Graff and Birkenstein-Good Summarizing

A summary is putting somebody else’s literature into your own words. You put┬áthe main idea, a few key details, and anything important from the text into the summary. Although we all know just what a summary is, not everybody can summarize so well. A high quality summary takes what you are restating from the literature, and then it adds a slight hint towards what you are trying to argue.Most simply put, it’s a balance between giving credit to the writer, and also keeping what you are saying your own. There is no point in summarizing if we have nothing to say about it. As we must summarize before discussing a piece of literature, or maybe arguing a point stated, we must be respectful to others. We must be as unbiased as possible while still implicating our own thoughts on the topic. It shows that you not only understand what you are arguing, or discussing, but it also shows you have formulated your opinion off of something somebody has said, which is a perfect thing to do with the “they say, I say” method. When we give credit to somebody for their argument, they are more likely to listen, and overall our argument becomes better because it shows we have seen at least one other perspective.

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