|*CHOOSE YOUR OWN POET (SEE TEACHER)||POETRY|
HOW DOES AN AUTHOR'S LIFE OR BIOGRAPHY AFFECT HIS OR HER WRITING?!
Biographical: The author's life affects his or her work
Central Biographical Questions:
What biographical facts has the author used in the text?
What biographical facts has the author changed? Why?
What insights do we acquire about the author’s life by reading the text?
How do these facts and insights increase (or diminish) our understanding of the text?
In what ways does the author seem to consider his or her own life as "typical" or significant?
Historical: Historical events help shape a work
Central Historical Questions:
What specific historical events were happening when the work was being composed? (See timelines in history or literature texts.)
What historical events does the work deal with?
In what ways did history affect the writer's outlook?
In what ways did history affect the style? language? content?
In what ways and for what reasons did the writer alter historical events?
Geographical: Settings limit and define what writers can produce
Central Geographical Questions
Which geographical features in the text are actual?
What aspects of the geography are essential to the story? And which are nonessential?
To what extent has the geography limited the kind of story that can happen?
In what ways has the writer altered the geography to suit his or her purposes? Has the writer made any geographical errors?
Political: Prevailing Political conditions often modify a literary work
Central Political Questions:
What political events are significant in the text?
What political events were occurring at the time the text was written? (See timelines in history or literature texts.)
What political events were occurring at the time the text was written?
What political beliefs does the author seem to have? And how are those beliefs shown?
What political beliefs does the author seem to dislike? How can you tell?
Philosophical and Religious: The religious and ethical climate influences writers and their texts.
Central Philosophical/Religious Questions:
What religious or ethical beliefs does the text deal with directly? Are any religions or philosophies mentioned specifically in the text?
What religious or ethical beliefs or philosophies does the author seem to favor? How can you tell?
What religious or ethical beliefs or philosophies does the author seem to disfavor? How can you tell?
What behaviors do the characters display that the author wants us to think are “right”? How can you tell?
What behavior is “wrong”? How can you tell?
Sociological/Anthropological: Social conditions and notions of the origins and cultures of humanity affect literature.
Central Sociological/Anthropological Questions:
What sort of society does the author describe? (How is it set up? What rules are there? What happens to people who break them? Who enforces the rules?)
What does the writer seem to like or dislike about this society?
What changes do you think the writer would like to make in the society? And how can you tell?
What sorts of pressures does the society put on its members? How do the members respond to this pressure?
Prevailing theories of human behavior find their way into literature.
Central Psychological Questions:
Are there any specific psychologists or psychological theories mentioned in the text? In what ways?
What theories of human behavior does the writer seem to believe? How can you tell?
What theories of human behavior does the writer seem to reject? How can you tell?
How do people’s minds work in the text? How do people think? How are their thoughts shown?
In what ways do the structure and organization of the text indicate the writer’s beliefs about the workings of the mind?