Ms. Gokturk

Trends in Literature

Oryx and Crake Essay


  1. Choose one of the quotes or statements from below. Write a 1-2 page essay on ONE of the following passages/statements, which you will use as a critical lens for the novel. Interpret the passage/statement (state what it means in your own words).
  2. Do you agree or disagree? Agree or disagree with the passage/statement as you interpreted it without using “I” or “my” or “me.” Simply take a position: is it true or false … based on the context in the novel?
  3. Formulate a clear, succinct and interesting thesis statement and write an interesting paper that supports it. Then support your position, referring selectively and thoughtfully to details that suggest the passage is TRUE or NOT to be taken as truth.
  4. Develop your ideas fully, providing logical connections and relevant textual support. Use direct quotes and paraphrasing for support. Embed each quote in your explanation/interpretation. Use parenthetical page citations.


Please refrain from making grandiose, sweeping statements. The first paragraph should be specific and direct, identifying the title, author, and genre of the works, and ending with a clear, interesting, and succinct thesis statement. Develop the ideas fully in the body, providing logical connections and relevant text-based evidence (TBE). Your tone should be formal and erudite!



Snowman’s world is more beautiful than Jimmy’s.


Crake is intellectually honorable.


Snowman says, “Things happened, I had no idea, it was out of my control” (45).


Jimmy’s mother says, “You’re interfering with the building blocks of life. It’s immoral. It’s … sacrilegious” (57).


“As a species we are doomed by hope?” (120).


Jimmy says, “I don’t have a price” (139).


Ars Longa Vita Brevis (188).


“Jimmy had few illusions” (188).


Jimmy is also to blame for the JUVE epidemic.


Crake calls his project “an elegant concept” (295).


“There were signs and I missed them” (320).


Watch out for art, Crake used to say. As soon as they start doing art, we’re in trouble. Symbolic thinking of any kind would signal downfall…” (361).