Testaments Betrayed Ap Essay Question

Sir Gawain and the Green Knight


Write an original article about SGAK. Go to Articles Needed for instructions.


 Standing Conversation template:  gawain_standing.pub


The Big Ideas:

  • As Medieval literature, SGAK can be read in light of the four "pillars" of Medieval philosophy and ethics: Greek philosophy, Roman law (the natural law), Old Testament justice (submission), and New Testament ethics (caritas).
  • The Medieval mind saw everything as a theophany-- a microcosm of a higher, divine reality. Arthur's court, for example, is a theophany or microcosm of the court of heaven ruled by God; Gawain's armor is a theophany of the divine grace that protects people from evil. Much Medieval literature, therefore, is allegorical. See a discussion of allegory inLiterary Terms.
  • LIfe is an iter mentis ad deo-- a journey or pilgrimage to the divine. Those who pratice caritas-- submission to God and concern for others-- would ascend to that higher reality. Those ensnared in cupiditas-- self-serving and selfish love-- would be punished.
  • SGAK is unique among the romances of the period because of its ironic tone and sarcastic wit.

  • Levels of Interpretation:

  • Learn how to analyze the metaphorical values of an image, particularly the green girdle.



The Unicorn Tapestries

an example of Medieval allegorical art that can be read on several interpretive levels:






  • Prominent motifs:

  • games
  • armor
  • hunting

SGAK is alliterative verse:

An excerpt from the poem in the original mid-14th century dialect: Sir Gawain excerpt

Karass Quests

Each karass quest is worth 30 class points for karass members who are present: 12 points for the discussion, 12 for the quality of the presentation, and 6 for trenchant and insightful close reading. If you are absent for a karass quest, see the makeup quest at the end of each page.


Sir Gawain Fit 1


Sir Gawain Fit 2


Sir Gawain Fit 3


Sir Gawain Fit 4



 AP exam prompts


Go to the AP Writing Gateway Page


AP exam essay prompts relevant to SGAK

The prompts below are from recent AP exams in Literature. You will choose one and respond in terms of SGAK.



2006, Form B. In many works of literature, a physical journey - the literal movement from one place to another - plays a central role. Choose a novel, play, or epic poem in which a physical journey is an important element and discuss how the journey adds to the meaning of the work as a whole. Avoid mere plot summary.


Go to http://apcentral.collegeboard.com/apc/members/repository/ap06_englishlit_formB_samples_q3.pdf for sample essays and scoring commentary on this prompt.


2007, Form B. Works of literature often depict acts of betrayal. Friends and even family may betray a protagonist; main characters may likewise be guilty of treachery or may betray their own values. Select a novel or play that includes such acts of betrayal. Then, in a well-written essay, analyze the nature of the betrayal and show how it contributes to the meaning of the work as a whole.


Go to http://apcentral.collegeboard.com/apc/public/repository/ap07_englit_formb_q3.pdf for sample essays and scoring commentrary on this prompt.


Sir Gawain Music


 Angelus ad Virginem.doc "Angelus ad virginem," a medieval Christmas carol that would have been sung at court, not in church. 


 Alma Redemptoris Mater.doc "Alma Redemptoris Mater," a chant you would hear in church or a monastery


"Ne Qu'on Porroit"

A Medieval Love Song by Guillaume de Machaut (b.1300?- d. 1377) 


Ne qu'on porroit les estoiles nombrer,
Quant on les voit luire plus clerement,
Et les goutes de pluie et de la mer,
Et la greve seur quoy elle s'estent,
Et compasser le tour dou firmament,
Ne porroit on penser ne concevoir
Le grant desir que j'ay de vous veoir.


(It is no more possible to count the stars
Shining so brightly up above
And the rain drops and the sea
And the shore along which it stretches
And measure the breadth of the heavens
Than it is to imagine or conceive of
The great desire I have to see you.)



Quant la doulce jouvencelle

Text: http://asteriamusica.org/texts/01quant.html





Presentation on theme: "AP English Language and Composition Course"— Presentation transcript:

1 AP English Language and Composition Course
Don Stoll, Associate ProfessorWriting Arts DepartmentRowan University

2 Self Introduction…Prepare a 2-minute self introduction for a specific audience – the participants in this workshopPurpose– to make audience want you on their team –Include relevant personal information, professional information, reason(s) for taking the workshop, etc.

