High School Literature Analysis
– Okay, guys, we’re
going to continue with what we’ve been
talking about a little bit and hopefully making this
make a little bit more sense. We’re going to hit again
supporting your determination for a response with specific
textual evidence and to do that I think today
we’ll make it all come home. Some of you did really
well on the pretest. Others had a little
bit more difficulty. That’s why you got a couple of pretests,
because I was trying to hone in on what we really were
trying to figure out, what I was trying to figure out
and how I can better support you. Today we’re going to determine
tone of nonfiction text by evaluating the
effective word choice. We’ve got five different articles
of Malcolm X’s assassination that we did some background
on the past couple of days and then whatever you decide is
your determination of tone like, if it’s playful or serious,
you need to pull out your specific textual evidence from
that piece and verify that, right? That you can just say this is where
in the article I say it’s playful or that it’s serious. This is
where I think the author is giving us that type of tone. So let’s review real quick.
What is tone? Somebody? Antonio. – In like, the attitude the
writer has towards the subject. – Good. Here you’re going
to see a lot of attitude. You’ll notice on the board…we’re going to go
over one article together, okay? Break it down so you understand
what you’re going to do with the other four at your
groups. And part of that is can you see the author, right? Definitely their perception of it.
You will kind of see that person. There are no names
on these articles, which I think makes
it more interesting. We don’t know if it’s male or female.
We don’t know who this person was. We’d have to go back and research
who actually wrote the article. Here, we’re going to read
and analyze one account of Malcolm X’s assassination
together as an example. If you need highlighters,
I’ve got a bunch of markers here that you can grab one if you don’t
and just pass those around. I want you, as we go
through this together, to highlight the
words that grab you. Think about a synonym you
could substitute for that word. How does that affect the tone
of the sentence or the piece? We’re going to break it up. We’re going to do the first
one as actually together. See what you marked and
we’re going to discuss it and then we’re going to do the
rest of that article, all right? With that, again,
how does it affect the tone? How does it change it? What is the overall tone of the article
once we’ve read the whole thing and you go back and
review all of your markings and kind of truly evaluating
what is this author, how is it coming across me their tone,
what would you say that is? Is it serious? Is it playful? Is it very, really doesn’t have any emotional tie to it?
Overly emotional? What is it? Okay?
Let’s give you the articles clip. As usual, this goes in
your journal. You’ve got a new entry that’s
kind of backdated, but you’re going to do tone and
word choice for the five Malcolm X articles. Your page number will correspond
to wherever you are now in your notebook for this entry. They may be different from everybody
else in your group, all right? Okay. If we look, you have…
The first four of these are copied from analyzing
different accounts of assassination of Malcolm X and
thinking critically. I always do this with my college course.
We always do this piece. I like it a whole lot. And that’s by John Chaffee.
And then on the back, the last one is Dan Curtland,
it’s how the language really works, the fundamentals of critical
reading and effective writing, the assassination of Malcolm X
from CriticalReading.com, okay? The first one, Life, March 5th, 1965.
I’m going to begin reading it just so we can kind of break
it down and show you what I’m wanting you
to do with each piece. So that first sentence,
remember how on Friday we looked at the biography piece
of his that was pretty generic. It didn’t have a whole lot of
emotion charged in it. Think about how the word choice
here is different for this author and what they might
be trying to get across. You have, “Life oozing out through
a half dozen or more gunshot wounds in his chest.
Malcolm X, once the shrillest voice of black supremacy, lay dying on
the stage of a Manhattan auditorium.” In that sentence alone, what would you
have highlighted, circled, marked as kind of the words that stick out
to you that are kind of charged? Charles? – Oozing? – Oozing. What does that make
you see or feel, oozing? – Like coming out real slowly. – Coming out real slow?
Okay, I kind of think of like a wound or something that’s almost like pus oozing.
I kind of see the pus thing. It’s kind of disgusting, but I do.
With the oozing one, what would you replace it with? What kind of synonym, and let’s talk
about how that would change. – Gushing? – Gushing? Okay, so if it’s gushing,
how does that change the tone? – Coming out faster. – Coming out faster?
What would that relate? If it’s oozing, it’s a slow process.
Slowly dying? Really horrible, right? Gushing, it’s still horrible,
but it’s happening faster, okay? The word choice there might
be just, visually, he saw it oozing and chose that word
and so slowly coming out just, it was more effective to
say it in one word. Right? Oozing and it sounds kind of disgusting
and bloody and all that, which they’re probably going for. Joshua. – I’ll use squirting. – Squirt? You like squirt.
That would be like… I think about if it struck
an artery or something, that you’d have the nasty squirting.
You like gore, don’t you? Yeah, Joshua, the squirting. Okay, Antonio? – Bleeding. – Bleeding, right? That’s a good one.
His life bleeding out through a half dozen. How would that change?
Bleeding and oozing? – Oozing is more dramatic. – More dramatic. I like that.
More dramatic. Let’s see if you view that’s
what the author is going for in their tone towards the end. In that same sentence,
anything else struck your mind? Someone besides Charles,
Joshua, Antonio, Berbello? – Shrillest? – Shrillest, what does shrillest mean?
