For the second response paper we are focusing on providing a summary of ONE article, and then an analysis/response of the article on its own or in conversation with other articles.
QUALITIES OF A SUMMARY
A good summary should be comprehensive, concise, coherent, and independent. These qualities are explained below:
A summary must be comprehensive: You should isolate all the important points in the original passage and note them down in a list. Review all the ideas on your list, and include in your summary all the ones that are indispensable to the author’s development of her/his thesis or main idea.
A summary must be concise: Eliminate repetitions in your list, even if the author restates the same points. Your summary should be considerably shorter than the source. You are hoping to create an overview; therefore, you need not include every repetition of a point or every supporting detail.
A summary must be coherent: It should make sense as a piece of writing in its own right; it should not merely be taken directly from your list of notes or sound like a disjointed collection of points.
A summary must be independent: You are not being asked to imitate the author of the text you are writing about. On the contrary, you are expected to maintain your own voice throughout the summary. Don’t simply quote the author; instead use your own words to express your understanding of what you have read. After all, your summary is based on your interpretation of the writer’s points or ideas. However, you should be careful not to create any misrepresentation or distortion by introducing comments or criticisms of your own.
Summarizing Shorter Texts (ten pages or fewer)
Write a one-sentence summary of each paragraph.
Formulate a single sentence that summarizes the whole text.
Write a paragraph (or more): begin with the overall summary sentence and follow it with the paragraph summary sentences.
Rearrange and rewrite the paragraph to make it clear and concise, to eliminate repetition and relatively minor points, and to provide transitions. The final version should be a complete, unified, and coherent.
Summarizing Longer Texts (more than ten pages)
Outline the text. Break it down into its major sections—groups of paragraphs focused on a common topic—and list the main supporting points for each section.
Write a one or two sentence summary of each section.
Formulate a single sentence to summarize the whole text, looking at the author’s thesis or topic sentences as a guide.
Write a paragraph (or more): begin with the overall summary sentence and follow it with the section summary sentences.
Rewrite and rearrange your paragraph(s) as needed to make your writing clear and concise, to eliminate relatively minor or repetitious points, and to provide transitions. Make sure your summary includes all the major supporting points of each idea. The final version should be a complete, unified, and coherent.