In-Class Assignment for Conference Sessions

  1. Swap essays with a partner.
  2. Read your partner’s essay all the way through, then write down what you take to be your partner’s central argument in one clear, declarative sentence at the top of the first page. It should be a main argument that answers the question, “How does ‘Darwinism not Neodarwinism’ operate rhetorically?”
  3. Once you have established what seems to be the main argument, read through your partner’s essay for a second time. During this time, mark your partner’s essay in the following way:


  • Draw a boxaround the sentences that explain and develop your partner’s main argument.
  • Underline quotations that seem particularly relevant to your partner’s main argument.
  • Draw a squiggly line under or around the text that does not directly explain or develop your partner’s main argument.
  1. Once you have marked up your partner’s text, write notes on the following:
  2. Does your partner “say” all they need to say to explain and develop their argument? Is there a way to take their claim further or explain more for the reader’s understanding?
  3. Does your partner quote at length when much of the quotation could be paraphrased? Are quotations analyzed extensively enough to justify their placement in the essay?
  4. Lastly, what about the text in the squiggly lines, the text that does not directly explain or develop your partner’s main argument? What is it doing there? How does it connect to the main argument? If it does not, invite your partner to cut it out. If it does connect, see if its connection to the main argument could be more clearly developed and communicated.
  5. Take a picture of your partner’s marked pages and your notes and upload them to

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