20 Sep 2010 [ Prev | Next ]

Online pre-discussion

By 5pm Monday, complete a brief online exercise that prepares you for Wednesday's class.

Preparation
  1. Create a new, blank word processor file, formatted according to MLA style. (Because STW is a prerequisite of this class, I am assuming you know this format.)
  2. Scan this handout: Close Reading. I'm not requiring you to treat it as an "Assigned Text" and blog about it, but if you have any questions about it, if you find it helpful, or if you would like me to expand it, please feel free to post a comment on that page. If you like, you're welcome to blog about it, and post a link to your blog.

Revision and Writing

  1. Revise the "200-word paragraph" exercise that you completed last week (and uploaded into the "200-word paragraph" slot of Turnitin.com).
  2. Complete the 200-word paragraph that you started in class on Wednesday (Or, if you prefer, write a completely different 200-word paragraph. Your goal is to demonstrate your ability to move beyond accurate summary and "safe" observations, in order to use quotations from the novel to defend a debatable interpretation.)
  3. Create a 200-word close reading of one of the Emily Dickinson poems from the "Nature" sequence. (I suggest that you follow a similar strategy, of choosing a theme, highlighting passages, and formulating your ideas, but you are free to follow whatever strategy helps you.)

    Quick Tips:
    • In poetry, the "I" of the poem is traditionally referred to as "the speaker." Because poets can and do create characters who do the speaking in their poems, it would be inaccurate to say that Dickinson and the "I" of the poem are one and the same. 
    • Dickinson is the poet who created the poem, but the voice that speaks within the world of the poem is the speaker.
    • Just as a close reading of a novel should not retell the plot, a close reading of a poem should not rephrase the meaning of the poem in your own words.
    • Prefer the risky interpretation... so long as you can back it up with specific words.
    • Avoid phrases like "I think" or "In my opinon."  (I already assume that the whole paragraph is your opinon.)

Submission

  1. Upload all three paragraphs in the Exercise 2 slot in Turnitin.com, by 5pm Monday.  (For every paper that is uploaded on time, I will post feedback to you by 6pm Wednesday.)
  2. If you like, you are also welcome to post some or all of these paragraphs on your blog.
  3. There is no separate GriffinGate component.

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