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TEXT INTERPRETATION: TYPICAL QUESTIONS

GIST

Give the gist of the story /passage

GENRE

Can you identify the genre of the passage? Find evidence in the text to justify your answer.

TITLE and THEME

What do you think the title of the story signifies? Does the title help you understand main idea/theme/message?

Is the theme of this passage easily traced? How would you define it? Is the theme explicit? Why/Why not?

PLOT

Does the plot begin at the start of the story or in medias res?

Is there an exposition? What information do we get from it about the characters/ the basic conflict?

Is the story based on conflict? Does the conflict come from outside or inside? What are the conflicting forces? Is there a resolution to the conflict?

At which point(s) does(do) the complication(s) come? Can you identify the climax of the story? Is there a denoument?

Comment of the time sequence in the passage. Are the events in the plot chronological9 Are there any flashbacks in the story? What purpose do they serve?

Is suspense created in the plot? If so, how?

Are there any subplots? What are their functions?

NARRATIVE STRATEGIES

What kind of narrator tells the story? Is it a first-person or third-person narrator?

Is the first-person narrator reliable? Justify your answer.
Is the third-person narrator omniscient?

Is the point of view objective? Does the narrator of the story pass judgement on anyone?

Can you feel the narrator's attitude to the events or characters? What means help to
reveal it?

Find examples in the text when the narrator interrupts the story and addresses the reader directly. What purposes do the intrusions serve?

Does the author try to represent the thoughts of a character? What technique does he use achieve this effect?

What effect does the author's choice of narrator have on the impact of the story?

CHARACTERIZATION

Name the characters of the passage.

Is this a round or a flat character?

Is he dynamic or static?

What methods of characterization does the author use? Are they predominantly direct or'

indirect?

Pick out the words and expressions portraying the character. What detail in the physical description provides a clue about his personality?

How does he relate to the other characters in the story? Is he similar to or different from other characters?

What information does the way the character behaves provide?

Has the setting shaped the character's personality? Does the setting, reflect his mood or emotional state?

Point out literary details revealing the characters and their relations.

What does the way the character speaks reveal about his character, social background, education?

What other language means are used with the aim of characterization?

SETTING

What is the setting of the story in time and space? Is this relevant? What associations do you make with this time/place?



Is the setting briefly sketched or is it described in detail?

Are the descriptions of setting based on visual images?

Is the language used in the descriptions poetic?

Through whose eyes is the setting seen? Does the setting reveal the characters' state of mind?

What is the role of the setting? Does it:

a) contribute towards creating mood and atmosphere?

b) influence the characters' behavior?

c) reinforce the main themes of the work? What mood do the setting details help to create?

ATMOSPHERE

Characterize the atmosphere of the passage. Does it change? What literary techniques and language means sustain it?

TONE and STYLE

Characterize the tone of the narration. Is the tone of the narration serious/light/ironic/satiric/sentimental/etc? Does the narrator sustain the same tone through the whole story or does the tone change? Trace the Increase and decrease of emotiveness and tension.

What is the effect of this tone? What language means sustain it? What connotations dominate this passage? Name stylistic devices contributing to the tone of the narration. Does the tone of the narration confirm the tension of the plot or diffuse it?

Characterize the style of the passage (objective/confessional/poetic/ironic/ vague/ concrete/ colloquial/ simple/ figurative/ conversational/etc). Is the narrator's language rich in descriptive elements (epithets, metaphors, similes) or is it sparing and direct?

What methods of presenting thoughts and utterances (direct/ indirect speech, free indirect discourse, inner monologue, stream of consciousness) are used in the passage?

Identify the dominant stylistic means the author uses to convey his point of view. Comment on the joint effect of the main-style-forming elements of the text.

How does the style of the climactic passage (syntax, vocabulary, stylistic devices) affect its impact on the reader?

What means maintain the humorous quality of the story? Is the humor primarily verbal, behavioral or situational? How do stylistic devices add to the humor?

What devices give rhythm to the (following) passage? Why is rhythm important here?

What does the author's choice of vocabulary add to the mood/atmosphere/ characterization? What do archaic/poetic/slang/etc words add to the narration?


Date: 2015-12-17; view: 1093


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