Lesson 1 (from A Prelude, Chapter 1, In Mendia Res, Arizona, and Chapter 2, 1927-37: Stump Creek, West Virginia)
A Prelude, Chapter 1, In Media Res, Arizona, and Chapter 2, 1927-37: Stump Creek, West Virginia
The first chapter introduces us to Edward Abbey and also to his writing style. This lesson discusses Abbey's writing and how it reveals his style and temperament.
1. Close Reading: Read the first few paragraphs and analyze the writing style. How does Abbey write? What kinds of words does he use? How are his sentences structured?
2. Small Group Discussion: Ask students to work together in small groups to characterize Abbey's style. When or how does he vary from that cadence ? What does he emphasize when he varies from his typical sentences? Ask each group to report back to the class after some time for discussion.
3. Class Discussion: How would you characterize Abbey's values as a writer? What does he talk about? What does he omit from his narration--feelings, politics, philosophy, analysis, etc...
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