For your presentation, I’d like you to prepare to deliver a 10 minute version of your paper.  You can do this in whatever way will be best practice for your future goals.  (You could prepare a 10 minute shortened version and read it to us; you could put together slides and talk extemporaneously from those; you can do interpretive dance, etc.)  On the basis of your presentation, your audience will also have some time to ask you questions.  You’ll need to know your material.  (Criteria listed below.)

To that same end, I’d also ask you to be prepared to ask at least 3 substantive questions of the presenters for each class period.  This is no easy task: you have to pay attention, follow the argument, consider the ways that the critic is analyzing his/her evidence.  A few strategies for formulating questions:

  • What more might the critic say about his her terms?
  • Are there additional terms, contexts, histories, critical conversations that you think he/she might include?
  • Are there un-accounted for ideas in the passages/scenes that you want him/her to talk about, weave into his/her argument?
  • Do you know of another critic or theorist who might have an idea that this critic should consider?
  • Is there another text that their argument might also apply to, or enhance?  Suggest one, and help the critic see the connection; invite him/her to test out the argument.
  • What is most interesting about their argument, and what do you want to hear more about?
  • Are there any seemingly internal contradictions in the argument?

Criteria for presentation

  • Statement of Argument (what is important, what are your terms, what should we focus on?)
  • Critical Conversation/Theory
  • (What have others said about your topic?  Who are the major voices? What are you adding to this discussion?)
  • One or two examples, and analysis of these
  • Organization, logic, presentation
  • Questions, posed and answered

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