(Original post by MaraCarberry)
Hi. The deadline for the EPQ submission is approaching and I'm still trying to figure out a suitable topic for my project that relates to English Literature. I'm not sure exactly what I want to base the project on exactly but I have a lot of ideas and I'm looking for some opinions, some new ideas and some advice.
Some of my ideas include feminism in Jane Austen novels, the evolution of antagonists/protagonists, etc.
I would really appreciate some help.
Feminism is quite a common EPQ topic. I know about five people just at my college who did theirs on feminism in literature. The antagonist protagonist idea sounds fantastic - I would do it within a specific period eg romanticism gothic etc. I'm on my gap year and have nothing better to do so I made you a list of possible ideas aha:
1. Societal views on mental health in literature and how it has changed over time (the vast majority of Shakespeares plays (lady Macbeth, King Lear) tess, Jane eyre, far from the madding crowd, revolutionary road, the great gatsby, a streetcar named desire) you could also compare to modern day dramas - sitcoms for example. Think about how in the past those with mental health issues were deemed mad, suicide was the most damned sin. Whereas now we see mental health issues as actual illnesses and suicides as tragic and sad instead of disgusting.
2. Race and ethnicity in literature (othello, beloved, to kill a mockingbird, of mice and men, Song of Solomon)
3. There is a hypothesis that the way women and men write is different. Could explore that.
4. homosexuality, incest, murder, prostitution, paedophila, rape and all the taboos of society and how audiences over time responded to them (tis pity she's a whore, tess, the pretty milkmaid, a streetcar named desire, the great gatsby, Annie on my mind, death in Venice, a single man, Maggie, nana, east of Eden). For example, paedophila, rape, prostitution, incest and murder were all perfectly acceptable one time ago. As time has gone on these have all become the worst crimes whilst homosexuality has become widely accepted - and so it should be! Also acknowledge this is mainly in western culture.
You could focus on any of these in a selection of one author of you want. I would highly recommend looking at poetry, plays, folksong, films etc to show depth and range!