As students, we all encounter terms that leave us scratching our heads. For language arts students, “external” is one of those terms. Although it’s commonly used in discussions and analyses, many students struggle to understand its meaning and significance in the field of language arts.
If you’re one of those students, don’t worry. In this article, we’ll unlock the mystery of this elusive term and delve into its various meanings and implications in language arts. By the end of this article, you’ll have a solid grasp of the concept and be better equipped to incorporate it into your own analyses and writing.
So, whether you’re preparing for an exam or simply want to deepen your knowledge of language arts, keep reading to discover the secrets of “external” and its role in this fascinating field.
Understanding the Definition of External
When it comes to language arts, the term “external” can be somewhat ambiguous. To understand what this term means in literature and writing, it is important to first examine its definition. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, “external” can be defined as “belonging to or forming the outer surface or structure of something.”
In the context of language arts, “external” often refers to elements outside of a literary work that can influence its interpretation. This can include historical, social, and cultural factors, as well as the author’s own life experiences. It is important to consider these external factors when analyzing a piece of literature to gain a more nuanced understanding of its meaning.
However, it is worth noting that the use of external analysis is not without controversy in literary criticism. Some argue that focusing too heavily on external factors can detract from the text itself, while others believe that external analysis is necessary for a complete understanding of a work. As with many aspects of literary criticism, the use of external analysis is a matter of ongoing debate.
The Basic Definition of External in Language Arts
The word external in language arts is often used to describe factors outside of a literary work that can influence its interpretation or meaning. These factors may include historical events, social and cultural contexts, and even the author’s personal life.
- Historical Context: The historical context of a literary work refers to the time period in which it was written and the events or ideas that were prevalent during that time.
- Social and Cultural Context: The social and cultural context of a literary work includes the customs, values, beliefs, and attitudes of the society in which it was created.
- Author’s Personal Life: An author’s personal life may also be considered external to a literary work. The author’s experiences, beliefs, and values can influence the themes and ideas present in their writing.
Understanding the external factors that can influence a literary work is essential to gaining a deeper understanding of the text and its meaning. By considering these factors, readers can analyze a work of literature within its proper historical, social, and cultural context and gain insights into the author’s intended message.
How External Differs from Internal in Literature
Understanding the difference between external and internal in literature is crucial in analyzing and interpreting literary works. External elements refer to those outside of the characters themselves, such as setting, time period, culture, and historical context. Internal elements, on the other hand, relate to the characters’ thoughts, emotions, motivations, and relationships with others.
Analyzing external elements can provide insight into how a character or group of characters may behave or react in a particular situation. Symbolism is often used to represent external elements in literature, helping readers better understand the significance of certain events or objects.
By contrast, analyzing internal elements provides a deeper understanding of a character’s motivations and emotions. Psychological analysis, for example, focuses on the internal workings of the characters’ minds, exploring their mental and emotional states and how they impact their actions and decisions.
The Role of External Analysis in Critical Reading
External analysis is a crucial element in critical reading, which involves interpreting a text in a way that goes beyond its surface-level meaning. Through external analysis, readers consider the text’s historical and cultural context, as well as the author’s background and intentions. This approach helps readers gain a deeper understanding of the text’s meaning and significance.
External analysis is particularly important when reading texts from different time periods or cultural backgrounds. By examining the external factors that influenced the author and their work, readers can gain insight into the text’s themes, motifs, and symbols.
Additionally, external analysis can help readers evaluate the text’s relevance to contemporary issues and concerns. By considering the historical and cultural context in which the text was written, readers can determine whether its themes and messages are still applicable today.
Exploring the Different Meanings of External in Language Arts
While the word “external” may seem straightforward, its use in language arts can have different meanings. In some contexts, it refers to elements outside of a text, while in others, it can refer to something outside of a character’s mind or body.
One meaning of “external” in literature is related to setting. External elements can include the time period, location, and social context of a story. These elements can shape characters and events, and help readers understand the text’s themes.
Another meaning of “external” is related to plot. External conflicts arise from factors outside of a character’s control, such as a natural disaster or social upheaval. These conflicts can drive the plot and add tension to a story.
External can also refer to a character’s relationships with other characters. External relationships can include family, friends, and romantic partners. These relationships can impact a character’s decisions and motivations, and shape the course of a story.
Finally, external can also refer to a text’s reception by readers or critics. External factors like historical context and literary traditions can influence how a text is understood and analyzed. An external analysis can help readers better understand a text’s place in literary history and its cultural significance.
By exploring the different meanings of “external” in language arts, we can deepen our understanding of how elements outside of a text can shape its meaning and impact.
The Use of External in Literary Analysis
The use of external sources in literary analysis is a common practice among scholars and students alike. It involves the incorporation of secondary sources into the analysis of a literary work to provide a deeper understanding of the text. Secondary sources can include books, articles, and essays written by other scholars and critics.
