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“She is too fond of books, and it has
turned her brain.” - Louisa May Alcott

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Bauer's Suggested Autobiography Questions

Grammar-stage Reading
  1. Look at the title, cover, and table of contents (looking for an overview of the writer's purpose.)
  2. What are the central events in the writer's life?
  3. What historical events coincide - or merge - with these personal events?
  4. Who is the most important person (or people) in the writer's life?  What events from the outline of that story?
  5. Give the book your own title and subtitle.
Logic-stage Reading
  1. What is the theme that ties the narrative together?
  2. Where is the life's turning point? Is there a "conversion"?
  3. For what does the writer apologize? In apologizing, how does the writer justify?
  4. What is the model - the ideal - for this person's life?
  5. What is the end of the life:  the place where the writer has arrived, found closure, discovered rest?
  6. Now revisit your first question:  What is the theme of this writer's life?
Rhetoric-state Reading
  1. Is the writer writing for himself, or for a group?
  2. What are the three moments, or time frames of the autobiography? (The time during which the events actually happened; the time during which the writer is putting the events on paper; and the time in which the autobiography is read.)
  3. Where does the writer's judgement lie?
  4. Do you reach a different conclusion from the writer about the pattern of his life?
  5. What have you brought away from this story?


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