writing interpretive, narrative, expository, and persuasive
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WritingInterpretive, Narrative, Expository, and Persuasive
Writing Traits2. Organize1. Focus and Coherence A. Clear purpose or thesis B Connecting ideas throughout sentences and paragraphs3. Development of Ideas A. Effective supporting details for thesis or purpose of the essay4. Voice A. Evident writers personality B. Appropriate language and tone for audience5. Conventions A. Rules of grammar, sentence structure, capitalization, punctuation, and spellingA. Distinctive beginning, middle, and end
Interpretive WritingWhen someone wants to explain an aspect or idea of a literary text, they use interpreting writingInterpretive writing gives different perspectives or explanations on a piece of literature
Why do you think there could be different interpretations of a literary work? Why might this be important?
Subject v. ThemeTo write an effective interpretive essay, you must distinguish between the subject and theme of the literary work. The subject describes what the story is about:In the novel Harry Potter and the Sorcerers Stone, the subject is a story about a young boy who discovers he is a famous wizard born into an infamous destiny.The theme is the message about life the story suggests:The theme in the novel Harry Potter and the Sorcerers Stone is that though desire is not necessarily wrong or bad, it can be dangerous when overblown desire makes people lose perspective on life.
Listen to Ray Bradburys There Will Come Soft Rains on page 1000 of your textbook. Pay close attention to possible messages the author is trying present to the audience.Review your subject and theme. Find four specific examples from the text that support your theme. Include a quote and page numbers.
Identifying a ThemeTo help you find an important and meaningful theme of your novel, use these strategies and questions to help guide youStrategiesLook for clues in the titleWhat clues does the title offer about a main theme? Explain.Look in the novel for the authors statement about lifeIdentify a life lesson that emerges in the novelWhat lessons about life do the main characters actions reveal?Are there any symbols that play a significant role in the novel? How do they relate to the main characters actions?
Try identifying the theme of the following short stories. Be sure to identify a message from the author or a life lesson learned from the story.
Identify the subject (what the novel is about) and three possible themes (messages about life) from your literature circle novel with your group and write them in a three column chart. Remember, a novel usually contains multiple themes.Your Turn!NovelSubjectTheme
Interpretive Paragraph AnalysisWhen writing an interpretive paragraph analysis, include some of the following guidelines:In the opening sentence, include the title, author, and subject of the novel.In the body sentences, briefly describe the elements (characters, plot, setting, symbols) of the novel and stylistic devices that reveal the theme in a thorough explanation with direct quotationsIn the closing sentence, state the theme of the novelHelpful Hint: Use rhetorical devices in your writing to engage the audience!
Example Paragraph Analysis Scrooges Awakening In Charles Dickenss A Christmas Carol, the main character, Ebenezer Scrooge, is a hard-hearted man who sees no meaning in Christmas. reveal that he has become more and more focused on his business, shunning contact with friends and relatives. Scrooge is a living in a cocoon of selfishness, blinded to the world beyond his counting house. One Christmas Eve Scrooge follows his usual holiday pattern refusing requests for charity, berating his employee for wanting to take Christmas Day off, and rejecting the holiday dinner invitation of his only nephew. But as darkness falls, the shifts to mysterious images of deceased acquaintances, lost youth, and a prophecy of Scrooges own cold and lonely death. What he sees horrifies him and ironically brings him to his senses. Scrooge learns that Christmas is a yearly reminder about the importance of love and the rewards of generosity and kindness toward ones fellow humans.Flashbacks charactersettingYour turn! Use the story There Will Come Soft Rains to write an interpretive paragraph analysis. Be sure to include elements that reveal the theme.
Embedding QuotesTo include an essay with well-developed quotations, keep in mind these following guidelines:Introduce the quote with reference of the authorSir Winston Churchill once said "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty."In Shakespeares play As You Like It, Touchstone says to Audrey in the Forest of Arden "The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool. Include the quote as part of a larger idea in a sentenceThe idea of the world void of the novel would not be because it has exhausted its powers but because it exists in a world grown alien to it is the basis of an uncreative population. Though including quotes helps build your case with evidence, quote as infrequently as possible to prevent your essay from becoming a parroting of someone elses ideas
Example Embedded Quotes Excerpt from Monsters Are Made, Not Born Mary Shelleys Frankenstein traces the plight of Victor Frankenstein, a scientist tortured by the thought that he is responsible for bringing into the world a hideously deformed, vicious creature. Through Frankenstein, Shelley expresses her fears that science left unchecked could be dangerous. However, in the end that theme is not nearly as moving as the monsters message mistreating others is risky. This theme becomes clear when he states There was none among the myriads of men that existed who would pity or assist me; and should I feel kindness toward my enemies? It is the monsters plight that haunts the reader as the monster recalls that he sought shelter from the weather, but still more from the barbarity of man, and no shelter was given.Use your interpretive analysis paragraph of There Will Come Soft Rains to practice incorporating direct quotes. Include one of the quotes and embed it in the rewritten paragraph.
Interpretive Essay GuidelinesWrite an interpretive essay over a given topic concerning your literature circle novelIntroduction with clearly defined thesis, body with topic sentences and supporting details, and conclusion paragraph summarizing ideasTyped, double-spaced, Times New Roman, 12 font. 1 margins1 - 2 pages in lengthCitations for three direct quotes from the novel supporting the thesis
Read the interpretive analysis example essays Land Values, Sharing Control, and For as Long as We Both Shall Live...
Prewriting2. Choose the theme you will write about1. Brainstorm several possible themes that fit the novel A. Use the title B. Find the authors statement about life C. Identify a life lesson3. Gather details from the story that reveal the theme A. Literary Elements B. Significant events C. Character thoughts4. Identify direct quotes from the novel that support the theme A. Make sure they make sense in context with the theme5. Create your thesis statement A. Combine the element, character, or action with the theme to create the thesis
Gather details from the novel that support your theme by listing literary elements, significant events, and character thoughts and feelings that reveal the theme.
Selecting Direct QuotesUse direct quotations from your novel to emphasize important points of the themeThings to keep in mind when choosing quotes:Purpose (theme) of the essay Does the quote not only relate to the theme, but does it also develop your evidence?Context (presented evidence) of the essayDoes the quote make sense within the context, or the presented evidence of the essay, that you are trying to make?
Your turn! Identify and list 6-8 important quotes that relate to and develop the theme of your essay. Be sure to include the page number!
Creating Your ThesisNow that youve gathered details, you are ready to write your thesis statementThe thesis statement should connect your focus of the novel (elements, characters, or actions) to the themeIn this example, the focus was a character and the theme was tradition vs. change. Together, the thesis statement above was formed to connect the ideas.OkonkwoCharacterbecomes ensnared in the clash of two culturesThemeOkonkwo becomes ensnared in the clash of two cultures.Thesis
OrganizeWhen it comes to organizing your essay, there are four main types to consider:Description explain a topic by listing characteristics, examples, or features by focusing on one thing and its componentsChronological listing items or events in a sequential orderCompare and Contrast explains how two or more things are alike and how they are differentCause and Effect listing one or more causes or events and the resulting consequences by explaining how or why something happened, exists, or worksYour organization is determined primarily by your thesisYour turn! Now that youve decided upon a thesis, you will need to organize your details. Choose your text structure and organize your details in a graphic organizer.
Drafting2. Narrow the start of your essay to your focus.1. Begin your essay with an introduction A. Make sure you clearly identify your focus that includes the main ideas of your essay B Make sure you establish a unique voice3. Begin the body of your essay with your first main idea A. Make sure you follow the text structure for your main ideas4. Explain the supp