Making Music, Making Meaning Assignments | Custom Assignments Help

For this first essay, we will hone our persuasive writing skills by interpreting the message of a song of our selection.

By using the lyrics as evidence, we will learn to weave in texts.

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By understanding that reasonable people interpret art in various ways, we will gain a better understanding of our audience as well as gain respect for those who might disagree with us as we address counter-arguments and concede that there are, of course, other interpretations.

*****Specifics of the Assignment*****
You should have a clever, attention-grabbing hook that has some relationship to the text that you are dealing with. If you have discovered that the intended message of the song is women’s empowerment, then you should start with an introduction that ties into that theme.

Next, offer a brief three to four sentence overview of the basic plot of the song. If the song is not narrative in nature, provide a basic overview of song’s content.

For your thesis, make a clear and direct statement about the meaning of this piece, and then state why it is culturally relevant; next, forecast three (or more reasons why).

Artist’s Song (subject) Strong Verb + Expansion + Forecasting Passage

Sample: Sir Mix-a-Lot’s, “Baby Got Back,” gives us a glimpse into the glorification of plus-size women’s body parts in rap. We see this glorification in the word choices, the allusion to strong females, and the depiction of stereotypes about female body size and rap queens in the piece.

Minimum Three Support Paragraphs
Ever heard of using PIE in paragraph development (Links to an external site.)? The acronym refers to the process of “Point, Illustration, and Explanation,” which you can use to properly address all the details of a particular topic.

Making the Point. Every sentence has a “point,” a particular topic it’s addressing. It need not necessarily be the first thing that your paragraph does, but it has to make its way through at some point (usually, within the third sentence). Also, always keep one of the cardinal guidelines for paragraph development in mind: restrict your paragraph to one point.

Illustrating the Point. The illustration phase is where the writer provides supporting statements that reinforce the point, whether this is achieved through presenting evidence, citing an authoritative source, or other means. Take note of the word “illustrate;” it means demonstrating, rather than simply stating a fact. Use at least two quotes from the song per body paragraph.

Explaining the Point. To seal the deal, you’ll need to explain the relationship between the point and the illustration. Without an explanation, you leave an opening for the reader to misinterpret the information. Adding it in ensures you remain on the same page.

Counter Paragraph
State the main objection(s) to our interpretation or the relevance of the piece.

Sample with “Baby Got Back:” Of course, some might consider the lyrics, and the genre of rap as a whole, to objectify women’s bodies. However… turn back…

Respond to a counter by refuting or conceding.

There are plenty of opportunities to do both here.

A good conclusion to analysis such as this is an assessment of the following questions:

We now know the meaning and relevance of the piece and any potential objections to the interpretation?

What is the additional relevance of this piece, if any.

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Works Cited
Make sure to include a Works Cited that contains the song and any other sources you are using. We never cite from Wikipedia. (We may consult it to find other, reputable sources, but we never use it as a source for our assignment.) If you need help citing sources, use a generator such as, and consult our Library/MLA Resources module.

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