Q:

How do you critique an article?

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Quick Answer

A successful critique of an article should identify, evaluate and respond to the ideas presented in the article. A critique considers an article's content from different perspectives and attempts to respond to it objectively, using evidence.

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Full Answer

A critique is not the same as criticism, which implies a judgment of an article's merits. A critique can offer criticism, but it also seeks to understand the author's perspective and position that perspective within a wider discourse, rather than merely criticizing. A critique must first identify the article's purpose. What is the background of the subject being discussed? Why was the article written? What issues does the article address, and what is the author's perspective on these issues?

Next, the critique must evaluate the author's argument. Is it well-argued and convincing? What assumptions does it make? Does the argument contain fallacies or suffer from a lack of evidence? Where is the article positioned in the current discourse surrounding the issue? Does it add anything useful to the debate? In order to productively critique an article, the critique must be informed by a wide knowledge of the subject being discussed.

Finally, the critique must respond to the article, offering an assessment of its overall effectiveness and usefulness. A critique needs to consider not just the issues an article raises, but also the issues it avoids.

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