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These steps may seem overly mechanical, but they show that reading, at its best, is a recursive process, a form of discovery that involves going back and back again to the same lines.
"' English studies' is founded on the notion of close reading, and while there was a period in the late 1970s and early 1980s when this idea was frequently disparaged, it is undoubtedly true that nothing of any interest can happen in this subject without close reading."(Peter Barry, "We all begin as close readers.
Even before we learn to read, the process of being read aloud to, and of listening, is one in which we are taking in one word after another, one phrase at a time, in which we are paying attention to whatever each word or phrase is transmitting.
(As discussed below, close reading is a skill that's encouraged by the new Common Core State Standards Initiative in the U.
S.) One form of close reading is rhetorical analysis.
Texts are always packed, by the reader’s prior knowledge and expectations, before they are unpacked.
(The following text incorporates language and ideas from Lindsay Reckson, Alyssa Harad, and Phillip Barrish at The University of Texas at Austin Department of Rhetoric and Writing.) Beyond superficial reading, close reading techniques help you read actively and critically.What a text says cannot be separated from it says it.In high school classes, students usually are trained to read for "what the author is saying," sometimes pausing to note "symbols," "foreshadowing," "metaphors and similes," and words that convey "tone." Reading on the college level requires skills to "digest" large amounts of text into manageable chunks, to extrapolate it, meditate on it, shuttle back and forth between it and larger contexts. Students are often deeply surprised by just how slowly it is possible to read and just how much they discover when they do read slowly.The more we read, the more we comprehend, the more likely we are to discover new ways to read, each one tailored to the reason why we are reading a particular book."(Francine Prose, In its analyses, new criticism . A central term often used synonymously with new criticism is close reading. "The principal object of close reading is to unpack the text.It denotes the meticulous analysis of these elementary features, which mirror larger structures of a text."(Mario Klarer, "[A] rhetorical text appears to hide--to draw attention away from--its constitutive strategies and tactics. Close readers linger over words, verbal images, elements of style, sentences, argument patterns, and entire paragraphs and larger discursive units within the text to explore their significance on multiple levels."(James Jasinski, "The critic's job is to uncover these meanings in such a way that people have an 'aha!Consequently, close readers have to employ some mechanism for piercing the veil that covers the text so as to see how it works. ' moment in which they suddenly agree to the reading, the meanings the critic suggests suddenly come into focus. "Robinson uses examples from Langston Hughes' work, especially rich in figurative language, and refers specifically to his poem, ' The Negro Speaks of Rivers.' Together, she and her students investigate each line, each stanza, piece by piece, leading to deeper levels of understanding.The standard of success for the close reader who is also a critic is therefore the "In the classroom, Robinson introduces the overall purpose of the reading assignment and then has students work independently and in partners and groups to share what they have learned. She plays an interview with him, assigns a five-paragraph essay on the Harlem Renaissance. and it applies to political journalism as well as to the reading of poetry.In college, you are asked for deeper connections and comprehension with complex texts."Close reading" is the ability to devote intimate, informed attention to the language and details of a text.Word by word is how we learn to hear and then read, which seems only fitting, because it is how the books we are reading were written in the first place."The more we read, the faster we can perform that magic trick of seeing how the letters have been combined into words that have meaning. focuses on phenomena such as multiple meaning, paradox, irony, word play, puns, or rhetorical figures, which--as the smallest distinguishable elements of a literary work--form interdependent links with the overall context.