The initial step in critical research is to read the argument of the author carefully and thoroughly. Much of the data would come from reading numerous sources and knowing various viewpoints and perspectives on the same subject. You need to pay attention to specifics, to identify the rhetorical techniques, perceptions, and expectations of the speaker.
Whenever a source is read, always watch out for:
- The expected audience of the writer. Good authors write to appeal to a certain audience in a particular manner; ex. Playful language appeals to girls, business people refer to figures.
The means of argument (language and rhetoric) of the book. Good writers will not explicitly claim that Burger King isunhealthy, they will show the sick list of ingredients from BK and let this inference be made by the reader.
- The basic framework of the writing and how the assertions of the author are supported by it. A blog post on the meaning of punctuation, such as commas, can explain how, irritatingly, misuse, commas, only, like, this, many people.
It is your duty as a sensitive reader to recognize the intentions of the speaker and dissect the text for context. The entire point of critical reading is to learn how the author seeks to accomplish his goals and win your interest.