IB DP Language A Language and Literature -sample text analysis – editorial on Aleksei Navalny

Text: “The Extraordinary Courage of Aleksei Navalny.” New York Times. https://www.nytimes.com/2021/01/17/opinion/aleksei-navalny-russia.html

Before you read the “spoiler” bullet points below take a careful look at the text. Imagine it is a text you are using for your DP Language A Language and Literature assessments ( Paper 1, the individual oral, the HL essay,) and analyze it accordingly. This text would not be appropriate for Paper 2.

Paper 1: first take a careful look at criteria A and B . Then, consider how you would approach this particular text in light of the requirements of criteria A and B.

Individual oral: Start by looking at criteria A and B for the IO. There are some similarities between the criteria in the individual oral and those in Paper 1. However, the individual oral also requires students to make connections between extracts from a work and body of work. The individual oral must make connections with the global issue that the student has chosen. Consider how this text is linked to different global issues.

HL essay: The HL essay is an in-depth analysis of a non-literary body of work or a literary work the student has studied in class. Imagine this text is from a non-literary body of work and consider possible approaches you could take with the 1200-1500 word HL essay. This could include evaluating connections between this text and the seven central concepts in DP Language A Language and Literature.

Some elements of this text to consider:

  • The characteristics of an editorial and how an editorial differs from an opinion-editorial or news article
  • The typical register, style, etc. of the writing found in the New York Times
  • The general audience of the New York Times and the more specific audience for this editorial
  • The choice of photo – quite a powerful as Aleksei Navalny is looking right into the camera
  • The strong language used such as “President Vladimir Putin’s political goons had poisoned him,” “a corrupt and authoritarian regime” which clearly indicate the hard line that the editorial board is taking on Russia’s treatment of Aleksei Navalny

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