When you return from Spring Break, I would like you to have identified the text you want to write about for Essay Two.Please obtain a physical copy of this text and bring it with you to class on Tuesday, 4/05. Please also write a brief note (500 words or so) in which you explain what interests you‚what draws you to writing about—this text.
Please do not tell me that you are interested in this text because of its subject or topic. We can assume that. What I need to know now, what you need to define for yourself, is what interests you in the approach of this text takes to its topic. Think in terms of how more than what, of authors more than characters or subjects.
And so, for instance, if you were to decide to write about the recent movie Martian, a good reason for doing so would not be that you are interested in the topic of space exploration. Rather, you’d want to say something about what the author of the film—in this case, its director, Ridley Scott—says about space exploration, isolation, adventure. You’d want, that is, to write about how this film feels different from your everyday space epic.
In your next piece,(p6), I will ask you to locate some critical texts—other writers who have also commented on your focal text (the Statlers and Waldorfs to your Fozzie Bear). So you will need to pick a text that others have written about. But you don’t have to worry about those other critics just yet. But you do need to define, in fairly specific terms, why your text might be an interesting focus of an essay. As a spur to get you to do so, let me add this technical requirement to your writing: You must quote and analyze at least two different passages from your focal text. You should not quote simply in order to summarize your text. Quote passages instead that suggest what draws you to this text, what you find intriguing or provoking or compelling about it—and then explain why you have chosen those passages.
Please post your p5 to your Google Drive folder by 11:00 am on Monday, 4/04. Include a full citation for your focal text (including a URL if it is on the web), and make sure you identify—by page number or time stamp—the passages you quote from it. Again, please bring a copy of this text with you to class on Tuesday, 4/05.
Don’t think of this piece as a draft of your second essay. What you need to do is gather materials for that essay. What’s really important, then, is not that you produce polished prose for this assignment, but that you locate a text you want to work with over the next several weeks—and that you think you will have some interesting things to say about.