ENG 100: Franco-American Snowshoeing Unit 2

Unit 2 Introduction

Writing About Writing asks you to develop and write a critical response to one or more published texts and tailor the response to an academic audience.

Primary and Secondary

Secondary information (Ex. a published text) is distinct from primary information in that secondary information is a report, summary and/or analysis of primary Information. Primary information is the original document, for example: a speech, diary, or experiment. Secondary information describes or comments on that original document.

Today we will scan a primary document here: https://digitalcommons.usm.maine.edu/fac-lpg-speeches-1949/6/. This speech is a typed version of a speech given in Maine by Louis Philippe Gagné in 1949.

Now scan a secondary source, a newspaper article written by the Sun Journal in 2013 here: https://search-proquest-com.wv-o-ursus-proxy01.ursus.maine.edu/docview/1269550318/65AEBFAC12CD44DAPQ/4?accountid=8120

Think about how the two documents are alike, and how are they different?

Analyzing Academic Articles

Next watch the following video demonstrating the process of analyzing an academic article.

As described in the video, my task in analyzing an article is to break the article down into paragraphs. I identify the topic sentence of each paragraph, then put it in my own words to make sure I understand what the paragraph is about. I then look for an interesting quote from the paragraph that either tells the story of the paragraph (an example of an event, for instance). Or is just so interesting in general it might be the focus of the article as a whole.

I can represent the topic sentence and quote(s) in two ways.

  1. I can write the quote verbatim (word for word) and set it apart with quotation marks. Usually use of quotes are for short passages that fit in exactly with the theme of my project.
  2. I can use the ideas of the quote, but use my own words to explain how I believe the ideas in the quote fit in with my project.

Note: both of these approaches require I give credit to the author. Depending on your instructor you might have to create an in-text citation, a footnote, and/or a Works Cited page at the end of your paper.

Secondary Source Analysis


Perform the same process with the following article. Note the new challenge in question 2. People can read articles from different perspectives. Can you find evidence of a particular theme?

Use the following article (or substitute another if you wish)

  1. When you read the article, decide on what topic you want to point out to a reader. This particular article is about the history and manufacture of snowshoes in Canada. Is there a particular part of the article you most want to talk about? List the paragraph number (since there are not page numbers) and write a brief description of that/those part(s) of the article. It’s okay to use bullet points.
  2. Consider looking at this article and the portions you chose from a secondary point-of- view. How can your selections be associated with the following considerations: race, class, labor, education, government (choose 1 or more) Explain how your selections relate to those characteristics.
  3. Where are the passages in the article that most exemplify what you are trying to say in question 2? Count the paragraphs on the page. What number paragraph is/are your selection(s).