The Thursday Complex

Standard: RI.9-10.5. Analyze in detail how an author’s ideas or claims are developed and refined by particular sentences, paragraphs, or larger portions of a text (e.g., a section or chapter).

Learning Target: Students will read an article about the Oedipal complex and complete a margin-marking activity, then begin brainstorming for their persuasive essay.

Activator: The Who – Baba O’Riley

Today we’re going to do that margin-marking thing again :D Remember this from a week or so ago? It was when we made little symbols in the margins of an article to think our way through it, and then we talked about it. Here’s the breakdown:

  • Put a * next to anything you think would be worth discussing with the class. (3)
  • Put a ? next to anything that confuses you or that you have questions about. (2)
  • Put a ! next to any statement with which you strongly agree. (1)
  • Put a X next to any statement with which you strongly disagree.(1)

Right! So today’s article is about this thing called the oedipal complex, which basically says that all people have an inherent jealousy of their same-gender parent and an inherent desire to be with someone like their opposite-gender parent. This is where the idea that all women marry men exactly like their fathers come from… have you guys heard of that before? Anyway, as with most things in psychology, there is some debate as to whether or not this phenomenon is legit. So today we’re going to read an article that doesn’t look so much at people who might experience the oedipal complex, but that looks at the play and examines whether the oedipal complex exists at all. Sound fun? Cool!

After that, we’re going to talk about our persuasive essay for this unit. Here’s the gist of it:

Argumentative: What does it mean to suffer? Is suffering truly universal? In the book Anna Karenina, Leo Tolstoy says “Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.” In contrast, however, Martin Luther King Jr. said that everyone suffers: “Every step toward the goal of justice requires sacrifice, suffering, and struggle; the tireless exertions and passionate concern of dedicated individuals.” What do you think? Does the current generation suffer more or from worse things than past generations have – in other words, is life for you worse than it was for your parents? Teenagers often think that their life is harder than anyone else’s life has ever been, and likewise, adults often think that their own youth was a much simpler, easier time. What is your opinion? Does life continue to get worse and worse, or does everyone suffer to the same degree?

Due date: Tuesday, May 14th, 2012. Absolutely NO ESSAYS WILL BE ACCEPTED EVEN FOR LATE CREDIT after Friday, May 17th.

Write an essay in which you respond to the above questions. Your essay should meet the following criteria:

  • At least 750 words.
  • MLA Formatting
  • Formal Style – no 1st person, contractions, slang, etc.
  • You should answer all of the questions posed to you on the other side of this sheet in a full and complete manner. Remember to respond to the prompt, not just write how awful your life is.
  • Proper grammar and conventions, and stylistically engaging.
  • Your essay must be submitted on or before the due date. Late essays will not be accepted, as I will not have time to grade them before the semester is over.

We’ll go over the essay requirements and then I’ll give you guys some time to brainstorm and start getting your ideas down on paper, which we’ll probably do with a circle map. Tomorrow we’ll do another article that should help you in your stormbraining, and then next week is all about wrapping up loose ends!

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