The Compact Reader: Short Essays by Method and Theme

by ;
  • ISBN13:


  • ISBN10:


  • Edition: 9th
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2010-11-26
  • Publisher: Bedford/St. Martin's
  • View Upgraded Edition

Note: Supplemental materials are not guaranteed with Rental or Used book purchases.

Purchase Benefits

  • Free Shipping On Orders Over $35!
    Your order must be $35 or more to qualify for free economy shipping. Bulk sales, PO's, Marketplace items, eBooks and apparel do not qualify for this offer.
  • Get Rewarded for Ordering Your Textbooks! Enroll Now
List Price: $56.52 Save up to $43.63
  • Rent Book $12.89
    Add to Cart Free Shipping


Supplemental Materials

What is included with this book?

  • The New copy of this book will include any supplemental materials advertised. Please check the title of the book to determine if it should include any access cards, study guides, lab manuals, CDs, etc.
  • The Used and Rental copies of this book are not guaranteed to include any supplemental materials. Typically, only the book itself is included. This is true even if the title states it includes any access cards, study guides, lab manuals, CDs, etc.


From its well-chosen essays to its thorough editorial apparatus to its distinctive organization,TheCompact Readerprovides the fundamental support students need to become confident writers. The innovative dual organization -- rhetorical and thematic -- introduces essential strategies of writing while engaging students with brief readings on captivating topics. For instructors who want a concise, affordable, effective resource for teaching the connection between form and content,The CompactReaderis the perfect choice.

Author Biography

JANE E. AARON is a professional writer and editor as well as an experienced teacher. She is the author of the Little, Brown Handbook and co-editor of the best-selling Bedford Reader (Bedford/St. Martin's). She has served as consultant, editor, or writer on more than a dozen other textbooks for the first-year composition course.
ELLEN KUHL REPETTO (M.A., University of Massachusetts Boston) is a freelance editor and writer who has contributed to more than twenty composition readers, handbooks, and rhetorics. She is the author of The Bedford/St. Martin's Textbook Reader (2003), Readings for Discoveries: A Collection of Short Essays (2006), and Hope over Hardship: A History of the Boston Home, 1881 - 2006 (2007).


Table of Contents

Reading Attentively
Reading Critically
     *Examining Visuals
     *Colin Gregory Palmer, Homeless (photograph)
Analyzing a Sample Essay
     Barbara Lazear Ascher, The Box Man
Getting Started
Forming a Thesis
     Grace Patterson, First Draft (student essay)
Reading Your Own Work Critically
Looking at the Whole Draft
Using a Revision Checklis
     Grace Patterson, Revised Draft (student essay)
Making Sentences Clear and Effective
Choosing Clear and Effective Words
     Grace Patterson, A Rock and a Hard Place
          *Brant Ward, Shelter (photograph)

