Annotation with Keyterm

This assignment asks you to combine the methods you’ve learned in the 240-sequence to represent a preliminary analysis of a text that you might use in your honors thesis. To do that:

  • Copy a two-page spread from a literary text that seems to warrant further analysis, and
  • Identify a keyterm you could use to analyze the text and write that at the top of the page;
  • Copy a two-page spread from the theoretical text that gives you your keyterm;
  • Represent your thinking about both texts by annotating them heavily.

Your annotations should not work toward a thesis or argument, but they should surpass mere summary to analyze the text critically. They will sometimes draw connections between the literary text and the theoretical articles we’ve read.

Then, type up your annotations to include any commentary and analysis that doesn’t fit on the page. Your typed annotation will be chronological, beginning at the top of the left page and ending at the bottom of the right.

Finally, write a 3-4 page reflection on the set of your annotations, analyzing the insights you’ve gleaned about them separately, and suggesting the ways you might learn more about them by reading them together.

To decide which keyterm to choose, ask yourself what themes emerged for you as you annotated the text, and what you learned about the text—or about yourself as a reader of it!—by looking so closely at it. Then ask: do any of the keyterms that you’ve learned so far seem relevant to these insights? How might your analysis of these two pages contribute to your analysis of the literary text as a whole, or to your understanding of the keyterm? Read the literary text through the “lens” of this keyterm, and show how you understand them both better by thinking about them together.

You will submit these three things: the copied page with your notes; the typed annotations that are more extended; and the 3-4 page reflection.



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