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Argument

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  • 1. Writing in Re s p o ns e , Chapter 5
  • 2. • Academic argument is not the same as the argument you might see in the “real world.”• arguments on Jerry Springer• fights with parents and siblings• most political discussions• – these are not academic arguments.
  • 3. • Instead, academic argument strives to be: • Logical • Reasonable • Respectful (to the opposing viewpoint) • Helpful • Throughfull
  • 4. • #1 -Motive • why does the reader and/or writer care about the argument? • Why was it even written? • What problem or question is being solved? • Can be: • Intellectual • What can Shakespeare’s The Te m p e s t tell us about Elizabethan attitudes toward colonialism? • Practical • How can post-colonial societies combat lingering social issues?
  • 5. • #2 - Claim • Also known as thesis (appears at the end of the introduction) • What is the author trying to prove? What is their perspective? • The claim can be expressed in one sentence: • Widely ridiculed as escape reading, romance novels are important as a proving ground for many never-before-published writers and, more significantly, as a showcase for strong heroines. • Through its contrasting river and shore scenes, Twain’s Huc kle be rry Finn suggests that to find the true expression of American democratic ideals, one must leave “civilized” society and go back to nature. • While both Northerners and Southerners believed they fought against tyranny and oppression, Northerners focused on the oppression of slaves while Southerners defended their own
  • 6. • #3 – Support • How the author backs up or supports the claim • Appears in the body paragraphs of the essay • Should be: • Valid (is it true/believable?) • Relevant (does it relate to your argument?) • May be: • Outside research (statistics, data, etc.) • Personal experience (anecdotes) • Report from authority (doctors, scientists, etc.)
  • 7. • Ways that the writer uses to convince the reader that their argument is correct/worth supporting• Ethos • The reader should believe the writer because they are knowledgeable, likeable, etc. • Accomplished by doing research, writing in a professional manner, etc.• Pathos • The writer uses emotional appeals to reach the reader • Accomplished by telling stories, involving children, puppies, etc.• Logos • The writer uses logic to convince the reader. • Accomplished by using clear, straightforward logic.
  • 8. • When an author writing about the stock market talks about his years working for an investment bank, thats an appeal to credibility.• When a politician writes in a campaign brochure about his years of public service and the contributions hes made to the community, hes letting you know hes trustworthy, a good person, and a credible source of information about the community and the issues that affect it.
  • 9. • Consider an argument about lowering the drinking age from 21 to 18: a writer might suggest that, if the legal drinking age were 18, then people between 18 and 21 would be less likely to drive under the influence. If the writer offers evidence that the reason that some between the ages of 18 and 21 drive drunk is that they fear calling a friend or parent because they have illegally ingested alcohol, then this causal statement would be an appeal to a readers sense of reason.
  • 10. • Should be 1-2 sentences long• Should summarize the entire essay.• Should be something that can be argued • So, not something factual (“Blue is a color”), and not something that cannot be supported (“Blue is the best color”)• Should not be too broad. • “Technology has changed our lives for the better.” • Can you cover all of that is 3-5 pages? No way!• Should not be too narrow. • “Portable MP3 players have made bus rides more enjoyable.” • You could write a paragraph on this, but not an essay.
  • 11. • 1. Media violence is harmful to society. • 2. The death penalty is wrong.• 3. School uniforms provide many benefits to students, parents and educators.• 4. Technology has changed our lives.• 5. Participating in volunteer work is essential to the development of strong character.
  • 12. • 1. Media violence is harmful to society. TOO BROAD • 2. The death penalty is wrong. CAN THIS BE SUPPORTED? IT NEEDS TO BE MORE SPECIFIC.• 3. School uniforms provide many benefits to students, parents and educators. EFFECTIVE• 4. Technology has changed our lives. TOO BROAD• 5. Participating in volunteer work is essential to the development of strong character. EFFECTIVE
  • 13. • Introduction • “hooks’ the reader • Introduces topic/question in an interesting and relevant way • Provides the thesis• Body Paragraphs • Topic sentence (at beginning) states the main idea of each paragraph • Explain, support, describe main ideas• Conclusion • Restatement of thesis • Statement of motive • Conclude essay in meaningful and satisfying manner

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