3 The AP English Language & Composition Course
Course RequirementsTeacherCurriculumLearning OutcomesThe Test

4 TeacherTeacher has read the most recent AP English Course Description available on the AP English Language and Composition Course Home PageCourse teaches and requires students to write in several forms about a variety of subjects

5 Course requires students to…
write essays that proceed through several stages/drafts with revision aided by teachers and peersWrite in informal contexts designed to help them become increasingly aware of themselves as writers and of the techniques employed by the writers they read

6 Course requires…Expository, analytical, and argumentative writing assignments based on readings representing a wide variety of prose styles and genresNonfiction readings selected to give students opportunities to identify and explain an author’s use of rhetorical strategies and techniques.

7 Course teaches…students to analyze how graphics and visual images both relate to written texts and serve as alternate forms of texts themselvesresearch skills, in particular the ability to evaluate, use and cite primary and secondary sources by assigning projects that ask students to present an argument of their own that includes the analysis and synthesis of ideas from an array of sources

8 AP Teacher provides instruction and feedback that help students develop…
A wide-ranging vocabularyA variety of sentence structureLogical organizationA balance of generalization and specific illustrative detailAn effective use of rhetoric including controlling tone, clear voice, and appropriate emphasis through diction and sentence structure

9 AP English Language Course Outcomes
A description of the learning outcomes and the means to achieve & assess these outcomes

10 We want our students to… Read Well
Learning Goals:Denotation & ConnotationInference & ImplicationRead a variety of texts from a variety of genres and historical periodsUnderstand the conventions of the genres and their relationship to rhetorical situationsDenotation - The explicit or direct meaning or set of meanings of a word or expression, as distinguished from the ideas or meanings associated with it or suggested by it; the association or set of associations that a word usually elicits for most speakers of a language, as distinguished from those elicited for any individual speaker because of personal experience.Connotation - the associated or secondary meaning of a word or expression in addition to its explicit or primary meaning: A possible connotation of “home” is “a place of warmth, comfort, and affection.”Inference - reasoning from factual knowledge or evidenceImplication - a meaning that is not expressly stated but can be inferred

11 We want our students to… Understand and Follow Directions
Read essay prompts accuratelyRecognize there is a pattern to the prompts -Read the selectionWrite an essay in which you…Pay close attention to the word following “you”AnalyzeDevelopSupport, refute, qualifyCharacterizeTake a position on

12 We want our students to… Think Critically
Thinking should not be programmatic nor simplisticWhat Constitutes Critical Thinking SkillsFinding analogies and other kinds of relationships between pieces of information
Determining the relevance and validity of information that could be used for structuring and solving problemsFinding and evaluating solutions or alternative ways of treating problems

13 Critical Thinking #2-Getting below the Surface
Understanding the meaning of a text before identifying writer’s strategies and techniquesTo begin by identifying the techniques often leads to a list of parts that may only tangentially relate to the meaning of the text

14 We want our students to… Have Persuasion Skills
The responsibility of a writer is to convince the reader the writers’ POV is viableWe teach persuasion techniques and devices and we want our students to…Incorporate these skills into their own persuasive, descriptive, and analytical writing

15 We want our students to… Select Evidence Effectively
Teach students to use evidence for which they can provide a clear rationaleEschew novels or other literary texts to gain false credence for an argumentEvidence fails to convince if the reader cannot fully grasp its relevance

16 We want our students to… Effectively Select Details
Students must understand the difference between “telling” details and details that merely “pad”More details are not necessarily betterThree examples may or may not be better than two

17 We want our students to… Effectively Decipher Text
The trinity of stylistic analysis - imagery, diction, and syntax - is a useful tool to understand how a writer has accomplished the effect.But…tools are only as good as what they accomplish - they have minimal intrinsic value. Maintain balance.

18 We want our students to… Develop Ethos
Personal essays have valueStudents need to learn the value of establishing ethos as a tool in convincing the reader the writer’s POV is viable.Students need to learn how to present personal experience as relevant and appropriate evidence.

19 We want our students to… Go Beyond the 5-Paragraph Essay
5-paragraph essay and other formulistic methods cause more problems than they solve….Lack of individual voiceLimitation of Invention to three pointsIgnoring salient issues and belaboring the obviousCan annoy reader…

20 We want our students to… Develope Personal Voice
Urge students to risk making their own perceptive claimsUrge students to create their own organic structuresEncourage risk takingFlawed “something” is almost always preferable to the well-wrought “nothing”

21 Course teaches…students how to cite sources using a recognized editorial styleMLAAPAChicago Manual of Style

22 Overview I. Preparation for the Exam II. The Exam III. The Prompts
IV. Scoring

23 II. The AP English Exam Date - Wednesday, May 12, 2010 8am
Website - apcentral.collegeboard.com/apcThe fee for each AP Exam is $86.Fee Reduction - The College Board provides a $22 fee reduction per exam for qualified students with acute financial need. For each eligible student, schools should also forgo their $8 rebate. Thus, eligible students pay $56 per exam.

