The assignment was interesting. Have you ever read the articles in the NGS Quarterly and just gotten lost in the minutiae? I have. I sometimes cannot even see the structure of the article because of the density.
This exercise had us do the following:
- Read just the footnotes
- Read just the article
- Write each sentence on each paragraph summarizing its contents (there were over 90 paragraphs!)
- Write a sentence summarizing the entire article.
This approach forced me to comprehensively read every paragraph and discover the structure. Which was good. The article itself was an interesting use of indirect evidence to provide genealogical proof of a relationship. It certainly was comprehensive. Not too many “rocks were left unturned.”
You might consider using that technique on an article you are having trouble with. I suspect that you will either find that the document required that methodology because of its density or you will find that it’s structure is fundamentally flawed.