5 NARRATION: Recalling Childhood
Reading Narration
Analyzing Narration in Paragraphs
     Michael Ondaatje, from Running in the Family
     *Donald Hall, from Unpacking the Boxes
Developing a Narrative Essay
A Note on Thematic Connections
     Annie Dillard, The Chase
     Langston Hughes, Salvation
     Kaela Hobby-Reichstein, Learning Race (student essay)
Writing with the Method
Writing About the Theme
6  DESCRIPTION: *Experiencing New Places
Reading Description
Analyzing Description in Paragraphs
     *Helene Cooper, from The House at Sugar Beach
     *Matthew Power, from “The Magic Mountain”
Developing a Descriptive Essay
A Note on Thematic Connections
     Marta K. Taylor, Desert Dance (student essay)
     *Amanda Fields, Cairo Tunnel
     *William Least Heat-Moon, Starrucca Viaduct
Writing with the Method
Writing About the Theme
7  EXAMPLE: Using Language
Reading Examples
Analyzing Examples in Paragraphs
     Deborah Tannen, from Talking from 9 to 5
     William Lutz, from Doublespeak
Developing an Essay by Example
A Note on Thematic Connections
     Kim Kessler, Blah Blah Blah (student essay)
     *Anita Jain, A Nameless Respect 
     Perri Klass, She's Your Basic L.O.L. in N.A.D.
Writing with the Method
Writing About the Theme
8 DIVISION OR ANALYSIS: Looking at Popular Culture
Reading Division or Analysis
Analyzing Division or Analysis in Paragraphs
     Jon Pareles, from “Gather No Moss, Take No Prisoners, but Be Cool”
     Luci Tapahanso, from Sign Language
Developing an Essay by Division or Analysis
A Note on Thematic Connections
     Dave Barry, Humvee Satisfies a Man's Lust for Winches 
     *Andrew Warren III, Paying Off the Interest: The Success of Merchandise and Consumer Sentiment (student essay)
     Thomas de Zengotita, American Idol Worship 
Writing with the Method
Writing About the Theme
9 CLASSIFICATION: *Sorting Friends and Neighbors
Reading Classification
Analyzing Classification in Paragraphs
     *Nelson George, from “Strangers on His Street”
     *Kevin Roose, from The Unlikely Disciple: A Sinner's Semester at America's Holiest University
Developing an Essay by Classification
A Note on Thematic Connections
     *Brandon Griggs, The 12 Most Annoying Types of Facebookers
     Jonathan R. Gould, The People Next Door (student essay)
     Marion Winik, What Are Friends For?
Writing with the Method
Writing About the Theme
Reading Process Analysis
Analyzing Processes in Paragraphs
     *L. Rust Hill, from “How to Eat an Ice Cream Cone”
     Jane E. Brody, from Jane Brody's Nutrition Book
Developing an Essay by Process Analysis
A Note on Thematic Connections
     *Glenn Erikson, How to Survive at Chuck E. Cheese (student essay)
     *Lars Eighner, Dumpster Diving
     *Barbara Kingsolver, Stalking the Vegetannual
Writing with the Method
Writing About the Theme

11 COMPARISON AND CONTRAST: Evaluating Stereotypes
Reading Comparison and Contrast
Analyzing Comparison and Contrast in Paragraphs
     Michael Dorris, from “Noble Savages? We'll Drink to That”
     Julia Álvarez, from “A White Woman of Color”
Developing an Essay by Comparison and Contrast
A Note on Thematic Connections
     Leanita McClain, The Middle-Class Black's Burden
     Cheryl Peck, Fatso
     Alaina Wong, China Doll (student essay)
Writing with the Method
Writing About the Theme
12 DEFINITION: Clarifying Family Relationships
Reading Definition
Analyzing Definition in Paragraphs
     Firoozeh Dumas, from Funny in Farsi
     *Sandra Cisneros, from “Only Daughter”
Developing an Essay by Definition
A Note on Thematic Connections
     *Ashley Rhodes, Fatherhood Is Essential (student essay)
     Judy Brady, I Want a Wife
     Andrew Sullivan, The “M-Word”: Why It Matters to Me
Writing with the Method
Writing About the Theme
13 CAUSE-AND-EFFECT ANALYSIS: Understanding Markets and Consumers
Reading Cause-and-Effect Analysis
Analyzing Causes and Effects in Paragraphs
     Barbara Ehrenreich, from Nickle and Dimed
     *Pico Iyer, from “The Joy of Less”
Developing an Essay by Cause-and-Effect Analysis
A Note on Thematic Connections
     Stephanie Alaimo and Mark Koester, The Backdraft of Technology (student essay)
     *Dana Thomas, The Fake Trade
     *Charlie Le Duff, End of the Line
Writing with the Method
Writing About the Theme
14 ARGUMENT AND PERSUASION: Debating Law and Order
Reading Argument and Persuasion
Analyzing Argument and Persuasion in Paragraphs
     *Jenny Price, from “Gun Violence at UC Irvine”
     Martin Luther King Jr., from “Letter from Birmingham Jail”
Developing an Argumentative and Persuasive Essay
A Note on Thematic Connections
     Anna Quindlen, The C Word In the Hallways
     *Linda Chavez, Redefining the Problem Won't Make It Go Away 
     *Charlie Spence, Sixteen (student essay)
     ] Ira Glasser, Drug Busts = Jim Crow
     ] James R. McDonough, Critics Scapegoat the Antidrug Laws
Writing with the Method
Writing About the Theme
Writing about Readings
Using Research to Support a Thesis
Synthesizing Source Material
Avoiding Plagiarism
Documenting Sources in MLA Style
Sample Documented Essay
     Tae Andrews, Urban Neanderthals: The Damaging Effects of Media Stereotypes on Young African American Males (student essay)

Rewards Program

Write a Review