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Tips on Assignment and Study guide for lecture 4

Course Code
Sarianna Metso
Study Guide

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RLG202: Introduction to Judaism
Lec 4
Analytical responses to Primary Texts
-Dr. Tyler Evans-Tokaryle
Room 390, UTM Library 905 828 3858
What they are looking for from us:
understand key critical terms
ability to use the terms properly
you are participating in a scholarly conversation
when a phrase is repeated more than once you are ought to do this
oβ€œJewish self-understanding, though world and traditions”
Your writing should focus on β€œwhat” and more on β€œhow”
How the issues are represented in the litteratur under study
How ezperts in their field differ in ther interpretations
How for examples. A critical reading of Exodus 3-6 by scholar a differs
from our reading which is informed by scholar B
Why β€œanalysis of a primary source?”
Will develop your avility to:
ounderstand main points of primary source
oengage in β€œclose reading”
oselect criteria for evaluating text
ξ€β€œwhat are you looking for”
a valued criteria
is it explicable
why this word and not this word
oread critiacally to determine text’s explicit or implied arguemtn
odevelop thesis and argument
owrite in clear and focused manner
osituate test (put it in historical and cultural context)
The Assignment
oNot the same as study or interpret
oTake something apart and show how it goes back together
Develop an argument
oThesis statement: Mini thesis that provides a premise
oThesis driven analysis of a document

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You don’t need to answer every questions in the instruction page
Step 1: Read ciritically
do a β€œclose, critical reading” of primary source
oread and re-read text (reading aloud helps)
read β€œactively” using evaluative criteria
annotate paraphrase
***ask questions***
note culturally and historically specific references
omark misunderstandings
note interesting diction, turns of phrase, allusions, tropes
look at individual words and the structure of the passage
oCambridge histories online
oEncyclopedia of religion
oEncyclopedia Judaica
oEncyclopedia of Islam
Questions to Ask When Reading and Writing β€œCritically:
is the thesis of that work clear? Why or why not?
Is the author’s argument valid? Why or Why not?
Does the author have a bias? Is it problematic or explicable?
Why or why not?
What kind of evidence does the author use to back up his or her
Step 2: Formulate an argument
Be evaluative
Examine writer’s assumptions
Put document intro conversation with other texts (from course syllabus
and immediate field of study)
oFind article sin databases such as ATLA, proquest religion,
index Islamicus, Old Testament Abstracts, New Testament
oCompare and Contrast
oTake a position about what document reveals about the β€œJewish
self-understanding, thought world and traditionsod the period in
which it was ritten and traditions of the period in which it was
written and its relevance in subsequent Jewish thought”
Two things you can base your arguments
Step 3: Draft your analysis
your 2-3 pages should include
introduction with thesis (your argument what your text reveals about
jewish self-understanding/thought world/ traditions)
a brief summary of the passage that puts it into its immediate contect
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