Journal Ten: Bradstreet
Here are two notions of analysis it's good to keep in mind: "Analysis is the method we commonly use in thinking about complex matters and in attempting to account for our responses” (57) and "Critical thinking [like analysis] is a matter of separating the whole into parts, in order to see relationships” (Literature for Analysis 179). The question is, how do we do this? One way, for poems in particular, is the DROP method:
Details: Look for exact details in the text—identical or nearly identical words or details-and list them.
Repetitions:Locate and list repetitions of the same kind of detail or word (for example, war, struggle, conflict and strife are similar words). Similarities in style or structure can also be important, such as the author using four lines per stanza or beginning each paragraph with a question. Noting repetitions reveals emphasis.
Oppositions: Locate and list details or words or forms that suggest binary oppositions or things that contrast with one another. Look for the same sorts of things you looked at/for with the use of repetition.
Patters of Significance: Choose what you think to be significant patterns of repetitions and/or binary oppositions and rank them in order of importance.
As you move from the collection of details to the analysis of Bradstreet's writings, you might focus your attention on such things as Puritanism in general, the place of women in Puritan society (the good, the bad, the ugly), or the various insights we gain into Puritan domestic life. These, of course, are just suggestions.
Having completed these steps, write a paragraph that examines each her writings (poems and prose) and explain why it is worth examination. Respond to at least two journals from your classmates, one of which should be a response to your journals.