Summary Assignment

AFRS 100B: Summary Assignment                                      Fall 2019

Summary – A condensed version of an original text.

As your first formal essay, the Summary Assignment will highlight your ability to connect to a text by identifying and summarizing claims made by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in his “I Have a Dream” speech. Although you will model the organization and structure of the speech, you will use your own terms and employ your own voice to articulate the speech’s claims and supporting evidence.

Your charge is to write a brief one-page, single-spaced summary, restating the main ideas of the speech.  A copy of the speech can be accessed in Call and Response: Key Debates in African American Studies.

The aim of this assignment is to thoroughly comprehend a text and to translate the essential meaning of the text into terms accessible to others.

In your introduction, identify the author, subject, audience, and purpose.

Strategies:

  • Identify the main claims in the text and restate them near the start of your summary.
  • Paraphrase the supporting points, examples, and details; use a thesaurus to find synonyms for key words.
  • Condense the original text, keeping your writing within one single-spaced page.
  • Be “objective” rather than “critical” – try to narrow down the original, without adding editorial comments.
  • Use verbs that capture the author’s argument and analysis.

This essay should be formatted in MLA style, i.e., typed, *single-spaced, 1 page in length, with one-inch margins.  

The first draft of this assignment is due Wednesday, 09/04/19 at the beginning of class. Please bring a typed copy of your draft to class and post a copy to the Dropbox on Beachboard prior to the start of class. This draft should be approximately ¾ page in length.

The final draft of this assignment is due Monday, 09/09/19 at the beginning of class. Please bring a typed copy of your draft to class and post a copy to the Dropbox on Beachboard prior to the start of class. This draft should be 1 full page in length.