Critical Analysis Assignment – English III AP Objective 1 – To find one critical essay that presents a new, intriguing, fresh and/or controversial stance toward Huckleberry Finn. This piece of criticism must be lengthy enough to sustain an intense analysis. Be sure to photocopy the essay and copy all pertinent bibliographic information. Completed in library Monday, September 11 and Tuesday, September 12 Objective 2 – To analyze the essay: to try to understand it better by breaking it down into its component parts, studying those parts, and seeing how they relate to each other and to the work as a whole. (Details to follow…) Completed Tuesday, September12 and Wednesday, September 13 Objective 3 – Based upon the findings of your analysis, to assess, critique, or evaluate the validity of the critic’s argument. Completed Thursday, September14 Objective 4 – To prepare your assessment in essay form, using MLA documentation. Completed Friday, September 15 – Monday, September 18 Due Tuesday, September 19 at beginning of class Details for Objective 2 – Analysis First read, and reread your selected criticism. Once you have a basic understanding, annotate the selection. To help your comprehension, highlight the following in three separate colors: *Claim(s)/Thesis, if directly stated. If implied, write the claim in the margin of your photocopied pages. *Main Points used to support the claim. (Usually stated, explained and developed in separate paragraphs or groups of paragraphs *Evidence or support for main points. (Examples, quotes, statistics, personal anecdotes or stories…) Having established what the critic is arguing, consider next how the argument is developed. Make notes in the margins regarding the following: *Go back to the claim, and consider the author’s purpose: is it to argue a point or to explore a certain idea? *Consider the mode of development: does the critic use narration, description, definition, explanation, cause and effect, comparison and contrast, process analysis, classification, or some combination of modes? *Analyze the order in which the thesis, main points, and support are organized: is this information arranged from general to specific, chronologically by the events in the novel, simple to complex, or in order of importance? Spend time, as well, examining the critic’s style and its relationship to the argument. *Examine the author’s use of word choice, language, and syntax, and tone. Remember, tone is closely related to the author’s purpose.
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