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Firstly, pick what you consider to be essential passagesone or two key momentsin Charles Dickenss Bleak House, and begin to untangle the scenes/passages through the discussion of form available in Levines Forms. Limit your discussion to two different forms. After selecting the passage and form, start describing and quoting Levines argument about the form youve chosen, and make it a point of departure for your analysis of the selected passage/scene. Work out how the form youve chosen affords meaning in the key passage(s) you selected.

You do not have to limit yourself to one key passage, but it is perfectly fine to stay with only one passage for your analysis. However, you do need to process your analysis through two forms (two out of the four: whole, rhythm, hierarchy, network).

This part of the exam is worth 20 points.

Secondly, in your discussion, reference at least one of the articles and excerpts we have read alongside Forms. Make sure that you quote the text correctly and that you explain its relevance for your argument.

This part of the exam is worth 10 points.

Thirdly, try to move to the extended abstract level of the SOLO taxonomy mentioned above. Do this by referencing what Levine calls a political reading. Here is how Levine expresses it:

Is this what critics do? Do we spin out implied stories in which new forms take shape beyond a narratives end? This probably does not sound like our usual account of literary reading, but I want to suggest, in closing, that most politically minded critics do precisely this. They attend to the political forms within the text in order to generalize them beyond the texts own example, extending the political ordering principles that are at work in the text to understand its implied rules for ordering the extra-textual world. It is the portability of political form that permits these readings to happen at all, and it is our own ideas about how these forms operate in the world that guide or govern our assessment of the politics of literary texts. This means that acts of political reading routinely rely on implicit models of the plausible unfolding of forms” (110).

Here you have a chance to provide your own informed opinion about the political, social, or cultural relevance of the passage you have been working on.


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