Author’s Purpose and Tone
1. Author’s Purpose • Definition: The reason the author wrote the passage. (why?/ porque?) • Tip: Author’s purpose is usually found in the beginning and/ or end of the passage
Possible Purposes • To inform • Encyclopedias, phonebooks, statistics, news reports, history textbooks • To persuade • Political brochures, advertising, TV commercials, Editorial section of newspaper • To entertain • Comic strips, fictional novels Author shows NO emotion/ gives NO opinions Author uses words like “should” ; generally tells the reader what to do Often tells a story using characters and a plot Remember, it isn’t what you get out of it, it is what the author intended
As it grows older and larger, the anemone fish changes from male to female. • We must begin to teach vegetarianism because it is the way to end world hunger. • Angora sweaters are made from the long, silky hair of Angora goats or rabbits. • If you’re not wearing Wright brand shoes, you’re wearing the wrong ones.
My experience and education make me an excellent candidate for this job • Adult stem cell research should be funded by the government. • With funerals so expensive, I’d better not die soon; I can’t afford to. • Thomas Jefferson promised his wife he would never remarry; she died at thirty-three, and he kept his promise. • Eating disorders fall into several categories based on their symptoms • Unless citizens work together to stop developers from turning parkland into parking lots, our children won’t recognize a tree or a blade of grass.
2. Author’s Tone • Definition: this is the attitude that an author has towards the topic he/she is writing about. • Use the author’s choice of words to figure out the author’s tone.
Some possible tones: • Optimistic/pessimistic • Matter of fact / objective , • mournful, • comical, • factual , • Sarcastic/ ironic • (see pg 271-272/326-327)
Optimistic/ Pessimistic Pessimistic Optimistic
What is the author’s tone? • George and Martha Washington never had children of their own, but Martha had two children from a previous marriage. Also, after her son Jacky died at the age of twenty-seven, George and Martha adopted two of his children. • A. critical • B. objective • C. loving purpose?
What is the author’s tone? • The people in the apartment across the hallway are good communicators. When they have a party, they communicate it to us by turning the music up so loud that we can’t hear our own TV. And when they have an argument, they let us know about that too, by yelling at the top of their lungs. • A. straightforward • B. sarcastic • C. cruel
Time is dangerous. If you don’t control it, it will control you! If you don’t make it work for you, it will work against you. You must become the master of time, not the servant. In other words, as a college student, time management will be your number-one problem. • What is the author’s purpose? • What is the Main Idea? • What is the pattern?
As a high school principal, I strongly believe that there shouldn’t be any penalties for students who are caught cheating. After all, everyone does it. Besides, cheating in school will help prepare these same students to cheat on their employers later on, to cheat on their spouses when they marry, and to cheat on their taxes. In fact we could help students even more if we offered a course on how to cheat. • What is the author’s purpose? • What is the author’s tone? • What is the author’s Main Idea?