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    Feedback on a Chreia composition

    Hello, I'm new to the forum and unsure of whether this is an appropriate place to pose this question. If it's not the right forum, please let me know.
    DD has just started Chreia. The format is new to me, and I'd appreciate feedback on her composition so I can have a better idea of how to guide her. Thanks in advance!
    ---
    "I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just." - Thomas Jefferson

    One should praise the wise leadership of Thomas Jefferson. So eloquent was he that he was able to write such great works as the Declaration of Independence. He inspired the American colonists to break free from the tyranny of Great Britain and form their own nation. He served as the third president of the independent United States. Thomas Jefferson's insightful ideas are so numerous that there is not time enough to name them. Therefore, consider only his wise remark about justice.

    Thomas Jefferson wrote that he feared for his land when he recalled that the Lord despises wrongdoing. Admiring his prudence, contemplate the benefits of righteousness.

    If a nation strives to be meek, it will profit from its wise choice. For a humble, submissive country will be blessed for its fear of God. Instead of being subject to the wrath of divine judgement, the nation will experience the favor of the Lord.

    However, if a country does not attempt to change its evil ways, it shall surely be punished. Those who consider only the present, thinking of the easiest courses to wealth, shll be caught unaware on the day of condemnation. For the Lord himself warned that his coming would be like a thief in the night. God's anger shall rage against the unrighteous, and they shall regret their choice to turn toward evil.

    Not only shall the wicked be tortured on the day of justice, wrongdoers are also chastised now. It is obvious that an irresponsible debtor who knows that he should return what he owes but avoids repaying his debt shall be thrown into debtor's prison by his creditor. Likewise, an unrighteous nation which purposefully sins and does not alter its choices shall surely face God's discipline.

    Consider the story of the unmerciful servant. One servant who owed his master a great debt begged to be forgiven. When his master cancelled his debt, he immediately began to seek eagerly for one of his fellow servants who owed him only a small amount. The servant who had so recently been forgiven threatened his comrade with imprisonment if he would not pay his debt. Upon finding that his companion was unable to repay what was due, the unmerciful servant jailed his debtor. When news of this cruel deed reached the ears of the master, he immediately commanded that the merciless servant be confined and tortured ruthlessly. So shall those who are evil be punished for their deeds.

    Even the Psalms do not fail to recognize the truth in Thomas Jefferson's saying. Psalm 1 declares, "Not so the wicked? They are like the chaff that the wind blows away. Therefore, the wicked will not stand in the judgement, nor sinners in the assembly of the righteous." These wise verses predict the fate of the wicked just as Thomas Jefferson feared the judgement of his wayward nation.

    Whoever wished that their nation may escape God's wrath must not only change any evil ways which they may follow, but also strive to right the wrongs of their country.

    #2
    Well first of all, this is very impressive for a first Chreia essay! She's already doing very well. Her sentences are well-written and clear, and she seems to be understanding the intention of the Chreia exercises, which is to use different types of narratives to effectively express the truth of the saying. So, you can definitely encourage her (and be encouraged!) that she's on the right track. This is a very good essay, and there are only a few things I think she needs to tweak for it to be great.

    The Thesis in the first paragraph should not be an exhortation for the audience to think about what will be said, but a declaration of what the writer is going to explore or explain. (So instead of "Therefore, consider..." she could say "Therefore, we/I will consider...")

    The Analogy paragraph should have a very distinct grammatical structure (Just as X leads to Y [a comparable example], so A leads to B [the saying]). Also, this paragraph should just be one sentence: the analogy. The good thing is that she already has all the required parts for a complete analogy here, they just need to be rearranged in the correct structure. So I'd suggest turning that paragraph into something like this: Just as an irresponsible debtor who knows he should return what he owes but avoids repaying his debt (X) will be thrown into debtor's prison (Y), so an unrighteous nation that purposefully sins and does not alter its choices (A) shall surely face God's discipline (B). Once she has written a few of these and feels a bit more comfortable, you can make these analogies even stronger by using parallel or similar wording to bring out the similarities between the two unrelated parts of the analogy. For example, to echo "thrown into debtor's prison," at the end of the analogy she could say something like "will be thrown under God's discipline." (The Analogy paragraph is, I think, the most difficult in Chreia, so really she did a great job for a first try!)

    The story used in the Example paragraph is a great choice, but the source needs to be cited. The goal of this paragraph is use some well-known event or story from history or literature to agree with and reinforce the saying, and so telling where the example comes from lends weight to its effectiveness. It doesn't have to be exact citation, she could just say, "Consider the parable of the unmerciful servant from Matthew." Also, good job here with the last sentence in kind of recapping how the story proves the Chreia.

    Epilogue: Nothing to suggest here, just want to say great job calling the audience to action at the end. That's exactly what this paragraph should do.

    Again, great job for a first essay! I noticed a few Figures of Description and Speech sprinkled in, and they are incorporated very naturally (which is hard to do!). I hope this was helpful! Let know if you have any other questions.

    Comment


      #3
      Dayna, Many thanks! Your feedback is extremely helpful. Having never learned formal rhetoric, I was feeling pretty uncertain about how to constructively evaluate her piece. Thank you again!

      Comment


        #4
        Do we know when the Teacher Manuals will be updated for composition? I’m teaching Chreia for the second time, but I keep seeing things mentioned on the forum that aren’t in the Teacher Manuals (only one sentence for analogies, Heads of Development/Purpose, etc).
        Jennifer
        Blog: [url]www.seekingdelectare.com[/url]

        2021-2022
        DS18: Almost done!
        DS17: MP, MPOA
        DS15: MP, MPOA
        DS12: Mix of SC 5/6 & SC 7/8
        DD11: Mix of 5M and SC7/8
        DD9: SC3
        DD6: MPK

        Comment


          #5
          Jennifer,

          What edition Teacher Manual do you have? If it isn't 2nd edition, email [email protected], and we'll get you a new one.

          Tanya

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by tanya View Post
            Jennifer,

            What edition Teacher Manual do you have? If it isn't 2nd edition, email [email protected], and we'll get you a new one.

            Tanya
            Good grief! I didn’t realize there’s already a second edition! Mine is first edition. I’ll email.
            Jennifer
            Blog: [url]www.seekingdelectare.com[/url]

            2021-2022
            DS18: Almost done!
            DS17: MP, MPOA
            DS15: MP, MPOA
            DS12: Mix of SC 5/6 & SC 7/8
            DD11: Mix of 5M and SC7/8
            DD9: SC3
            DD6: MPK

            Comment

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