Review of Literature
Before you compose your review of literature you will have completed the following steps
1. invent a topic for an autoethnography; have it approved
2. devise authentic research questions for the autoethnography (and publish in a blog)
3. engage in a searching process that includes “informal” searching and searching with library databases (this involves substeps such as recording/saving)
4. participate in research workshops in class with Dr. Katie Rawson and Melanie Kowalski
4. devise or follow authentic criteria for focusing and choosing sources
5. read and understand the sources
6. read and discuss multiple examples of reviews of literaure in class
UW Madison Writing Center defines the purpose of a review of literature this way: “to analyze critically a segment of a published body of knowledge [on a topic] through summary, classification, and comparison [of sources].”
This particular review of literature is designed to be read as a self-contained piece of writing that introduces a general audience to your autoethnography topic in an interesting and nuanced way, beginning with a one-sentence definition. It is not meant to function as the first segment of your writing project but one of many nonlinear pages in the project.
Break it down:
summary: summarize the sources you found for a general audience, but do so concisely, with interest, and with the least repetition possible
classification: select and represent sources by group (“according to common denominators such as [methodological] approaches, conclusions of authors, [or] specific purpose” [UWM WC])
comparison: help readers understand the differences that are most relevant.
You may focus on gaps, trends, conflicts, or new perspectives in the research (UMW WP).
As a rule of thumb, your literature review should refer to five secondary sources. You must show evidence of library database research.
In a reflection paragraph, after you complete the review of literature (ROL), justify or explain the criteria by which you chose and grouped your sources.
MLA style in-text citation or alternative
length 500 words
published on a unique subpage to autoethnography site