– I don’t know. – Not sure, but it just stuck with you?
Outspoken? High-pitched, right? If it’s something is shrill,
I think of a harpies, that it is not a pleasant sound.
It’s very loud, right? If the alarms come on,
it’s a shrill tone and it’s something you don’t
want to be around, right? Right there we already
have his life oozing out through a half dozen or more
gunshot wounds in his chest. “Malcolm X, once the shrillest voice
of black supremacy, lay dying on the stage
of a Manhattan auditorium.” For me, I already see that possibly, this author doesn’t
like Malcolm so much. That shrill voice, he doesn’t
really want to hear that voice. But with shrill, how could…
If we substitute a synonym, what could we substitute there and
how would it change the tone? Rhodah? – The strongest? – Strongest, ooh,
I like that. Once the strongest
voice of black supremacy. Would that fit right now, would
during that point in time, was Malcolm one of the strongest
voices of black supremacy? – Yes – He was. He was one of the
strongest, so that would fit and that would
totally change the tone. That is a beautiful example.
If you said strongest, what would the tone come across you,
is it a positive or a negative? – Positive. – It is more positive.
Kind of I’m embracing what he’s saying. He’s strong and powerful, okay?
Great. Is this making sense? – Yes. – What do you want to say? – I wouldn’t like to add but,
was he supremacist or civil rights? I don’t remember. – Early on, when we did
the background and we… It talked about that he was
very much into black supremacy. He wanted no segregation at all.
Whites must be separated from blacks. Whites are our problem.
He referred to whitey all the time. Whitey is your main issue, okay? Then when he turned around completely,
when he went to Mecca and had this life-changing
experience that all Muslims do not have to be of a certain color,
right, or ethnicity. That it can be of any country,
creed, right? That he came around full circle.
All right? Then he was more not preaching
or speaking out hostilely towards whites anymore, right? But still saying if you
mess with me and mine, we will come to your house, right?
Basically, right? Anything else? Are we good? Mr. Charles, you’re on deck
to finish this off for us. – “Malcolm X, one of the shrillest voices
of black supremacy, lay dying on the stage of a Manhattan
auditorium. Moments before, he had stepped up to the
lectern and 400 of the faithful had settled down expectantly
to hear the sort of speech for which he was famous: flaying
the hated white man. Then a scuffle broke out in
the hall and Malcolm’s bodyguards bolted from his side to
break it up, only to discover that they had been faked out.
At least two men with pistols rose from the audience
and pumped bullets into the speaker, while the third cut lose at
close range with both barrels of a sawed-off shotgun.
In the confusion, the pistol man got away. The shotgunner lunged through
the crowd and out the door, but not before the guards came
to their wits and shot him in the leg. Outside he was swiftly overtaken
by other supporters of Malcolm and very likely would have
been stomped to death if the police hadn’t saved him.
Most shocking of all to the residents of Harlem was the fact that Malcolm
had been killed not by ‘whitey,’ but by members of his own race.” – Great. Thank you.
What did you mark up there? Go back through and kind of
tell us some of those words. Joshua? – I put whitey. – Why whitey? – Because they put it like it
couldn’t just be a white man. It had to be derogative. – It had to be whitey and remember
he always spoke about whitey being the one that you’re
against. You have, “about 400 of the faithful
had settled down expectantly to hear the sort of speech which he was famous for:
flaying the hated white man.” So that’s already very charged.
What they, what the speaker, this author is saying they’re there
to hear but that’s not the case. He has already completely
come around. Most likely he was not
intending to speak upon. It’s been about a year, I believe,
that he wasn’t going to speak about this. You have the author
still with the perception he’s going to be against whites
with this speech. For me, it’s already being charged there even.
It might be just my age or something, I’m not sure, but that’s
where I definitely hone in on and the whitey part. Right?
What’s a synonym we could put in there? – Caucasian? – Caucasian, that
totally changes it, okay? Malcolm had been killed not by a Caucasian,
but members of his own race. What does that due to tone? [Multiple students responding] – It’s casual. It’s pretty relaxed. It’s more formal.
Whitey’s pretty charged. If they go, “Hey whitey, move.”
I’ll be like, “Oh, wow. Okay.” Then you said cracker,
right? I’ll be like, “Well, do you want cheese with that?
I’m not sure. I don’t know.” Right? But cracker is derogatory, too. That’s a term you would not want used against
you as a white person, right? Very different, okay? How about anything else?
What other terms do we have? It’s okay. – I crossed over faked out
where he said… – Faked out. What is that?
– “Only to discover they had been faked out.” – Good. Faked out. How does that… What can we put
in there in place of faked out? – Tricked? – Tricked? That’s kind of similar.
-Bamboozled. – Bamboozled, nice vocabulary. I think of someone
running away with the money. – Pranked.
– Pranked? Okay. – “The shotgunner lunged through the crowd.” – Okay, let’s focus on
faked out and then we’re going to come back to lunged, okay?
