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Write an analysis of a text (journal article, magazine article,

Write an analysis of a text (journal article, magazine article, editorial, speech, book, or website) that breaks down the text you are analyzing and shows how it works to inform, persuade, or entertain an audience. Your analysis should read the text carefully and also offer insight into how the text adds new perspective to a particular cultural or social issue that is important to you.

CR Icon Pencil.png Assignment

Analysis is “the act of breaking something down to see how it works” (CEL 153). Analyzing written texts is a common task that requires us to think critically as readers and make connections between what texts are saying and how they are saying it. The goal of analysis is not to evaluate or judge, but rather to uncover “how texts work” (CEL 153).

For this Analysis Essay, you will break down the source text you have chosen to write about, analyzing the context, subtext and appeals used by the author of the source text. Following the guidelines in the CEL (Ch. 6), you will focus both on textual analysis (close reading of the text itself) and contextual analysis (analyzing the text within its larger cultural context). Overall, your Analysis Essay should offer a clear, coherent, and detailed understanding of how the text works, breaking down the writer’s choices and explaining how the writer makes the issue relevant, interesting, and emotionally connected to a community of readers. 

CR Icon Page.png Format and Length

  • Format: Typed, double-spaced, submitted as a word-processing document.
    12 point, text-weight font, 1-inch margins.
  • Length: 1500-2000 words (approx. 6-8 pages)
  • Value: This assignment will be graded out of 100 possible points, and will be part of the Unit 3 assignment group, worth 30% of the grade for the course.
  • Overview: in the Analysis Essay, students will analyze, or break down and explain a source text. This analysis will show students’ original thinking and will also offer insight into how one or more social issues are understood by particular communities. 

CR Icon Question.png Objectives and Questions

These questions help to guide discussion and set up the objectives for this unit.

  • What is analysis? What is the purpose and value of analysis in helping myself and others understand issues that are relevant to us?
  • How can I use analysis to explain and break down complex ideas into parts that audiences can understand?
  • How can writing analysis help me clarify my own thinking and uncover important issues that I might otherwise miss?
  • How can I use writing to focus and organize my thoughts, ideas, and main points about issues that are important to me?
  • How can I write ethically — that is, with careful consideration of the ways I am understanding texts and communicating their value to others?

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