C0CC150: Portfolio I - Part A
Summarizing an Article and Responding to its Points
Purpose: Your purpose for writing this essay will be to accurately represent and thoughtfully respond to a writer's ideas. To prepare for this assignment, we will read a range of articles which address racial and cultural issues precipitated by Hurricane Katrina. As we read and discuss these articles, you will practice various strategies for summarizing and responding. Then, you will revise a draft on one of the following articles into a polished essay:
- "Wake Me When It's Over" by Gerald Early
- "New Orleans Blues" from The Nation
- "American Dilemma" by James Q. Wilson
Your audience is yourself, your instructor and your classmates. Although your readers are familiar with the text you've chosen, you should thoroughly represent the writer's main points and provide textual evidence throughout.
- " Your summary should accurately and objectively represent the author's purpose and main ideas and rhetorical context (about one page). It should also adhere to the guidelines for academic summary covered in class.
- Your response (about two pages) should:
- Provide a clear thesis claim in which you agree and/or disagree with the author's main idea(s) or argument.
- Focus on 1 - 2 ideas. Decide which points you most want to make in your thesis and stick to developing those points thoroughly. If you try to cover too much material, your essay will feel scattered and undeveloped.
- Develop your thesis claim with logical reasoning and substantial evidence (such as personal experience, cultural observations, and textual references).
- Begin your essay with a summary of the article and then lead into your response. Although writers have successfully combined summary and response, it's best to keep them separate for this assignment. Clarify where the summary ends and where the response begins by shifting your tone from that of an objective reporter to that of a subjective responder and by providing a clear thesis claim to indicate the start of your response.
- To improve credibility, avoid distracting spelling and grammar errors.
- Type your essay in a readable, 12-point font and double-space it. Submit your essay in a folder along with any other contents specified in class.
900 - 1,200 words (3 - 4 pages)
See Syllabus for due dates for TR and MWF
10% of your final grade
*For assistance with this essay, visit The Writing Center (in Eddy 6) or come by office hours.