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Home Notebook for Topics in Literature: Imaginary Worlds (Spring 2005) Notebook for Effective Writing I (Spring 2004) ENG Q20: Basic Writing (Fall 2004)
Notebook for Topics in Literature: Imaginary Worlds (Spring 2005)
Notebook for Effective Writing I (Spring 2004)
ENG Q20: Basic Writing (Fall 2004)
Objectives: (1) to choose, from among the ones presented, a form for expressive writing: the memoir, the open letter, or the response to literature; (2) to craft a message about personal experience that will appeal to a public audience; (3) to practice techniques for generating ideas (brainstorming, freewriting, mind-mapping); (4) to practice revision, and in revising to consider the larger rhetorical situation: the ways in which the needs of the writer, the subject, and the audience can all be successfully accommodated in a piece of writing; (5) to practice careful editing and proofreading.
Directions: Choosing one of the genres we discussed in class-the memoir, the open letter, or the response to literature-write a 3-5 page essay that explores, explains, discovers, describes, or recreates in a compelling way some aspect of your self, your identity. The paper should be written in a first person point of view to go along with its expressive purpose.
the topic. The materials we've discussed in class all express ideas related
to the broad topic of "IDENTITY." By telling stories, they explore
ideas related to the important question of how we come to define ourselves,
the ways we define ourselves, the process of defining ourselves.
Generating ideas about "Identity"
What is "identity"? Is this a question that's ever troubled you or that you've ever given thought to? What might be the cause of an "identity crisis" and who might be likely to have one? In the absence of "crisis," why might it be useful to explore the topic of identity?
Who defines who you are? Do you define yourself all by yourself, or do you have help? Can a person define oneself without help? Who have been your powerful influences-parents, friends, community, the "larger culture," the shopping mall, your political leaders, the mass media?
What roles do you play in your everyday life that help you define who you are? Which of these roles do you find most influential? Have you ever assumed a role that was an uncomfortable fit at first but which in the end had a profound effect on your sense of who you are? Do you find yourself burdened by any of your roles?
Do you see yourself as essentially an individual or as essentially like everyone else? Are you more comfortable on your own, or being "part of the crowd"? Which do you think is considered more "normal"? (Why?) Is it possible to "do your own thing" and still feel accepted? Is it ever a source of conflict, a source of trouble when you have the desire to go against the grain?
What do you consider the most "authentic" aspect(s) of your identity? Consider "authentic" to mean that aspect or those aspects of your self which haven't been imposed on you from outside (pre-packaged and ready to wear), but which you developed more intimately, either following your own inner resources or the example of those close to you.
Questions? Contact me.
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