Which of the lens text’s main arguments could be applied to the target text?
**Please use only 1 outside source from the database I provided and the text I uploaded “I don’t feel like buying stuff”**
The initial lockdowns of the COVID-19 pandemic prompted writer Anne Helen Petersen to reflect on her spending habits and her dwindling desire to shop during the height of the pandemic, which she documented in her essay “I Don’t Feel Like Buying Stuff Anymore.” Petersen’s reflection of her personal spending habits leads to an observation and examination of consumerism in the United States and how it became ingrained in American identity. Locate a source in the Gale Opposing Viewpoints database, a database that collects from various academic and periodical publications and organizes them according to their main issue or topic. Locate a “Viewpoint” source in the Consumerism topic cluster that takes a position or makes an argument that connects to Petersen’s essay in some way. Apply Petersen’s essay as a lens in order to analyze your selected source, and create an argument of your own on the issue of consumerism and how it shapes/is shaped by American identity.
* What does it mean to apply a reading as a “lens”?
When we look through a lens it shapes how we see things- think about tinted lenses or sunglasses, or even prescription lenses that bring things into focus for you.
To apply a reading or text as a lens means to identify central ideas or concepts in the first (“lens”) text, and then applying them to another (“target”) text in order to look at this text through the perspective of the first.
To do this, you must first really understand the lens text: What is the author’s main concern? What are the central ideas?
Next, you must understand the target text: What is its purpose and main concern? What are the central ideas or claims?
Where do you see general points of agreement or disagreement between the two texts? Which of the lens text’s main arguments could be applied to the target text? What does the lens text illuminate/help you understand in the target text?
What are the limits to this application? Are there places in the target text where the lens text doesn’t apply? How does the target text help you understand how an argument or concept from the lens text applies (or doesn’t apply) to other circumstances?
Note: this is not the same as compare/contrast. The goal is not to simply figure out what’s similar and different between the two texts; rather, your goal is to understand the argument and core concepts of the lens text better by applying them to the target text, including the affordances and limitations of these ideas.
Your thesis statement will make an argument about an idea or concept from the assigned reading (Petersen) based on your application of it to your selected outside source. (For example, American citizens’ relationship to consumerism or the concept of consumerism as patriotic). In the body of your essay, you will develop your argument with supporting claims and evidence from the assigned reading and your outside source.
Note: applying a reading as a lens does not mean you have to fully agree with the reading; in fact, you will have more luck in creating your own nuanced argument if you find wiggle room or disagreement within a position you mostly agree with (or, alternatively, find wiggle room or agreement with a position you mostly oppose). The goal is to find core concepts from the reading and apply them to another text in order to discover something further about this topbciic and make your own argument.