Four paragraphs of seven to nine sentences each (Roughly 850 Words)
“The Look” by Larry Lenha pp. 224-28
Your essay will have an introductory paragraph (Par. 1), summary paragraph (Par. 2), response paragraph (Par. 3), and concluding paragraph (Par. 4). **Four total paragraphs**
Choose one of the assigned reading. Choose a reading that intrigued you or for which you had a strong response either agreeing or disagreeing with the author. The purpose of the assignment is to help you summarize an article and evaluate the article.
A summary/ response first summarizes what you’ve read and then gives your reaction to the text. Keep in mind the directions from Everyone’s an Author (EA) “A summary uses just enough information to record the main points you wish to summarize” and “captures the main ideas in your own words” (Lunsford 191).
Keep in mind that in a summary (paragraph 2) you should identify the key points in the text, find the essential evidence supporting those points, and explain the contents concisely and fairly. Leave out your opinions when summarizing concisely and fairly and use neutral verbs, such as states, asserts, or concludes. You should include the name of the work and the author, but you should state the summary of the work in your own words. The summary should probably be no more than 100 to 200 words.
- Your response should be focused and have a thesis, topic sentences, and a central position.
- Your reaction (paragraph 3) should include one of the following:
- A response to what a text says, in which case you might consider these questions:
- What does the writer claim?
- What reasons or evidence does he or she provide to support the claim?
- What parts of the text do you agree with? Is there anything you disagree with—and if so, why?
- Does the writer represent any views other than his or her own? If not, what other perspectives should be considered?
- Are there any aspects of the topic that the writer overlooks or ignores?
- A response on the way a text is written, in which case you might consider these questions:
- What is the writer’s message? Is there an explicit statement of that message?
- How well has the writer communicated the message?
- How does the writer support what he or she says: by citing facts or statistics? By quoting experts? By noting person experiences? Are you persuaded?
- Are there any words, phrases, or sentences that you find notable, and that contribute to the text’s overall effect?
- How does the text’s design affect your response to it?
- A reflection on your own reaction to the text, in which case you might consider these questions:
- How did the text affect you personally?
- Is there anything in the text that really got your attention? If so, what?
- Do any parts of the text provoke an emotional reaction—make you laugh or cry, make you uneasy? What prompted that response?
- Does the text bring to mind any memories or past experiences? Can you see anything related to you and your life in the text?
- Does the text remind you of any other texts?
- Does the text support (or challenge) any of your beliefs? How?
- Has the reading of this text given you any new ideas or insights?