Literary Papers Tense

Literary Papers Tense-40
The methodology should be in past tense if it has already happened.

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Which tense you use would depend on what you want to convey and focus on and what is grammatically correct in context. You may find it interesting to note that the use of tense in literature reviews is fairly debated in academic writing circles.

Back in the day—when you were in elementary school—you learned about past tense, present tense, and future tense.

The APA manual discusses tense in the section on Smoothness of Expression on Page 65.

The lit review of an APA style paper should be in past tense (The researchers found...) or present perfect (The researchers have shown...).

Don’t worry—it’s not a completely new type of tense. For most purposes, “literary present tense” is the same as present tense.

Literary present tense means that you need to write in present tense when writing about literature and the arts. It’s called literary present tense to remind you that, when discussing literature and other arts, such as artwork or films, you need to write in present tense.

involves the use of verbs in the present tense when discussing the language, characters, and events in a work of literature.

The literary present is customarily used when writing about literary nonfiction as well as fiction—essays and memoirs as well as novels, plays, and poems.

The published text may not reflect the author’s current thinking, so putting the signal phrase in present tense makes a claim that can’t be investigated within the source material.

If you’re unsure of which tense to use in signal phrases, please check with your instructor, supervisor, or journal editor.

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