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Five Analytical Moves

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Jen Phillis

on 30 January 2013

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Transcript of Five Analytical Moves

Analysis "figure[s] out what something means, why it is as it is and does what it does" (4). The five moves help. 5 Analytic Moves Move 1:
Suspend Judgment Move 2:
Define Significant Parts and How They're Related Move 4:
Look for patterns Move 3:
Make the Implicit Explicit Move 5:
Be Recursive! Don't immediately respond to what you encounter by deciding if you like or dislike it. First, "seek to understand" the subject. Only after understanding it, can you determine how to judge it. What are the subject's "defining parts"? To ask it differently, what makes this poem different from other poems?

How do they parts relate, both within the poem and to the subject (poetry, the world the poem describes) as whole? What is implied, but not directly stated, by the poem? What repeats?

What is in opposition?

What stands out or doesn't fit? Although the moves are numbered, you don't get to Move 4 and stop: you need to keep going back to find significant parts, understand how they relate, and ask what they mean.
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