Reverse Outline (25%) – 500 words Due Oct. 7
For this assignment you will be asked to outline one of our required readings, creating a map of both the arguments and structure of the essay. Knowing how to outline the work of others provides you with an essential skill that is useful when working on a large research project. This kind of work develops essential skills in critical reading and comprehension and in assessing the meaning and both strengths and weaknesses of the arguments being presented. Instructions and a grading rubric will be provided, via OWL, in the weeks leading up to the assignment due date.
1) Pick one of these required readings from our course (attachments at end of page):
Choudry, Aziz (2021) “Lessons Learnt, Lessons Lost” Activists and the Surveillance State: Learning from Repression, Toronto: Pluto Books, 3-23.
Earl, Jennifer. 2011. “Political Repression: Iron Fists, Velvet Gloves, and Diffuse Control.” Annual Review of Sociology. 37: 261-284.
Cammaerts, Bart (2020) “A Genealogy of Communicative Affordances and Activist Self-Mediation Practices,” Citizen Media and Practice: Currents, Connections, Challenges, H. Stephansen and E. Treré, New York: Routledge.
Fenton, Natalie (2016) “Digital Activism: A New Means of and a New Meaning of Being Political,” Digital, Political, Radical, London: Polity, 24-51.
2) You are being asked to produce a reverse outline of whichever one of the above readings you choose. This will involve producing a document that details what the main argument is for the reading you have selected as well as the sub-arguments.
3) A good strategy is to read with pen and paper in hand and write down the main argument for each paragraph. You will likely need to reflect on this as you read and when you are finished. As you know academic writing can be dense and so it is always expected that you will need to read sections multiple times to fully process what is being said.
4) Once you have a clear “map” of your reading, you should then create a reverse outline that can be submitted. For this outline be sure to include what you have identified as the overall argument(s), the sub-arguments and your own reflections about the strengths and limitations of these arguments.
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