Literal: What is going on here? Restate/paraphrase what literally happens in the passage. Is the author describing the setting, commenting on a situation, taking us inside the mind of a character, etc.? Who is speaking? In a short paragraph, provide a little context for and summary of the action that unfolds in the passage that you’ve selected for analysis, while also indicating the point of view from which the story is told.
Stylistic: What do you notice about the author’s craft (his/her use of diction, tone, imagery, symbolism, syntax. sentence rhythm, etc.)? How do these elements contribute to the overall flow and feel of the the work? Work through the passage sentence by sentence, patiently unpacking its meaning. Notice what the words connote and the patterns they form, then jot down your thoughts and reactions. Pause over types of words (concrete or abstract), images (visual, auditory, kinetic, etc.) , figures of speech (similes, metaphors, hyperboles, etc.), and symbolism; irony and ambiguity; contrasts, repetitions, and odd juxtapositions; shifts in tone and/or stylistic register (formal, informal, conversational, colloquial, etc.) Consider the length and structure of individual sentences, as well as the organization of the piece as a whole.
Emotional: What emotions and personal associations does the passage and its delivery evoke? What mood does it create, and why? You may also want to bring up the point of view again and explain how it shapes your perception of events and sympathies for characters within the story. How you feel about an offhand remark, gesture, or action becomes part of its meaning. Conversely, whether or not the narrator is emotionally detached from the events/experiences being described also bears on how you interpret them
Intellectual: What questions does this passage raise for you? What values and assumptions are implicit in it? What themes does it suggest? What are the social, cultural, or political implications of what the author is doing in this passage?
Part I should be 1.5-2 pages (no more than 500 words).
You must include a minimum of five (5) short, but significant, carefully selected details (suggestive words or phrases—not long lines) from the primary source. Quote striking words, phrases, lines, etc. Paraphrase passages you do not wish to quote but that use details important to your point. Summarize long passages in which the main point is important to your claim but the details are not.
Keep in mind that this assignment does NOT call for a contextual analysis—and thus does not require research—so the bulk of your evidence (including historical and cultural references) should come from the text itself. If you do use outside sources (to investigate, for instance, the biographical, historical, or social background of the text), be sure to cite and document them appropriately.
For this assignment, you will use the 2-part format below (“Focused Response” and “Thesis Statement”) to read a representative part of a short-story closely, explicate the language, and place the passage in the context of the story as a whole. In other words, you’ll be considering what the author is doing with the details and language in the passage, why they are important, and how they support your interpretation of the story.
The example of format is attached
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