saw in the instructions for the related annotation assignment) and write a 150-300 word answer that

saw in the instructions for the related annotation assignment) and write a 150-300 word answer that
draws on and analyzes specific portions of the text. Your answer may draw on analysis you performed in
your annotations (and/or on other students’ analysis), but shouldn’t repeat verbatim what you said
there; instead, you should synthesize observations about individual passages into a larger analytical
argument that addresses the question(s) in the prompt. Keep in mind that you don’t need to answer all
of the subquestions in the prompt; instead, use them to spark your thinking, and help you come up with
a unified answer to the question.
To begin writing, click “create thread”and give your thread a title that reflects the question/theme on
which you’ll be writing (you can just use the bolded language that introduces the questions below).
Your post should begin with a sentence that states that unified answer(basically, a topic sentence or
mini-thesis), then go on to present evidence and analysis that supports your answer. Since writing is a
process of discovery, you may well find that you want to revise your opening sentence after you’ve
written the rest of the post, or even to wait to write it until the end of the writing process.
You don’t need to give credit if you build on ideas in your own annotations. If you build on your
classmates’ annotations, give brief credit through a signal phrase (“as Amanda Garcia pointed out in an
annotation. . .”). You don’t need to list annotations in a source list. If you make reference to a source
from outside the course Bb site (which you should do sparingly; the main focus here should be on
analyzing the text itself), you should follow the same system of citation illustrated in the sample
citations, with both an in-text citation (signal phrase and/or parenthetical citation) and a brief source list
at the end.
2b: By 11:59 p.m. on Tues. 9/8, read through your classmates posts(which will become visible after you
complete your own initial post), picking every 2nd or 3rd one if you don’t have time to read them all, and
write at least 3 replies of at least 75 words each, including one that addresses the same
question/theme that you did, and one that addresses a different question/theme (the third one can be
on either the same or a different theme/question; if there aren’t any posts on your theme/question
available, then you can reply to three on different themes/questions from your own).
As in the initial Discussion Board post, your replies should be substantive, designed to advance the
conversation ratherthan stopping at expressing agreement or disagreement or repeating/paraphrasing
what your classmate has already said in slightly different words. The best ways to add substance are to
offer additional examples that confirm or raise questions about a pattern a classmate has already noted,
and/or to offer additional analysis of the evidence/examples already mentioned in the post that does
the same. You should feel free to agree or disagree with the ideas expressed in the initial post; if you do
disagree with all or part of a post, please do so courteously, by focusing on the details of the
texts/stories under analysis and/or alternative interpretations of those details.
Questions (choose one, keeping in mind that you can follow the same question/theme throughout the
semester,switch from theme to theme, or stick mostly to one theme with occasional deviations):
• Author, Audience & Purpose (rhetorical analysis):What can you tell about who the author of this
text is, what the author’s relationship to the subject(s) of the text is, what audience the author
intends this text to reach, and/or the author’s purpose in writing it? What particular parts and/or
features of the text seem designed to communicate the author’s intended message to the intended
audience? Are there any particular places where you feel the author is more or less successful in
crafting the text to suit the intended audience and purpose? (As with most texts, the beginning is
likely to offer the most obvious examples, but any portion of the text can be analyzed from this
perspective. Look especially for places where the author seems to be trying to persuade the reader
to see things from a particular point of view, and/or to answer a criticism or counterargument,
stated or unstated).
• People of European Descent:What ideas and/or assumptions about people of European descent
does the text convey, and how? What words, images, metaphors, and/or other methods are used
to describe them and/or their actions? What characteristics, habits, etc. are ascribed to them?
What does the author consider noteworthy about them, as individuals and/or as a group? Does the
author make any distinctions among them? If so, on what basis? (This question is harder to answer
than some of the others because Smith himself is of European descent and writes from the
perspective of a European. However, there are details to observe. Good places to look include the
verses to and about Smith toward the beginning and interspersed throughout and the lists of
participants in various voyages, explorations, etc. You should also feel free to narrow your focus to
depictions of a specific person.)