One of the benefits of using external sources in literary analysis is that it can provide context and background information about the author, the time period in which the work was written, and the literary movements and styles of the era. This information can help readers better understand the themes, motifs, and symbols within the text.
Another benefit of using external sources is that it can provide a broader range of perspectives on a text. By reading different interpretations and analyses of a work, readers can gain a deeper appreciation for its complexities and nuances. This can help readers develop their own critical thinking skills and engage with the text in a more meaningful way.
- Credibility – The use of external sources can add credibility to an analysis by providing evidence and support for the writer’s arguments and claims.
- Accuracy – External sources can also provide accurate and reliable information that may not be readily available within the text itself.
- Limitations – However, it is important to note that there are limitations to the use of external sources in literary analysis. It is important to critically evaluate and analyze the sources being used to ensure their relevance and credibility.
|Provides context and background information||May distract from the primary text||Evaluate sources for relevance and credibility|
|Offers a broader range of perspectives||May lead to over-reliance on external sources||Balance external sources with close reading of the text|
|Adds credibility and support to arguments||Can be time-consuming to locate and analyze sources||Use sources that enhance understanding of the text|
|Provides accurate and reliable information||May introduce biases or conflicting interpretations||Critically evaluate sources for objectivity and relevance|
|Can enhance critical thinking skills||May require advanced knowledge of literary theory and analysis||Balance external sources with personal interpretations and insights|
|External sources should supplement, not replace, close reading of the text|
In conclusion, the use of external sources in literary analysis can provide many benefits, including context, perspective, and support for arguments. However, it is important to carefully evaluate and analyze sources for relevance and credibility, and to balance external sources with close reading of the primary text. By doing so, readers can develop a deeper understanding and appreciation of the literature they are studying.
The Application of External in Creative Writing
External is a powerful tool in creative writing, allowing authors to draw upon real-life experiences and events to add depth and authenticity to their work. Through external, writers can capture the essence of a particular moment in time, place, or event, and use it to create a vivid and immersive world for their readers. From historical events to personal experiences, external can be applied in a variety of ways to enhance the storytelling experience.
One way in which external can be applied in creative writing is through the use of research. By conducting thorough research on a particular topic, setting, or event, writers can create a more accurate and detailed portrayal of their subject matter. This can be especially effective in historical fiction or non-fiction, where accuracy and attention to detail are crucial in maintaining the credibility of the story. By using external sources, such as books, articles, and interviews, writers can gain a deeper understanding of their subject and bring it to life on the page.
Another way in which external can be applied in creative writing is through the use of personal experience. Drawing on their own experiences and emotions, writers can create authentic and relatable characters and situations that resonate with readers. By using external sources, such as memories and observations, writers can add a layer of depth and complexity to their characters and plot, making them more realistic and engaging. This can be especially effective in autobiographical or semi-autobiographical works, where the author’s own experiences are central to the story.
Finally, external can be applied in creative writing through the use of sensory details. By incorporating external sensory details, such as sights, sounds, and smells, writers can create a more immersive and vivid experience for their readers. This can help to establish the mood and atmosphere of a particular scene or setting, making it more memorable and impactful. By using external sources, such as personal observations and memories, writers can create a more authentic and relatable sensory experience that resonates with readers.
- Research: Conducting thorough research on a particular topic, setting, or event to create a more accurate and detailed portrayal.
- Personal Experience: Drawing on their own experiences and emotions to create authentic and relatable characters and situations.
- Sensory Details: Incorporating external sensory details, such as sights, sounds, and smells, to create a more immersive and vivid experience for readers.
In conclusion, external is a powerful tool in creative writing that can be applied in a variety of ways to enhance the storytelling experience. Whether through research, personal experience, or sensory details, external can add depth, authenticity, and impact to a writer’s work, creating a more memorable and engaging reading experience for their audience.
The Importance of External Elements in Genre Studies
External elements, such as the cultural, historical, and social context, play a crucial role in genre studies. Understanding these external factors is essential to comprehend the conventions, themes, and tropes present in a particular genre.
Context is an essential external element in genre studies, as it allows us to understand how and why a particular genre emerged. For instance, detective fiction emerged during the late nineteenth century in response to the rise of scientific detection methods and the increasing public interest in crime. Understanding this context helps readers to appreciate how detective fiction reflected and commented on the social and cultural concerns of the time.
Culture is another external element that is important in genre studies, as it influences the creation and reception of genre. Different cultures have different literary traditions and conventions, and understanding these differences is vital to appreciate how genres vary across cultures. For instance, the Western genre, with its emphasis on rugged individualism and the frontier, has distinct roots in American culture.
