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RC Annotation Method and BR (Most Authoritarian Rulers Passage pt.1)

bbutlerbbutler Inactive ⭐
edited February 2016 in Reading Comprehension 401 karma
Most Authoritarian Rulers passage:

Hey guys after watching Nicole Hopkins' webinar on RC Methods and Jimmy Quicksilver's webinar on RC Question Types and Tips I thought it would be helpful to start sharing our notes/annotations for each passage because each of us reads a different way and we all see different things. I want to be clear that I’m no expert by any means and this is just the way I personally annotate that is a combination of Nicole Hopkins’s “Toolbox” method and JY’s Memory Method. Also note that I’m doing RC a slightly similar way to Pacifico’s Fool Proof method in that I’m doing the passage 2x one after the other and then once again the following day. While time consuming this definitely is allowing me to read more efficiently for structure and see the similarities in each passage which I know will help me in the long run. This is part one which will just include my annotations for the passage (Most Authoritarian Rulers) and I'll post one that has analysis of the questions immediately afterwards.

I hope this helps you guys and I look forward to seeing what you guys see in each passage!

Notation Breakdown:
Who: Important Nouns
• Box it along with the quantifier
What: Term or phrase that’s defined or has relevant information afterwards
• Box with a tail
When: Date or time
• Circle it
Where: In what context
• Put brackets around it
Pivots: Switching between viewpoints
• Marked with >
• Also may help if you distinguish which opinions each are
Questions: Questions someone raised that could be answered in the passage
• Mark with a Q or a ? In the margins

Time Breakdown of reading/annotating before going to the questions
• 4:05

Paragraph 1:
I boxed with tail “Most authoritarian rulers” who undertook democratic reforms (The quantifier “most” was important because an answer choice could have said “all authoritarian rulers and would have been out of the scope of the stimulus”)

Underlined “they” for referential phrasing

I put a pivot after the “but” to show that annotate that the real reason why the author believes that many authoritarian rulers undertake democratic reform is because they see that they can’t hold onto their power unless they do so

Boxed changes and mobilizations because I anticipated that was where the passage was going from here

What is the function of this paragraph:
This paragraph is introducing the author’s main point: “Due to the various changes and mobilizations in civil society it makes it impossible for authoritarian rulers to hold onto their power indefinitely so they undertake democratic reform.”

Where do we think the passage is heading from here?
Well the first paragraph mentions “changes and mobilizations but we don’t exactly know what exactly they’re referring to so that might be an indicator of where we’re heading from here

Paragraph 2:

Immediately Box “Three types of changes” because this lets you know that more than likely the author is going to talk about what the 3 changes are.
• Also note that these “Changes” are the changes and mobilizations in civil society that we annotated earlier

Box with a tail “values and norms in the society alter over time” until the end of that sentence. I wanted to box this with a tail because I wanted to get the first type of change along with showing how it changed civil society.
• Also I put a 1 in the margin so that I could quickly see where the values were when I needed to refer back to the passage

In the next sentence I put a bracket along with “Ex” in the margins so that if it asked about that specific example I could find it
• Also I circled 1970’s and 1980’s so if they had other dates as an answer choice I could quickly eliminate it

I underlined the last sentence in the paragraph because it shows another way that the changing of values and norms in society impact an authoritarian rulers’ power

What is the purpose of this paragraph:
This paragraph gives us the first type of changes in civil society that make it impossible for rulers to hold onto their power
• A change in norms and values

How does the change in norms and values contribute?
• Reduces people’s tolerance and stimulates concentration of power thus stimulating their demands for freedom (11-13)
• As people place more value on political freedom and civil liberties they become more inclined to speak out, protest, and organize for democracy, frequently beginning with the denunciation of human rights abuses (17-22)

Do you have an example of either of these points:
• Latin America in the 1970’s, 1980’s (13-17)

Where are we going from here:
We talked about the first value that contributes to society’s no longer condoning the continuation of authoritarian rule so my anticipation would be that the next paragraph would talk about the second change

Paragraph 3:

Box alignment of economic interests in society can shift: This is the second change the author gives

Box scholar: Let’s us know who is saying this

Box with tail and brackets from privileged people to long-term interests:
• We want to box privileged people so we know who we’re talking about and you want to make sure that you read with and without the internal context of who the privileged people were
• All of this is important information because it gives us a way how the economic interests shifting could impact the regime

Box “such a large-scale shift”: This is just so you can remember what type of shift we’re talking about the shifting of changing norms and values

Bracketed and put “Ex” in the margin for the Philippines example, for the exact same reason we did the Latin America example, if we’re asked about it we can easily find it

What is the purpose of this paragraph:
This paragraph gives us the second change that can contribute to a society no longer condoning the continuation of authoritarian rule
• Economic interests in a society can shift

How do the shifting of economic interests in a society contribute to the author’s main point
• A turning point is created when privileged people in society come to the conclusion that the authoritarian regime is dispensable and that its continuation might damage their long-term interests.
• (26-31)

Is there an example of this:
• Transition to democracy in the Philippines

Paragraph 4:

Box “expanding resources, autonomy, and self-confidence of various segments of society and of newly formed organizations both formal and informal”
• This is showing the 3rd and final change that contributes to the author’s main point

Bracket the next 2 sentences and put Ex in the margins
• This gives you visually a clearer point to see two examples of this change

Box this profound development: Referential phrasing to the example above

What is the purpose of this paragraph:
This paragraph gives us the 3rd change that contributes to the shifting from authoritarian society to a democracy
• Expanding resources, autonomy, and self-confidence of various segments of society and of newly formed organizations both formal and informal

Are there any examples of this:
• Students marching in the streets demanding change
• Workers paralyze key industries
• Lawyers refuse to cooperate any longer
• Alternative sources of information pierce and shatter the veil of secrecy

Paragraph 5:

Box “authoritarian rule tends in the long run to generate all 3 types of change
• This helps us understand that we have to deal with all of these problems not just 1 or 2

Box with tail “Ironically” until the end of that sentence: Could be asked about the author’s attitude towards this situation and this gives a glimpse into their tone

Bracket the last sentence of the passage
• Gives lasting thoughts to what the author believes (If you don’t convert to a democratic society then you won’t be able to retain any of your power)

What is the purpose of this paragraph:
This paragraph brings together all of the ideas and hints at the authors tone throughout the passage along with his thoughts moving forward regarding this issue

Overall Analysis:

This passage is pretty straight forward it introduces the issue (Authoritarian rulers are unable hold on to their power indefinitely unless the switch to a democratic society), then uses the following 3 paragraphs to go into detail about each change that contributes to this issue, then the author brings everything together and leaves you with his lasting thought.
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