The faked out part, but what is kind of the tone of that? – Like, “ha-ha-ha, yeah.” – Ha-ha-ha, it does kind of have that…
with these other things, do you see how it builds once you start
marking and things kind of build? That is like, wow,
I’m not so sure how they feel about Malcolm
and his followers right now. We’ve got to figure that part out. Lunged. Can you read
that piece again? I’m sorry. The phrase. – The shotgunner lunged through
the crowd and out the door.” – Okay, “…but not before the
guards came to their wits and shot him in the leg,” right?
So he lunged through. What could we have put instead of lunged?
Lunged shows what? [Multiple students responding] – Okay, so lunged shows
that he has weight, okay? A sense of urgency
if you’re lunging away. Oh, way? Oh, I see what you’re saying. Okay, so lunged like you
had a way for that brief minute, a few seconds to get out.
Nice, I like that. What could we put
in the place lunged? – Scrambled? – Scrambled?
Okay, that seems kind of more… That kind of changes the tone.
It seems kind of more willy-nilly, that all of them are scrambling,
but also the urgency, too, that whatever it takes,
I’m trying to get out of here, right? Antonio. – He ran through the crowd. – Ran through the crowd, right? It could be that you couldn’t
really get through, so lunged has, it has a different visual.
Lunged and ran through, lunged is that you have a brief spot
to actually get through, that you’re having force
weight behind you. Run, it seems like you
have a more open path, like you could get further away. Possibly, I don’t know.
All right. How about the overall
tone of the piece? Or did you have another word we wanted
to talk about first? Anastasia? – Bolted? “Malcolm’s bodyguards
bolted from his side.” – Okay. The bodyguards bolted
from his side. What does that show us?
What is being said there? [Multiple students responding] Okay, they rushed,
they quickly left. It’s just like they were gone, right?
It was no hesitation. Our man is going down. Uh-uh. I’m going,
I’m bolting in without thought, right? What is another synonym
we could put in there that changes it? – Left? – Left? Okay. – Rushed. – Rushed and bolted… Is
bolted, rushed, or left more powerful, showing
urgency and emotion? – Bolted. – Bolted kind of wins there. So they
had the choice of many words there. What do you want to say, Chris? – Maybe charged is the other word for bolted.
– Charged? Bolted? Charged? What do you think about charged?
What does that do to tone? – Charged would mean like,
they were attacking them. – Actually, I kind of like the
charged because it kind of gives that sense of,
I’m giving back. Not only am I bolting
from his, their side, right, but I’m giving back and it’s like,
I’m bringing it to you now. I think that’s kind of an
interesting choice, right, that, that would’ve changed
the tone quite a bit. All right, are we ready to talk
about the whole piece? The whole piece, what would
you say is the overall tone, with all of these snippets
kind of coming together, is this a positive or
negative view of Malcolm? Could you see that person
having lunch with Malcolm? – No. – Okay. What is the tone?
It’s ok. Blunt, careless, you feel? Okay. He has just been
murdered, right? These are some harsh words
for a guy that’s just died and you watched him die.
Wow, that is pretty harsh. – It’s like they was
on the murderer side and they had a grim satisfaction with the
fact that they got to Malcolm. Do you feel me?
It was like his life oozing, that’s like kind of horror,
like Saw movie-type stuff. – Saw movie, I would agree. – That show that they felt like,
that’s what he get kind of like, the little na-nana,
boo boo type stuff. – Yeah, na-nana boo boo. Do you get that feeling too?
That it’s kind of like that’s what you get. You were preaching and
pushing whitey was your enemy. Guess what,
black on black violence. The nation of Islam didn’t
like you leaving them. You’re ready to bring everybody
together now; you’re going to get yours. Guess what, that’s not who you
should’ve been worried about. It was the “brothers” nearest to
you unfortunately, right? How sad that is because now currently,
same issue, right? Very similar issues going on,
which is really sad. Forty-five years later,
we still have all of this black-on-black
violence, right? Okay. Anything else you want to
say about that first article before we go let you
loose on the next four? Okay. They’re all very different, so for you…
For me, I see a white author. I see a white guy hanging out there going,
“Mm-hmm, yeah. Mm-hmm, right,” but I’m not so sure. I’d really like to look it up
and see who did write that piece. Do you understand what
you’re going to do with the next one… Ooh, I’m sorry, Chris. – I put up top, it says the guy who
wrote it was from Life magazine, or Life newspaper, and he probably
was doing different point of view over what, from what everybody
else was saying so everybody else was on Malcolm’s side, so he’s
probably want to go to the other side to see what that was like. – It could be. It could be
that they were told to give us a different take on it. The next four, you’re doing the
same thing in your groups. You can go in order,
you can do the second one. It’s from the New York Post
and then Associated Press, Amsterdam News. Or as a group,
you can kind of jump around. You can read it individually at
your table and then discuss what you’ve highlighted and marked
or you can do it all together, all right? It’s your choice in your
groups, whatever works best. You guys talk about it
and negotiate it, all right? Can you just go in
order once real quick? [Students talking to each other] – He’s right. – He’s taking the hard way. We have to start the hard way. – He just wants to…. [Students talking with each other] Right, so that’s their way that
they introduce each other. [Students talking with each other]