Say – Mean – Matter
To help you critically analyse texts a basic strategy to use is SAY – MEAN – MATTER. Remember that interpreting texts means looking for meaning and reading at a deeper level. This means not just finding out what happens in the plot. You also need to:
· Discover the reasons why the author/director may have constructed events they way they did
· Understand how the themes and ideas are conveyed
· Identify the style features and conventions used by the author
· Understand the authors point of view and how they position the reader
· Identify the cultural, social and historical values in the text
· Understand different readings and alternative points of view
If you are looking for excellence grades think about MATTER and integrate your ideas into your essays.
|What happens in the text?
Give a summary of the text.
Use quotes or paraphrase
Include the most important details.
|Read “between the lines.”
What do the characters’ words or actions make you think?
How do the actions affect the plot, themes or your view of the characters?
|What does the author want you (the reader/viewer) to learn?
What is the message, meaning or moral?
What do you learn about yourself, relationships or the world from this text?