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Chapter 10: Critical Analysis. Efficient and Flexible Reading, 8/e Kathleen T. McWhorter. In this chapter you will learn:. To grasp connotative meanings. To make inferences. To distinguish fact from opinion. To recognize generalizations. To identify tone. To identify an author’s purpose.

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chapter 10 critical analysis
Chapter 10:Critical Analysis

Efficient and Flexible Reading, 8/eKathleen T. McWhorter

2007 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Longman Publishers

in this chapter you will learn
In this chapter you will learn:
  • To grasp connotative meanings.
  • To make inferences.
  • To distinguish fact from opinion.
  • To recognize generalizations.
  • To identify tone.
  • To identify an author’s purpose.
  • To recognize bias.
  • To understand figurative language.

2007 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Longman Publishers

denotative and connotative meanings
Denotative and Connotative Meanings
  • The meaning of a word as indicated by the dictionary is its denotative meaning.
  • The additional meanings of a word is its connotative meaning.
    • He walked home. (denotative)
    • He strolled home.
    • He swaggered home.
    • He lumbered home.

2007 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Longman Publishers

making inferences
Making Inferences

Inference:

  • Inference is part of the reasoning process.
  • It is a logical connection that you draw between what you observe and WHAT YOU DO NOT KNOW.

Strategies for Inference:

  • Question, challenge, and analyze the facts.
  • Look for what ideas the facts suggest when they are considered all together.

2007 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Longman Publishers

making inferences as you read
Making Inferences as You Read
  • Be sure to understand the literal meaning.
  • Ask yourself questions such as:
    • What is the author trying to suggest from the stated information?
    • What do all the facts and ideas point toward?
    • For what purpose did the author include these facts and details?
  • Use clues provided by the writer.
  • Consider the author’s purpose.
  • Verify your inference with the facts.

2007 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Longman Publishers

making inferences as you read6
Making Inferences as You Read

Example 1:

In the mirror John Bell noticed that his hair was graying at the temples. As he picked up the morning paper, he realized that he could no longer see well without his glasses. Looking at the hands holding the paper he saw that they were wrinkled.

The correct inference to make is that the character is realizing that he is aging.

2007 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Longman Publishers

slide7

Making Inferences as You Read

Example 2:

Their actions, on this sunny afternoon, have been carefully organized and rehearsed. Their work began weeks ago with a leisurely drive through a quiet residential area. While driving, they noticed particular homes that seemed isolated and free of activity. Over the next week, similar drives were taken at different times of day. Finally, a house was chosen and their work began in earnest. Through careful observation and several phone calls, they learned where the occupants worked. They studied the house, noting entrances and windows and anticipating the floor plan. Finally, they were ready to act. Phone calls made that morning confirmed that the occupants were at work.

The most logical conclusion to draw would be a

daytime burglary is about to occur.

2007 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Longman Publishers

distinguishing between fact and opinion
Distinguishing Between Fact and Opinion

Facts: Statements that can be verified (proven to be true or false).

  • Example:
    • The average American adult spends 25 hours per week on housework.

Opinions: Statements that express feelings, attitudes, or beliefs (neither true or false)

  • Example:
    • By the year 2020 tobacco will be illegal, just as various other drugs are currently illegal.

2007 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Longman Publishers

distinguishing between fact and opinion9
Signal Words/Phrases for Opinions

it is believed

in my view

it is likely that

seemingly one explanation is

apparently

presumable

in my opinion

this suggests

possibly

Informed Opinion

Opinion of an expert or authority

Example:

Ralph Nader’s opinion on consumer rights

Opinion of a textbook author

Distinguishing Between Fact and Opinion

2007 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Longman Publishers

recognizing generalizations
Recognizing Generalizations

A generalization is a statement that is made about a large group or a class of items based on observation of one experience with a part of that group or class.

2007 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Longman Publishers

recognizing generalizations11
Recognizing Generalizations

Examples of Generalizations:

  • All college freshmen are confused and disoriented during their first week on campus.
  • Most parents are concerned for the happiness of their children.
  • Psychology instructors are interested in the psychology of learning.
  • College students are more interested in social life than scholarship.

A generalization represents the writer’s judgment about

a particular set of facts.

2007 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Longman Publishers

identifying tone
Identifying Tone
  • A speaker’s tone of voice often reveals his or her attitude and feelings and contributes to the overall message.
  • The tone is achieved through word choice and stylistic features such as sentence pattern and length.
  • Examples of emotions communicated through tone:
    • cheerful
    • hate
    • admiration
    • disgust
    • gratitude
    • frustration

2007 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Longman Publishers

identifying tone13
Identifying Tone

Ways to identify tone:

  • How does the author feel about the subject?
  • How are these feelings revealed?

See Table 10.1 in your book for a list of words to describe tone.

2007 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Longman Publishers

identifying author s purpose
Identifying Author’s Purpose
  • Who is the intended audience?
  • What is the tone?
  • What is the point of view?
  • Does the writer try to prove

anything about the subject?

If so, what?

2007 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Longman Publishers

recognizing bias
Recognizing Bias
  • Analyze connotative meanings.
  • Notice the descriptive language.
  • Analyze the tone.
  • Look for opposing viewpoints.

2007 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Longman Publishers

recognizing bias16
Recognizing Bias

Slanted Writing: Slanted writing attempts to persuade or push the reader in a particular direction—usually toward a particular belief, attitude, or action.

Version 1: The Congressman flipped open her notebook and began her speech in her usual flat tone. She moved mechanically from point to point, dwelling on each longer than necessary.

Version 2: The Congressman climbed energetically to the podium and began her speech. She moved methodically from point to point, taking care that each point was well understood before moving to the next.

2007 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Longman Publishers

using figurative language
Using Figurative Language
  • Figurative language is a way of describing something that makes sense on an imaginative level.
  • Examples:
    • The judge decided to get to the heart of the matter.
    • The federal government is draining taxpayers of any accumulated wealth.

2007 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Longman Publishers

critical thinking tip 10 slanted writing
Critical Thinking Tip #10: Slanted Writing
  • Slanted writing is a technique used to persuade. Slanted writing attempts to push the reader in a particular direction—usually toward a specific belief, attitude or action.
  • Slanted writing employs two techniques:
    • Use of words to create a favorable or unfavorable impression.
    • Selection of details to create the desired impression and omission of those that do not give the desired impression.

2007 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Longman Publishers

summary
Summary
  • What is critical analysis?
  • What are denotative and connotative meanings?
  • What is involved in making an inference?
  • How can facts be distinguished from opinion?
  • What are generalizations?

2007 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Longman Publishers

summary20
Summary
  • How can you detect a writer’s tone?
  • How can you identify an author’s purpose?
  • How can you detect bias in a piece of writing?
  • What is figurative language?

2007 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Longman Publishers

go electronic
Go Electronic

http://www.ablongman.com/mcwhorter

2007 Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Longman Publishers