Adopted with permission from Ruthie Gilmore’s Reading Guidelines

  1. What is the setting of the work? Consider both the “external” and the “internal” dimensions of “setting”:
    • “external”:
      1. What are the conditions under which the work was produced?
      2. Why – for what use – was the work produced?
      3. What’s different now, if anything?
    •  “internal”:
      1. Where does the work sit in a body or bodies of knowledge?
      2. Where or what in time-space is the study’s object?
  2. Who is the announced and/or implied audience for the work?
  3. What are the work’s structure and style?
  4. What is/are the work’s key question(s)?
  5. What is the work’s spatial scale and scope?
  6. What theory serves as the writer’s guide to action?
  7. What method(s) does the writer use?
  8. What evidence does the writer use?
  9. What are the arguments? In other words, how does the writer use the theory, method, and evidence to propose answers (or make claims)?
  10. What is the role of the state, and how is that (set of) institution(s) defined?
  11. What is the relationship between the work and the concept of “Asian America(n)”?
  12. What works for you?