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Practical Criticism

As an introduction to literary criticism, class members recreate I.A. Richards' close reading experiment. Individuals select a poem, paraphrase the story, focus on the imagery used, consider what the imagery adds to the tale, and identify the feeling the poem creates in the reader. Although the exercises are based on poems selected from the Victorian Women Writers Project, the close reading approach could be used with any self-selected poems.

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CCSS: Designed
Pros

  • Individuals are permitted to select the poems to be examined
  • The approach takes the mystery out of literary analysis and criticism
  • The activities are structured in such a way that all readers can be successful
  • Extensions are included in the packet
Cons

  • None
Included Materials

  • Activity
  • Lesson Plan
  • Worksheet