Imagine you do not have to worry about making money in order for food or shelter. Everything you could ever want is now taken care of. What would you do now? What would you want to be? What would you decide to do with your time?
What is your purpose in life? To what end are you doing what you are doing?
- Paste journals into the email with clear subjects. Don’t email me links.
- Introduce the articles in journals
- Give journals proper titles
All writing has a purpose. When we write anything, it can be for any number of reasons. When you read a story, try to figure out why the author wrote it. What motivated them to write it? What are they trying to achieve with it?
What possible purpose can the author have? What purpose does the text have?
- To Entertain
- To Inform
- To Persuade
These are the three main purposes a text can have. These are not the only reasons. In college, we write to learn, to build knowledge, to demonstrate learning.
- To Learn
- To Build Knowledge
- To Show learning
When you are given an assignment, figure out what your purpose is. What is the text supposed to convey? Good writing is purposeful. You have to know what you want to accomplish before you can figure out how to accomplish it and if you accomplished it.
We can also think about writing within a conversation. You can write to summarize a conversation, in order to understand it. You can write to enter a conversation. Trying to add to a existing discussion.
- To understand
- To Enter a Conversation
- To Join a Conversation
We are going to practice analyzing Bien Pretty.
The Five Moves of Analysis
- Suspend Judgment: Set aside your likes and dislikes, your agreeing or disagreeing. Say to yourself, “What I find most interesting here is…”.
- Notice and Focus: Simply put, pay close attention to details. “What do you notice?” What is significant/interesting/revealing/ strange. Slow down and take your time here. Don’t jump to interpretations before you’ve exhausted the details. Uncertainty is good.
- Look for Patterns: Start sifting through the text looking for Repetitions, Strands, Binaries, and Anomalies.
- Repetitions: “Anisdel Toro” drink in “Hills Like White Elephants,” etc., sheep dog in “How to Talk to a Hunter”
- Strands: Animals in “How to Talk to a Hunter,” alcohol in “Sonny’s Blues”
- Binaries: Light/Dark in “Sonny’s Blues,” young/old in “One of Star Wars, One of Doom“
- Anomalies: Mysterious notebook in “One of Star Wars, One of Doom,” tin of chocolates with Santa Claus “fondling” children painted on it in “How to Talk to a Hunter”
- Make the Implicit Explicit: Explain to the reader what the details or the patterns imply. Explain your thought process. Pull out the implications and show them why you think they are “folded in” to the meaning of the text or image. What does this mean and So What? Why is it important?
- Keep Reformulating Questions and Explanations: What else might this detail or pattern mean? How else could it be explained? What details don’t fit my theory? Can I adjust my theory to better fit with this?
One author: (Ramos 23).
Two Authors: (Ramos and Smith 23).
Three or more authors: (Ramos et al. 23).
Quote from the article “Sandra Cisneros’s Modern Malinche: A Reconsideration of Feminine Archetypes in Woman Hollering Creek” by Alexandra Fitts:
Cisneros reevaluates, and in a way revalues, the three most prevalent representations of Mexican womanhood: the passive virgin, the sinful seductress, and the traitorous mother, idolized in the figures of the Virgin of Guadalupe, La Malinche, and La Llorona.
Here Fitts directly incorporates a quote from another author:
In the words of Chicana critic and activist Gloria Anzaldúa, “this is her home / this thin edge of / barbwire” (20).
“The historical representative of this sexualized position as cultural mediator is La Malinche. Malinche, doña Marina, Malinalli-she has many names and many incarnations. What we know of her is that she was an Indian woman who served as interpreter and lover to Hernán Cortés while he conquered her land and massacred her people. Infamous as a traitor and a whore, her legacy has been to serve as a representative of the victimization of the native people of Mexico at the hands of the whites, and as the shameful reminder of a woman’s complicity” (Fitts).
Fitts, Alexandra. “Sandra Cisneros’s Modern Malinche: A Reconsideration of Feminine Archetypes in Woman Hollering Creek.” International Fiction Review 29.1 (2002).
Let’s cite an article together.
What questions do you have?
Keep these things in mind.
- Peer edit the same way you revise your own work.
- Be specific in identifying problems or opportunities.
- Offer suggestions for improvement.
- Praise what is genuinely good in the paper.
Context Makes Meaning
The context of writing is what gives writing meaning. The way you structure an argument affects how it will be understood. You have to give the reader enough information and context so that they will understand and follow your point. You have to provide the context for your readers. If you fail to provide enough context the reader is left guessing. If you provide the wrong context, the reader is left confused. If you provide the right context, the reader is persuaded to see it your way.
How you set up an argument affects how it will be perceived.
If you describe Muslims as terrorist, you are setting up a context where they cannot be empathized with.
If protesters are described as criminals and trouble makers, you cannot understand their point of view.
If you describe Mexicans as rapists and murderers, you cannot see them as normal people.
What is your purpose for writing? How can you set up context to suit your purpose?
My purpose for writing is to educate. Sometimes it is enjoyable to write as a form of expression but even in those times I find a lesson to be taught to a reader. With every person living a different life and having a different perspective than the next, it is only fair to say you have most likely overcome situations that I may not have but reading about them would be a great way for me to learn.
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