Feedback on Dr. Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream.”

ENG 101 – Fall 2015

Instructor: Ryan Edel

Basic Rubric

In the group quiz, one of the most important elements I was looking for was each group’s ability to find and convey specific examples to support their answers.  For this quiz, each of the four questions was worth 5 points (20 points total).  I followed this scoring system for each individual answer:

  • 3 points: You answered the question, indicating the type of example that would support your answer (e.g. “Dr. King referenced mountains and hills in order to indicate the need for equality.)

  • 4 points: You answered the question while providing at least one very concrete example or two decent examples to support your point (e.g. “Dr. King frequently referenced Alabama and MIssissippi because of the strong racial tensions that had been seen in these states, and he then included locations like New York and California to indicate that the Civil Rights Movement is addressing injustices occurring across the entire nation.”)

  • 5 points: You answered the question while providing three good examples to support your point, or you provided at least two very good examples and a tie-in with one of the CHAT terms (e.g. “Dr. King voiced his hope that the descendents of slaves and slaveholders would meet as equals on a mountaintop in Georgia, and he also hoped that his own children would be ‘judged based not on the color of their skin, but on the content of their character.’ These examples indicate that his intended socialization was not the ‘reversal’ of racism or the elimination of difference, but rather a shift in perspective so that all people would see their fellow Americans as equally deserving of respect and opportunity.”)

CHAT terms

Since the CHAT terms are still very new, I did see some misunderstandings about how the CHAT terms are applied.  Here are the common issues I saw:

  • Ecology: The CHAT term ecology is rather different from the environmentalist use of the term.  With ecology, we aren’t describing simply the natural environment, but rather any physical aspect of the writing environment that affects how genres are produced.  Technology is a good place to see this distinction – in popular usage, “ecology” might refer to the Great Barrier Reef, and the technology of the boat might simply disturb that natural ecology.  For the writer, though, we’d look at how every physical aspect affects what can be written – thus, the rocking of a boat might make it difficult to jot down notes, while salt spray can ruin the paper, whereas someone with more money could purchase water-resistant paper and a clipboard or even a waterproof tablet with a voice recorder.  Thus, for the “I Have a Dream” speech, we’re concerned with the types of resources it took to position the cameras and then edit the footage, and then how the footage would have been distributed (and to whom) via television of that era.