Personal Statement as a critical reader

write a personal statement about your priorities, goals, and interests as a reader of literary history. What is the most important thing you’ve learned this semester, and how would you like to build on that insight, practice, or method in your future as a critical reader of literature? Use at least one close reading of a primary text to demonstrate what you mean, and cite any secondary sources that help you make your point. Put your analysis in the context of the archive you’ve mapped in your timeline.

• Length: 5-7 pages

• Format: MLA

How to do it: Identify the most exciting idea you’ve had in class this semester, and use this essay to make a statement about the ways and reasons why it’s so exciting to you. Think about the ways you might build on this literary experience to cultivate your practice as a reader. You might think of this in the short-term as a statement about your goals as an English major at QC. Alternatively, you might think of it in the longer term as a statement about the ways you want to deepen your literary experience over the course of your life, along with whatever else you choose to do.

How to get full credit: I want to give you all full credit for this, too. To get it, you can think of this assignment in the genre of the personal statement, which is commonly required for applicants to graduate programs. The best works in this genre provide a snapshot of their writer’s intellectual autobiographies and make a persuasive case for the energy they’ll bring to to the work they have yet to do.

The purpose: I want to help you build from this class to become the most avid readers of literature that you can possibly be. This assignment asks you to define what that would mean for you and make plans to pursue that goal, this summer, next fall, and beyond. At the same time, this assignment asks you to pull the strands of our conversation this semester together and write a conclusion. What have you learned, and what do you want to learn as you keep reading?

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