The art of summarizing
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Summarization involves careful presentation of other people’s views, ideas, opinions or findings in your own words orally or in written form. In order not to lose the meaning or distort the original meaning of information during summarization, its critical to keep in mind what others say and then say it in your own words.
In the prowess of summarizes and summarization the phrase, “They say, I say” becomes a central focus simply because others will say first then present what “they” said in summary or paraphrase form.
In a public conference, it is crucial to represent others opinion first before giving your own opinion on a particular topic to attract the attention of your listeners, as well as avoiding keeping the audience in suspense. Although many presenters or writers may fail to focus on the original meaning of the content summarized, it is of paramount importance to give justice and acknowledge the original sources.
In making excellent summaries, one ought to posses several skills and abilities, which help to bring out the indented meaning from a content of words, received orally or by writing. According to Elbow, any one making a cogent summary ought’s to position himself or herself in the place of the original author or the main speaker and play a believing game even though he or she does not agree with the views of the original author or speaker (22).
As a result, this ability ensures that the audience or readers of the summary do not easily determine whether the person doing the summary and the original author agree or not. It is a powerful tool to reduce biasness in summarization as one holds his or her convictions, believes and opinions and sticks to what the author says.
Striking this balance in summarization upholds credibility of the summary produced gives honor to the original author of the piece of art being summarized, as one would quote points and statements he or she might not be interested. For instance Zinczenko views that the fast foods industries are a health hazard for they make people fat.
In his own opinion, he incriminates these industries, but in his summary, he does not present his own opinion. Instead, Zinczenko does not suggest that the fast foods industries had any evil intention (153-155). In this case, Zinczenko plays believing game well and thus the credibility of his summary.
On the other hand, it is vital to know where you are going in summarization. In a presentation, the illustration of the original work and repeated quotation of what “they said” keeps the audience out of confusion throughout the presentation. Although if one sticks on what others say, he or she may end up on list summary in which quotations like, “the author says…” “In addition, he says…” “Also he shows…” Nevertheless, the skill of having a focus and knowing where you are going saves the trouble of list summary.
Good summary, therefore, would portray clearly the views of the original author in the contest summarized. To attain this, the Elbows perception of playing the believing game well helps to achieve the indented goal and giving the source justice. Misrepresentation of the source or ignorance to play Elbows game of believing well leads to biased summary, which lacks credibility and denies justice to the source.
Elbow, Peter. Dialogue on writting. New York: Simon and Schuster, 2001.
Zinczenko, David. “Eat this Not that! For kids!” Be the leanest, fittest family on the Block. 3.2(2003): 153-155. Print.