Integrating Distant Components of the Text Questions

by Lincoln Smith

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    00:01 Integrating distant components of the text questions examine at a deeper level the fundamental building blocks we've discussed in foundations of comprehension in the context of the main idea, the passage as a whole, and of course, the parts of the passage the question asks you to relate.

    00:19 This goes back to being able to determine an author's message, purpose, position, or point of view, being able to infer the least assumptions and biases, and using context clues to hone mental imagery and things that an author shows rather than tells to evince their viewpoints, attitudes, and inclinations, discussed now in the context of how questions relate these across a passage as a whole to one another.

    00:48 An author's message, purpose, position, or point of view is rarely summed up, we've stated in a single sentence.

    00:56 Even a solid, concluding paragraph with commentary on the original paragraph requires by its very nature, two paragraphs to understand.

    01:06 This is why we recommend even when short on time, being the introductory and concluding paragraphs and the first and last sentences of each paragraph before jumping to the questions.

    01:18 Indeed, a quality argument is painstakingly built from many constituent components.

    01:24 When asked to evaluate what the author thinks about something, treat this as an integrating distant components of the text question by default.

    01:34 Holding the broader context of the passage in mind can only play to your benefit.

    01:41 Questions at this level will also ask you about an author's beliefs, assumptions, and biases in order to assess their message, purpose, position, or point of view.

    01:52 This goes back to the idea that CARS authors are people and that can help us to better understand passages.

    02:01 Simply put, knowing something about who expresses a point of view can help you to know why they expressed it.

    02:10 The attitudes of the authors themselves are so important that they need to be scouted out across the text as a whole and not cherry-picked from a single quote.

    02:19 A position or a point of view is carefully communicated in an intentional fashion.

    02:26 But attitude includes unintentional bias and requires you to be that CARS archeologist digging beneath the veneer of what is explicitly presented.

    02:37 You also need to dig wide in addition to deep so as not to destroy the treasure you are uncovering by inserting your own opinions to the passage, but simply observing what you unearthed.

    02:53 Yet another layer deeper in the dig is to identify the basis for these beliefs, biases, and attitudes.

    03:01 The official contact guide states to pay special attention to the mental imagery, choice of cited sources, and tone to infer those beliefs, biases, and attitudes.

    03:12 Comparing an old woman to an elephant in the room as opposed to comparing her to a wart on the nose might both communicate that she is individual impossible to ignore.

    03:24 But the connotative difference between these two mental images is palpable.

    03:29 Indeed, the feeling you get from a mental image forms the basis for an author's tone.

    About the Lecture

    The lecture Integrating Distant Components of the Text Questions by Lincoln Smith is from the course CARS Theoretical Foundations.

    Author of lecture Integrating Distant Components of the Text Questions

     Lincoln Smith

    Lincoln Smith

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