When a verbal passage asks you about the author's intention..

<p>When a verbal passage asks you about the author's intention in a specific line, what do you do? Do you consider only the context near THAT specific line or do you consider the passage as a whole?</p>

<p>Let me give you an easy example, (it's something I made up, not a real passage)</p>

<p>A passage talks about how BAD dogs are. and the first paragraph in line 5 says "Dogs are very good creatures," and nowhere in the same paragraph talks about how bad dogs are. However, almost everywhere else in the passage is criticizing dogs. </p>

<p>And the question asks, "Refer to line 5, what is author's opinion on dogs?"</p>

<p>So what do you do? Do you say that the author is praising the dogs, or do you say that the author is sarcastic? If you only look at that line or that paragraph, obviously the author is praising dogs. However, if you take the rest of the passage into consideration, the first paragraph is certainly sarcastic.</p>

<p>Haha.. I don't think you'll ever see a question like that. Usually the "author's opinion" questions are pretty straightforward, not really ambiguous, or anything to argue about. I just look at the line they refer to and lines around it.</p>

<p>oh.really? i ran into a dilemma with this problem..</p>