• Native Americans: What ideas and/or assumptions about Native Americans does the text convey,
and how? What words, images, metaphors, and/or other methods are used to describe them
and/or their actions? What characteristics, habits, etc. are ascribed to them? What does the author
consider noteworthy about them, as individuals and/or as a group? Does the author make any
distinctions among them? If so, on what basis? (You’ll find evidence to answer this question
throughout the text, including in the assigned passages. Make sure to do some exploring outside
those as well; the second book is a good place to start. Comparing the depiction of tribes native to
Virginia Indians in Books 1-3 with those of tribes native to New England in book 6 can also be
interesting. You should also feel free to narrow your focus to depictions of a specific person.)
• People of African Descent:What ideas and/or assumptions about people of African Descent does
the text convey, and how? What words, images, metaphors, and/or other methods are used to
describe them and/or their actions? What characteristics, habits, etc. are ascribed to them? What
does the author consider noteworthy about them, as individuals and/or as a group? Does the author
make any distinctions among them? If so, on what basis? (This will be an important theme in the
class, but there is less relevant material in this reading than in some others; I found and marked
three mentions of Africa and/or “Negars,” which is Smith’s word for people of African descent.
Those three passages, especially the third one, are fairly rich, so there’s plenty to support a brief
analysis, and a Discussion Board post. Another approach would be to search for the word “black,”
which he also uses to describe people of African descent, and think about its other uses/associations
in the text.)
• Gender:What ideas and/or assumptions does the text convey about gender, and how? What
words, images, metaphors, and/or other methods are used to describe people identified as men or
women and/or their actions? What characteristics, habits, etc. are ascribed to them? What does
the author consider noteworthy about them, as individuals and/or as a group? Does the author
make any distinctions among them? If so, on what basis? (This is another theme for which you can
gather evidence throughout the text. You’ll probably want to pick either men or women (I don’t
think there is anyone who is identified as falling into a different gender category; if you find such an
example, please annotate it), and keep in mind that some of the same difficulties are involved in
investigating depictions of men as in investigating depictions of people of European descent; they
tend to be treated as the default, so assumptions may require a bit more investigating/explicating.
If you’re interested in depictions of women, the dedication and the mentions of Pocahontas are two
obvious places to start. Here, too, you should feel free to narrow to depictions of a specific person;
Pocahontas is the most obvious choice.)
• Religion:What ideas about religion (either the author’s own religion, others’ religion, or both) do
you see in the text? What words, images, metaphors, and/or other methods are used to convey
religious ideas? Do you see quotations from and/or allusions to religious texts? If so, what role do
those references play in the text? What role does the author suggest religious beliefs play in
motivating the actions of one or more people in the text? (This is another topic that comes up,
explicitly or implicitly, throughout. There are a couple of passages describing the religious practices
of indigenous Virginians, which I have marked with annotations and tags; you’ll also find parallel
sections in Books 5 and 6. Discussions of Pocahontas, especially her capture, marriage, and death,
are also good places to look.)
• The Land: What ideas about the land of Virginia (including geographical and geological features,
plants, animals, and/or ecosystems) do you see in the text? What words, images, metaphors,
and/or other methods are used to describe elements of the natural world? What portions of the
natural world are of interest to the author, and why? What role does the natural world play in
human actions and decisions? How does the author believe humans should relate to the natural
world? How can you tell? (There is material for this question throughout, but you may especially
want to look at the Book 2; Book 3, chapter 11; and/or Books 5 and 6 for comparison of Virginia to
Bermuda and/or New England.)
• Images: Analyze one or more of the images in the text. What ideas about the people, objects, etc.
pictured do they convey? How do they connect/compare to (support/amplify or perhaps differ
from) the messages conveyed by the written text? (There are five illustrations in all, including the
frontispiece. I’ve marked them with a tag reading “illustration.” You can’t select portions of the
illustrations themselves, so feel free to make annotations immediately above or below.)
Grading: Like most Discussion Board posts in this class, this post will be graded on a 20-point scale, with
the most common grade being a 17 (or 85%, representing fully satisfactory or B-level work). Fully
satisfactory initial posts will earn 11 points, and fully satisfactory replies will earn 2 points each.
Especially well-supported and/or insightful initial posts will earn up to 12.5 points, and replies that meet
the same criteria will earn up to 2.5 points each. Late posts will earn half the credit they would
otherwise receive. will earn up to 8 points, and late and/or incomplete replies will earn up to 2 points
each. If you have a valid reason for completing work late (illness is the most common one) please
contact me. Note that you must complete the “a” part of the post in order to complete, and receive
credit for, the “b” part.

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