24 II. The AP English Exam Exam Structure How the exam is constructed
Committee of 8 (4/4)Psychometricians & SpecialistsTesting Questions

25 II. The AP English Exam Committee

26 II. The AP English Exam Section I - Multiple Choice Questions
45% of gradequestions on 6 readings60 minutes allotted

27 II. The AP English Exam Advice on Multiple Choice Questions
First look at and then scan all the readingsNote the number of questions associated with each reading - pick readings with the largest number of questionsAnswer the easy questions first - there are easy and hard questions on each reading

28 II. The AP English Exam Advice on Multiple Choice Questions
Of the five choices…4 are “distracters”1 is clearly wrong1 is partially wrong1 is the opposite of the right answer1 is nearly right1 is right (key)Guess… if you can reduce the possible answers to at least 3 - better 2If the answer is obvious, it is usually right

29 II. The AP English Exam Advice on Multiple Choice Questions
New Question - At least one of the readings will include footnotes and there will be questions associated with that reading that refer to the footnotes

30 II. The AP English Exam Section II - Free Response Questions
55% of grade3 Questions135 minutes allotted of which 15 minutes is devoted to reading provided sources for the “synthesis” question

31 II. The AP English Exam Section II - Free Response Questions
Advice on Free Response QuestionsScan all the questions and pick the easiest for you - maybe start with the “synthesis” questionPlan before writing and identify examples you plan to useTiming - give yourself time for all three essaysRelationship between short answer and essays

32 III. The Prompts Read the prompts carefully -
Recognize there is a pattern to the prompts -Read the selectionWrite an essay in which you……Pay close attention to the word following “you”

33 III. The PromptsThe passage below is an excerpt from What are People For? By Wendell Berry. Read the passage carefully. Then write an essay in which you support, refute, or qualify Berry’s argument. Use appropriate evidence to develop your position.

34 III. The Prompts“Below are excerpts from a crucial scene in Shakespeare’s play Julius Caesar…. Read the excepts carefully. Then write an essay in which you analyze the rhetoric of both arguments and explain why you think the Caesar finds Decius’s argument more persuasive than Calphurnia’s. You may want to consider such elements as choice of detail, use of appeals, and understanding of audience.”

35 III. The Prompts“The following passage concludes an essay by Edward Abbey about Aravaipa Canyon in New Mexico. Read the passage carefully. Then write an essay in which you characterize Abbey’s attitudes toward nature and analyze how Abbey conveys these views.”

36 III. The Prompts“From talk radio to television shows, from popular magazines to Web blogs, ordinary citizens, political figures, and entertainers express their opinions on a wide range of topics. Are these opinions worthwhile? Does the expression of such opinions foster dramatic values?Write an essay in which you take a position on the value of such public statements of opinion, supporting your view with appropriate evidence.”

37 III. The Prompts“The passage below is an excerpt from “On Want of Money,” an essay written by nineteenth-century author William Hazlitt. Read the passage carefully. Then write an essay in which you analyze the rhetorical strategies Hazlitt uses to develop his position about money.”

38 III. The Prompts“The passage below is an excerpt from Jennifer Price’s recent essay “The Plastic Pink Flamingo: A Natural History.” The essay examines the popularity of the plastic pink flamingo in the 1950s. Read the passage carefully. Then write an essay in which you analyze how Price crafts the text to reveal her view of United States culture.”

39 III. The Prompts“The following prompt is based on the accompanying six sources. The question requires you to integrate a variety of sources into a coherent, well-written essay. Refer to the sources to support your position: avoid mere paraphrase or summary. Your argument should be central; the sources should support this argument.Remember to attribute both the direct and indirect citations.Television has been influential in United States presidential elections since the 1960’s. But just what is this influence and how has it affected who is elected? Has it made elections fairer and more accessible, or has it moved candidates from pursuing issues to pursuing image?Read the following sources (including any introductory information) carefully. Then, in an essay that synthesizes at least three of the sources for support, take a position that defends, challenges, or qualifies the claim that television has had a positive impact on presidential elections.”

40 The Scoring The reading context The training The Rubric
The instructions to readersInsider tips

41 The Scoring 2002 Free-response essay - rangefinders
“Carefully read the following passage from Testaments Betrayed, by the Czech writer Milan Kundera. Then write an essay in which you support, qualify, or dispute Kundera's claim. Support your argument with appropriate evidence.”


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