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What are Significant Sections?

Ask yourself: What are the most vital and deep parts of this text?
The best advice is to look for areas that resonate throughout a
text, and to find those parts that have tremendous implications
or meaning.

do you
in your
notes?to explain WHY a
As well,
is not
a single

section is significant. Use your own insight and judgement.

To help you sort out what could be significant, here is a list; now
decide where YOU see these aspects in the text.

Personal Reasons
related to an experience you/someone you know had
wording captured your attention
enjoyed the idea the section communicated
Artistic Reasons
creating mood (what is the mood?)
revealing tone (what is the tone?)
providing expository information (antecedent information,
setting, relationships among characters)
establishing point of view
creating, develop or resolve conflict
foreshadowing coming events or behaviors
motivate character(what drives a character, what makes
them do what they do]
developing character [indirect development how others
describe the characters physical attributes/personality; direct
development words, actions and thoughts of the character.)
revealing change in character
setting up a contrast or foil

A section can be as long, or as short as YOU want it to be.

Your section perhaps may consist of 2 sentences from
different parts of the text. (i.e. a sentence from pg 3, and a
sentence from pg 6 could be considered as ONE section)
Basically, anywhere from 3 words to 3 paragraphs is fine.

How should these be recorded as notes?

Do 3 things: 1) write out the Section, then 2) explain
WHY it is significant (use the list if you need to), and 3)
finally record the page number when possible so you can
reference your selections later.
If the Section is longer than 1 sentence, then just write
down the first 5 words, put an ellipsis . . . and then write
the last five words. (I went to the store . . . as I left for
Want to see an example?

e.g. . . but they were Havefords, in Maycomb County a name synonymous with
jackass. (p 5) This is very symbolic of how Maycomb works, as every family
name has an aura or specific personality associated with it. . In the eyes of
townspeople, no one really has their own identity, but rather people belong to a
family name which has an inherent set of traits. In this case, well, there is a clear
statement about the association that Haverford has for Scout, and seemingly for
many others. This later connects to Atticus, Scout and Jem being called niggerlovers, as this is the trait they have been branded with by most of the town. It
symbolizes the narrow perspective many of the townspeople possess, because if
their views were open, generalities like a name synonymous with would not be
- From To Kill a Mockingbird