Literary Topics for Research Papers: Comparing Different Periods and Ideas

Comparing two time periods in a literary research paper can be difficult but not completely impossible.  You have to look at the different periods and make a list of similar and different things for each period.  You can also compare two periods in two different books.  Books written in the early 20th century are way different than the ones that are written today because they were written during time periods with different surrounding.  These kind of research papers can be interesting, here are some ideas that you can use to write one of these research papers.

Literary Topics For Comparing Different Periods

  • The first kind of literary research paper that you can do that has to do with different periods is to pick two books written in the same time period and compare and contrast the difference in the books.  Different authors will have written them but you can compare the characters, theme, setting, and so on.  Most books written in the same time period usually have an underlying theme to do with what was going on during that period, you can find that and explain it.
  • Compare a book written a hundred years ago to a book written today on the same subject.  This will let you see how the topic was written in both periods and then you could compare the two books take on the subject.
  • Pick an era or age when two books were written.  Two books written around the same time in an era or age will probably have similar themes and points.  For example, you can pick two books that were written during the Civil War era and you can compare them.
  • Use an author to compare over a time period. For example if you want to do your research paper on Edgar Allan Poe, you could choose Poe’s earliest and latest works and compare how his writing had changed over the years or how his writing changed with the time periods that were written.
  • Pick two books written in the same time period fictionally.  Let’s say you want to use the 1920’s as your time period for this research paper. You can use The Great Gatsby as one of your books and then pick another book form today set in the 20’s and compare how the author approached recreating that time period.  I would be interesting to see how someone that lived then interrupted the era and how someone today does.

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