1.5 pages Writing Essay

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Task (MLA format):

Compose an analytical response (at least 550 words, not including quote) to one of our secondary sources (See this link:https://science.sciencemag.org/content/301/5629/52) in which you do the following:

Reading : Chew, Matthew K., and Manfred D. Laubichler. “Natural Enemies: Metaphor or Misconception?” Science, vol. 301, no. 5629, 2003, pp. 52–53. Link:https://science.sciencemag.org/content/301/5629/52

Paragraph 1 [main goal: summarize the reading]

      1. Who is the audience for this piece of writing?
      2. What is the purpose of this text?
      3. What context is this author writing in?
      4. What questions are guiding them? Then, state what you think are the significant questions the author is using to guide their inquiry and trying to answer in their article.

Paragraph 2 [main goal: present the quote and discuss a key word]

1. Select a clear, interesting passage (~ 2-3 sentences long) where you see the author making an interesting claim, explaining their logic, providing a point of evidence to support their ideas, or exploring one of their guiding questions. Be sure that the quote you select is both interesting and long enough to give you plenty to think and write about.

2. Now, clearly present this passage as a quote, doing the following so that the quote is smoothly integrated into the sentences around it:

            • introduce the author by full name [ex: Jon Cohen]
            • tell your reader the title of the text [ex: “How a Horror Story Haunts Science”]
            • provide some context about where the quote appears in the text [ex: when summarizing the enduring “myth” of Frankenstein, Cohen writes: “QUOTE”]
            • provide clear citation immediately after the quote [ex: (Cohen 75).]
            • provide a brief summary of what the quote says [no more than 2-3 sentences]

3. To kick off your analysis of the passage (which you will continue in P3), identify a key word in the quote above. Look the word up in the Oxford English Dictionary ( www.oed.com). Provide the definition of the word as it is used in the passage as a direct quote. Ex: The Oxford English Dictionary defines “word” as “definition” (citation).

            • You may also consider bringing in other meanings of the word that could shed interesting light on how the author uses it or to enhance your own analysis.
            • See Hansson’s “Science and Pseudoscience” for a great example of how to integrate definitions into your sentences and how to use the OED to kickstart your own analysis.

4. Discuss how the word shapes or influences the meaning of the passage you’ve provided (aim for about 100 words). How does the key word relate to their inquiry, argument, or evidence?

Paragraph 3 [main goal: analyze the quote in detail]

Move into more detailed analysis about the passage, focusing on how this specific quote answers one or more of the questions you identified above. This is the most important part of this activity (aim for at least 200 words). Things to consider here:

          • how do they advance their argumentative purpose in this passage?
          • what point is this passage making?
          • what is important, interesting, confusing, or weird about it?
          • is there more to say about they key word’s significance?
          • what can you say about the quote that goes beyond the passage or reading and draws on your own ideas?

Paragraph 4 [main goal: discuss questions you thought of while reading/writing]

Finally, list some questions the text prompted for you as you read it and briefly explain: How did the text prompt these questions? How are these questions related to your own interests? What ideas might you be interested in exploring in Essay 1?

Grading Criteria

  • Assignment demonstrates careful engagement with a relevant passage (summary and analysis of textual evidence) from one course reading (required or optional text).
  • Assignment provides the content for each paragraph as directed above.
  • Assignment meets word requirements (at least 550 words total, excluding quotation).
  • See Grading Rubric for more information.
  • Grading Rubric:
    WR122 Evidence Analysis 1
    Criteria Ratings
    This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeP1: Summarizes the Reading as directed

    Full Marks
    No Marks
    This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeP2: Presents Quote and Engages with Key Word Using OED as directed

    Full Marks
    No Marks
    This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeP3: Carefully Analyzes Quotation in Detail as directed

    Full Marks
    No Marks
    This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeP4: Discusses Questions Prompted while Reading/Writing as directed

    Full Marks
    No Marks
    This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomePaper at least 500 words total, excluding quotation

    Full Marks
    No Marks


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