Posted: September 18th, 2017
This assessment exercise requires you to write a short precis (a summary in your own words).
Express points in your own words as much as possible (with expressions creatively different from the original, but still capturing their sense and power) – this increases the value of the work.
The point of this exercise is to learn to reproduce a concise but accurate account of the principal argument of a theoretical text. Do not make the mistake of thinking that because it’s only 500-750 words, it will be easy. Identifying what you think are the main points of someone’s argument or discussion and reproducing these in precise language can be quite challenging, so give yourself enough time to think about the exercise, and to do some redrafting.
The summaries relate only to the listed articles – there is no need to consult further readings or lecture notes, and no need to compare different articles. Consider the assignment as a kind of comprehension test. The point is to reproduce the significant points made by the author (but in your own words) rather than to explore your own thoughts (leave this for your research essay). That is, you should not veer off into your own opinions (e.g. what you believe about crime and masculinity, the prohibition of drugs), as this assignment is designed to assess only your understanding of what you read.
Keep quotations to no more than 10% of your text. All quotations must be in quotation marks.
All other sentences – and even phrases within the sentences – must be in your own words (that is, do not cut and paste an author’s text in making your own sentences) DO NOT USE ANY
SENTENCES OR PHRASES OF THE ORIGINAL TEXT UNLESS THEY ARE CITED IN QUOTATION MARKS.
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