Directions

Please read the complete directions below before you write and post your discussion comments.

This blog comment exchange will increase your understanding of persuasive rhetoric, poetic/artistic expression regarding pertinent world issues, and the various ways readers in differing contexts come to understand and appreciate poems.

Questions? Contact Dr. Erin R. McCoy 

Project Overview

We are reading Sara Novic’s novel Girl at War this semester, and commenting on how we interpret, understand, and experience the work between two English classes at the University of South Carolina Beaufort (Bluffton, SC). You’ll be corresponding with small groups of students and will be able to read each other’s comments and respond to them.

When asked to identify yourself for posting your letters as comments on the blog, select “Other” and provide either your full name or your last name with first initial plus your class (for example, “Jones, D., World Lit” or “Nguyen L., ENG 101”).  You do not need to provide a webpage or any additional information. You do not have to log in to WordPress to post here, but you must “sign” your posts by providing your name and section number at the bottom of your posts to receive credit for your comments.

Please address your messages to each other as informal “letters” with an appropriate greeting and closing–-whatever feels comfortable to you. Specific directions and deadlines for writing each comment appear below and are posted as a guide for the blog. Compose your comments in your word processor and save them (spell check them) before you copy and paste them to the blog.

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COMMENT/LETTER 1
Letter 1, approximately 150 words, addressed to everybody in your group (“Dear Folks,” “Hello Group,” etc.) and submitted by Tuesday, September 29th at 9:00 p.m. (U.S. EST). To preserve the conversational structure of the discussion, please provide a greeting and signature with each message, naming the group or person to whom you are writing and signing each letter.

• In this first letter, respond with personal and critical insight, focusing on the general meaning of a small section of the text from the novel. Write about what interests you in such a way that it opens up the play to further response and discussion by your groupmates. It is okay—-even helpful-—to ask questions to solicit the opinions of others.

• Some possibilities: You might begin by discussing what’s foreign – and what’s not foreign – about growing up in 1990s Croatia. You might examine more closely how a character speaks. For each selection of the text you select, write a few sentences of your own referring back to the text in order to explain why you think they are important.

Include within your comment one or two sentences to introduce yourself to the group: for example, your name, your academic interest or emphasis. You can say something about your previous experience with literary analysis as well, if you like.

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COMMENT/LETTER 2
Approximately 150 words, addressed to everybody in the group and submitted by Tuesday, October 1st, 9:00 p.m. (U.S. EST). To preserve the conversational structure of the discussion, please provide a greeting and signature with each message, naming the group or person to whom you are writing and signing each letter.

• Before you compose your second comment, read all the submissions prior to yours and any second comments already posted by members of your group. In your second comment, addressed to your entire group, refer specifically to at least two members of the group by name, attempting to cite at least two groupmates whose first submissions have not already been cited by others if possible. Please respond to at least one person not in your class.

• In your second comment, identify and explain how one or more reflective comments by groupmates contributed to your understanding of the book. Comment on ways in which their interpretations are similar to and/or different from your own. This response can also be personal, connecting your own understanding and experience with what you learned from reading the book and from your group. Don’t hesitate to quote briefly from your groupmates’ letters and from the play.

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COMMENT/LETTER 3
Approximately 100 words, addressed to everybody in the group and submitted by Thursday, October 3rd, 9:00 p.m. (U.S. EST). To preserve the conversational structure of the discussion, please provide a greeting and signature with each message, naming the group or person to whom you are writing and signing each letter.

• First, read the second comments and any additional comments already posted by members of your group. Compose a personal response about some of the ideas and opinions presented there, citing by name at least two groupmates whose second submissions have not already been cited by others if possible. Please respond to at least one person not in your same class.

• Second, either create or find another representation of Girl at War For example, you may create an illustration or find a musical selection or other medium that expresses something you believe to be akin to the characters, plot, tone, or structure of the play. (Please do not refer to the posts of other groups on this blog.) You will need to locate or post this additional representation online so your partners can access it on the Web. (If you find a photo, for example, post a link to the photo).

• Third, explain fully the relationship between the representation you have selected or composed and your understanding of Girl at War.

What People Say

The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing.

Walt Disney

It is our choices, Harry, that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.

J. K. Rowling

Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.

Dr. Seuss

Let’s build something together.


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