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Critical Lens Essay Introduction

A brief introduction on how to approach your first "Critical Lens" style essay prompt.
by

Mikeal Basile

on 29 October 2013

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Transcript of Critical Lens Essay Introduction

A brief introduction
The Critical Lens Essay
Read the quotation/lens
Read it.
Decide what you believe it means.
Think of works of literature that
prove or disprove this idea.
Reword the lens and make it your own statement.
Construct the Introduction
The rest of the Essay
For the rest of the essay you simply go about your normal business:
Transition, introduce textual evidence (examples), connect the evidence back to your thesis statement, wrap up the body paragraph with a sumative statement.
Do the above in a second body paragraph
Provide a solid conclusion that emphasizes the points you've made and covered. Try to use emotional or real-world application to mix things up!
Decide if the translation of the quotation agrees or disagrees with examples from works of literature.
CRAFT A THESIS
This is where you decide what how to craft your specific idea you are trying to prove in your essay:
"(insert translation here) is best shown to be (true/false) in (insert works of literature here). This is shown specifically by (insert example one) and (insert example two).
The Lens
"Knowledge and knowing
through suffering"--Aeschylus

Sounds simple, right? But sometimes the lenses can be abstract or you may need to use context clues to decipher what words in the quotation mean.
http://www.iperceptive.com/authors/aeschylus_quotes.html
"Knowledge and knowing through suffering."
Pick out the most important words.
Find synonyms for them
Rephrase the quotation into your own translation.
Feel free to alter the syntax if you want to too (sentence structure)
(after you have done these steps advance to the next slide for an example)
List text titles and their respective themes that support or refute (disprove) your translation.
create a list of texts and themes
create a sub-list for each item in which you choose two specific examples to support or refute the idea you translated.
(advance to the next slide after you have done your own for an example of one)
ex:
"The Rule of Uranus" : THEMES anti-tyranny and the inescapable power of Fate.
Specific examples:
Uranus imprisoning his children-Cyclopes and Hekatonkires because he feared losing his power. They suffer, and learn that tyranny can come from within one's family. (supports)
Uranus loses his power to Cronos after being sliced up into pieces and comes to discover that Fate can not be escaped. (supports)
The thesis statement is where you let the reader of the essay know that you are either supporting or refuting the "translation of the critical lens." When writing the actual essay please DO NOT refer to your translation as such (use the actual ideas and words and not "the translation" or "the critical lens"). This will help you to avoid narrating your essay.
knowledge: wisdom, learning, information, ideas, concepts
knowing: application of ideas, understanding, realizing, feeling, comprehension
through: by, by way of, use,
suffering: torture, torment, pain, discomfort, displeasure, ill-feeling
So if we put all that together we have: "Torment and pain are ways we gain wisdom."
Sample thesis statement:
"The Rule of Uranus" and "The Rule of Cronus" both support the idea that pain leads to wisdom. This is shown by Uranus's mutilation and Cronus's vomiting of his children.
This acts as the guide or map for the rest of the essay. The intro should let us know WHAT & WHERE & WHEN.
The body paragraphs will tell us HOW & WHY.
Start with a B.G.S. ATT (about the topic)
for ex. If the C.L. is about luck make a statement about what luck means or what luck is like in general. Or perhaps what luck is "usually" like if the essay is different from normal expectations.
Next introduce the critical lens statement itself (this should be a natural flow thanks to your B.G.S. being related to the topic
Translate the quotation into your understanding of it (this shows the reader that you understand the lens enough to put interpret it and put it into your own words = analysis and synthesis)
State whether or not the idea is true or false (evaluation)
Introduce the texts you will use (application, analysis, synthesis, & evaluation)
Provide us with your THESIS statement (knowledge, comprehension, application, analysis, synthesis, and evaluation)
Tip/Hint: Sometimes you can combine a few of these steps; each step doesn't require its own sentence. You can be creative in your approach as well as this is NOT the only way to write a critical lens essay...but it is a way that will give you some success.
Advance to the next frame to see an example of an introductory paragraph.
Learning is not always an easy thing. Aeschylus once said, "Knowledge and knowing through suffering." Essentially he means that torment and pain are ways we gain wisdom. According to the Ancient Greek myths "The Rule of Uranus" and "The Rule of Cronus" this statement is true. The idea of pain leading to enlightenment is best shown when Uranus is dismembered and when Cronus disgorges his children.
Now you might want to check out the Critcial Lens "HOW TO" Prezi for more information, ideas, notes, and examples! Happy exam review!
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