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How To Pick The Best Topic For A Research Paper In Literature

There are many possible topics for a literature research paper, but how can you go about finding the one that will win your instructor, and your readers over? One critical point to remember is that you are writing a research paper not a regular essay. So the topic that you choose must be well-defined and should take the form of a thesis. Don't forget that you must take a position and be prepared to defend it in the paper.

When writing the paper, use a systematic and coherent approach to the argument you are putting forth. You will need to do research to find sources that support the claims you make in your piece, and these must be well-documented and properly cited. But before that, you must decide on the topic for your paper and develop your thesis.

Themes And Topics For A Literature Research Paper

  • Homosexuality In Literary Works
  • Is homosexuality dealt with differently in different cultures? Are there any examples of gay or lesbian heroes and heroines in the books and poems of Iranian authors? Why or why not? Find an example of a character you believe to be “in the closet” in an Iranian work and defend your findings.

    Does being homosexual alter a writer's style, or how he or she portrays gay and straight characters in their work? If so, how? Did being gay change the way that Oscar Wilde wrote? How about the way in which his works were received by the public at the time? Has our interpretation of his works changed or stayed the same as we have grown more tolerant of different lifestyles?

  • Comparisons Between Different Genres In Literary Works
  • Choose two different genres and compare and contrast the two. What do they have in common and how do they differ? Which genres are the most effective at delivering a political message, or influencing public opinion? You could also choose one work in a certain genre and showed how it changed the world, or at least the prevailing wisdom at the time it was published.

  • Psychological Illness In Literature
  • Examine an example of a “mad” character from a novel, poem or play from a “clinical” perspective. Was Ophelia really crazy? Or perhaps a modern diagnosis would have her borderline paranoid schizophrenic? Maybe she was just experiencing really bad PMS. Who knows? Decide what you think her issues were, formulate a thesis, and write on!


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