History is also a crucial external element in genre studies. Historical events and developments shape the cultural and social context that gives rise to particular genres. For example, the dystopian genre emerged during the early twentieth century in response to the rise of totalitarianism and the anxieties surrounding technological advancement.
Examples of External in Literature and Writing
One of the most well-known examples of external elements in literature is the setting. In many stories, the location where the story takes place can have a significant impact on the plot and characters. For example, in Ernest Hemingway’s “The Old Man and the Sea,” the story’s setting of the Gulf Stream and the ocean greatly affects the old man’s struggle to catch a fish.
Another example of external elements in literature is symbolism. Symbolism can be used to represent something outside of the story itself, often with a deeper meaning. For instance, in Nathaniel Hawthorne’s “The Scarlet Letter,” the letter ‘A’ is used as a symbol to represent adultery and the societal consequences that come with it.
In creative writing, an external element that is often used is research. Whether writing historical fiction or science fiction, it’s crucial for writers to conduct research and gather information to make their stories more believable and accurate. For example, Jules Verne’s “Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea” includes detailed descriptions of marine life and oceanography.
Another way external elements can be used in creative writing is through intertextuality. This refers to the use of references to other works of literature or art within a story. For instance, in T.S. Eliot’s “The Waste Land,” he includes references to Shakespeare’s “Hamlet” and other literary works, creating a sense of depth and complexity to his poem.
External Conflict in “The Great Gatsby”
One of the primary examples of external conflict in “The Great Gatsby” is the tension between Gatsby and Tom Buchanan. Gatsby is trying to win back his lost love, Daisy, while she is married to Tom. The two men are in constant competition for Daisy’s affections, which leads to heated arguments and ultimately tragic consequences. This conflict is exacerbated by the fact that Gatsby is a self-made man from humble beginnings, while Tom comes from old money and has a sense of entitlement.
Another example of external conflict in the novel is the clash between Gatsby’s romantic idealism and the reality of the corrupt and superficial world of the wealthy elite. Gatsby is so focused on his vision of the perfect life with Daisy that he is blind to the corruption and deceit that surround him. This conflict ultimately leads to Gatsby’s downfall, as he is unable to reconcile his dreams with the reality of the world he inhabits.
The conflict between Gatsby and the society he longs to be a part of is also an important external conflict in the novel. Gatsby is constantly striving to fit in with the wealthy elite of East Egg, but he is ultimately an outsider who will never truly belong. This conflict is represented by the green light at the end of Daisy’s dock, which symbolizes Gatsby’s longing for acceptance and belonging.
The external conflict between Gatsby and the law is another significant element of the novel. Gatsby’s illegal activities, such as bootlegging and gambling, put him in direct conflict with the authorities. This conflict comes to a head with Gatsby’s murder, which is the tragic culmination of his attempt to live outside the law.
How to Incorporate External Analysis in Your Writing
External analysis is an essential part of any writing, as it adds depth and meaning to your work. The following are some tips for incorporating external analysis into your writing:
Research: Do your research to understand the historical, cultural, and social context of your topic. This will help you to identify external elements that can be incorporated into your writing.
Incorporate it seamlessly: Incorporate external elements seamlessly into your writing, so that it doesn’t feel like an afterthought. Make sure it is essential to the plot or theme of your work.
Use diverse sources: Use a variety of sources to ensure a well-rounded analysis. This can include literature, history books, news articles, and personal accounts.
By following these tips, you can incorporate external analysis in your writing and create more nuanced and meaningful work.
Identifying External Elements in a Text
When analyzing a text, it’s important to consider the external elements that may have influenced the author’s writing. One key factor to consider is the cultural context in which the text was produced. Understanding the social, political, and historical context of the time period can provide important insights into the author’s message and themes.
Another external element to consider is the geographical setting of the text. The physical environment in which the story takes place can influence the characters’ behavior and the overall tone of the story. For example, a story set in a bleak, desolate landscape may have a more somber mood than one set in a lush, vibrant setting.
Finally, it’s important to consider the historical context of the text. This includes not only the time period in which the story was written, but also the historical events that may have influenced the author’s writing. For example, a story written during a time of war may have a different perspective on violence and conflict than one written during a time of peace.
Incorporating External Analysis in Literary Essays
When writing a literary essay, it’s essential to include external analysis to support your arguments. Start by identifying relevant scholarly sources that discuss your topic or theme. Use these sources to gain a deeper understanding of the text and its external context.
Next, consider how cultural or historical events may have influenced the author or the text. This can help you develop a more nuanced analysis and provide evidence to support your claims.
Finally, remember to include your own interpretation of the text, informed by your analysis of external elements. This will help you craft a unique argument and engage with the text in a meaningful way.
