Lesson 1 (from The Branch)
In the Prologue of the novel, Louise Erdrich sets up a simple scene: two children step off a train. However, this simple scene conveys deep meaning due to Erdrich's careful writing style. One of the writing devices she uses is description, both of setting and of character. The objective of this lesson is to explore her descriptive writing style.
1. Chapter sketch. Make a list of the various objects and characters that the author describes in this chapter. Next to each element in your list, write at least two things that you have learned about that element due to the author's writing style.
2. Description analysis. Now choose one element from your list and examine it carefully. How does Erdrich describe it? Does she use mostly adjectives or does she convey meaning through nouns and verbs? Does she use any metaphors while describing your object...
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