This exercise is designed to help you break down a text and locate it within the greater context of the course syllabus.
Please focus on the elements of the argumentation. First, isolate the structure and rhetorical strategies used here. Then, place the reading in the context of the course as a whole.
Who is the author? What’s the title?
What is the author’s thesis/argument(s)?
How does the author make his/her case? How is the text organized? Is the evidence persuasive? Does it support the conclusions?
Could alternative conclusions be drawn? Could the author have approached the topic from another perspective? Are some issues neglected? What assumptions does the author make?
What is the title of the lecture for which this reading is assigned? How does this text fit the theme?
What is the unit in the syllabus for which reading is assigned? How does this text fit? How does the reading relate to the course summary and the professor’s stated goals?