. (Course Objectives 1, 2, 4)

Close Reading:

Close reading is a standard beginning technique for a variety of literary analysis. It requires the reader to read the texts carefully and thoroughly. Use the following steps as a guide for your close reading analysis:

1.Read and reread the text several times

2.Carefully note the diction (word choice).

3.Look for images and symbols/metaphors. Relate them with each other.

4.Look for elements of language and style.

5.Examine the tone, speaker (narrator), theme, setting and point of view.

6.Are there any paradoxes? Ambiguities? Tensions? Ironies? Or conflicts?

7.Finally, put all the clues (elements), which helped in developing the text, in front of you. Re-associate them with the complexities of the whole text. Explain the text’s meaning, thus by resolving its tensions.


Texts: Isaiah Berlin’s Two Concepts of Liberty and Between the World and Me, The Tempest, A Tempest, or Robinson Crusoe

Length: 4 pages

Format: MLA