The Importance of External Analysis in Language Arts
Enhances critical thinking: Incorporating external analysis in language arts enhances critical thinking skills. By analyzing external elements, students learn to think beyond the text and explore how external factors impact the author’s message.
Develops research skills: External analysis requires research skills to identify and analyze external elements. Through researching, students learn how to locate and evaluate credible sources.
Improves writing skills: Incorporating external analysis in writing assignments helps students to develop their writing skills. By including external analysis, students learn how to develop arguments and support them with evidence.
Encourages creativity: External analysis encourages creativity in language arts. By analyzing how external elements impact the text, students can explore new perspectives and generate unique ideas.
Prepares students for future careers: Many careers require strong analytical and research skills. By incorporating external analysis in language arts, students develop the necessary skills to excel in their future careers.
The Value of Analyzing External Elements in Understanding a Text
External analysis is crucial to understanding a text in its proper context. By analyzing cultural, historical, and social elements, readers can better understand the themes, symbols, and characters presented in a work of literature. Understanding the context in which a work was created can provide insight into the author’s motivations, beliefs, and perspectives. External analysis can also reveal how a work may have been received by its contemporary audience, and how its impact may have changed over time.
Furthermore, external analysis can help readers engage more deeply with a text and its meaning. By considering the historical, cultural, and social context in which a work was written, readers can uncover the underlying messages and values that may have been intended by the author. By identifying and analyzing the external elements present in a text, readers can also develop a more nuanced understanding of the ways in which literature reflects and shapes society.
Overall, external analysis is a valuable tool for understanding and appreciating literature in its proper context. By examining the cultural, historical, and social elements that shape a work of literature, readers can gain a deeper understanding of its meaning and significance. Through external analysis, readers can also better appreciate the ways in which literature reflects and responds to the world around us.
Mastering the Art of External Analysis: Tips and Tricks
Pay attention to context: External elements are often influenced by the historical, social, and cultural context of a text. Understanding these contexts can deepen your analysis of external elements.
Look for patterns: Identifying patterns in external elements, such as recurring symbols or motifs, can provide insight into the themes and meaning of a text.
Consider the author’s intent: Authors often use external elements intentionally to convey certain messages or ideas. Considering the author’s intent can help you interpret and analyze these elements.
Use multiple perspectives: Analyzing external elements from different perspectives, such as feminist or postcolonial, can provide a more nuanced understanding of a text.
Practice, practice, practice: The more you practice analyzing external elements, the better you’ll become at it. Keep reading and analyzing texts, and seek feedback from peers or instructors to improve your skills.
Reading Strategies for Identifying External Elements
One effective reading strategy for identifying external elements in a text is to pay attention to setting. The time and place in which a story takes place can reveal a lot about its external context. Additionally, paying attention to character relationships can provide insight into external conflicts that drive the plot.
Another helpful strategy is to consider the author’s background and experiences. An author’s personal history and cultural context can greatly inform their writing and add layers of external meaning to a text.
Finally, it’s important to look at historical events and social movements that may have influenced a work of literature. Understanding the external context in which a text was written can greatly enhance one’s understanding and appreciation of it.
Effective Ways to Incorporate External Analysis in Your Writing
Start by reading and analyzing the text thoroughly. Take note of any external factors that may have influenced the author’s writing, such as historical events or cultural influences.
Research the time period in which the text was written and consider any socioeconomic factors that may have played a role in shaping the author’s perspective.
Use credible sources to gather information about the external factors you’ve identified, such as scholarly articles or historical documents.
Incorporate your analysis of external factors into your writing by discussing how they influenced the author’s work and contributed to the themes or messages present in the text.
Be sure to provide specific examples from the text to support your analysis and make connections between the external factors and the literary elements of the text, such as plot, character development, and symbolism.
Frequently Asked Questions
How is external defined in language arts?
In language arts, external refers to factors outside of the text that can impact its meaning, such as historical context, social and cultural norms, and authorial intent.
What are some examples of external elements in literature?
External elements in literature can include political events, societal values, and cultural traditions. For example, the setting of a story or the time period in which it was written can be important external elements that shape its meaning.
Why is analyzing external factors important in literary analysis?
Analyzing external factors is important in literary analysis because it provides a deeper understanding of the text and its context. By examining external factors, readers can better understand the author’s purpose, message, and the societal and cultural influences that shaped the text.
How can external analysis be incorporated into literary essays?
External analysis can be incorporated into literary essays by providing context and using outside sources to support the analysis of the text. Additionally, examining how external factors relate to the themes and motifs of the text can provide a more comprehensive understanding of its meaning.
What skills are necessary for effectively analyzing external elements in literature?
Effectively analyzing external elements in literature requires strong research skills, critical thinking, and an understanding of historical and cultural context. It is also important to be able to make connections between external elements and the text in order to draw meaningful conclusions about the text’s meaning.