In the book, Just like a River by Muhammad Kamil al-Katib is a fiction story about a family in Syria. The story shows how the political and societal beliefs during this time lead to complex relationships between the characters. The book was written to show that how old world beliefs clash and intermingle between current and progressive beliefs of the new younger generations and shows how complex even simple relationship can become when following your convictions and hiding ones true feelings. The book was written for Arabic readers and was translated for an English speaking audience this is where I believe that the original intent of the author was to show the complexities of living in Syria with Arabic and Islamic beliefs but the translation expands this intention to relate to everyone especially English speaking audiences. However, with this translation, the book can show any reader despite their beliefs can relate to the complexities of ...view middle of the document...
This may seem a bit confusing, but think of your thesis statement creation as a three step process.
* First, identify what you think is the thesis or purpose of the book.
* Second, ask yourself if the author successfully proves that thesis or achieves the purpose of his/her book (and how he/she does this).
* Third, your answer to that question should be your thesis statement.
For example, let’s pretend we read a book about a Saudi Arabian family living in the United States.
* First, we might decide that the author’s purpose was to comment on the racist attitudes that were prevalent in U.S. society toward Arabs (whether we believe that is true or not does not matter really).
* Second, we might ask ourselves how did the author successfully demonstrate American racism toward Arabs.
* Third, we might decide that the author did a splendid job of illustrating this racism through recounting stories of the children’s school activities, the mother’s exclusion from social interaction with other mothers, and the father being shunned by his co-workers - which could be formulated as our thesis statement.
Something like this - “Through his detailed portrayal of the everyday ordeals of the Al-Baghdadi family in a rural Kansas community, Joe Author vividly demonstrated in his book, Baghdadis in America, the underlying racism of America that Middle Easterners often encounter.” Remember - three steps - what’s the thesis/purpose of the novel, how successfully is that purpose achieved or thesis proven, and then your answer to that question forms your thesis statement.
With a clear thesis statement, a good analysis is possible. Often when students do not have a clear thesis statement, their papers quickly become summaries of the books. You must absolutely avoid a paper that does nothing but summarizes the book. A very brief paragraph that describes the general plot of the book is acceptable - but this must be VERY brief. You are highly advised to skip any summary of the book in your analysis. I have read all the books and am most interested in your analysis