The Thesis Composition 1 Spring 2010 Based on the reading assignments in Models for Writers, 10th ed., Chapter 3
Don’t make your reader wonder:“Where is the thesis statement?” The thesis lets your readers know what point your are trying to make. Without a thesis, your writing can be confusing and ineffective.
Having a thesis is up to you… …not your reader!!
End reader confusion; haveathesis! Readers expect everything you say in your essay to be logically related to your thesis. When your reader is your instructor, having no thesis means earning a poor grade on your essay! So what?!
What IS a Thesis? The main or controlling idea of an essay The point the writer is trying to make about the topic or issue The most important point you make about your topic. More general than the ideas and facts used to support it Appropriately focused for the length of your paper
Why doesn’t Eveline go with Frank in James Joyce’s short story “Eveline”?
In what way does the very presence of Desiree challenge the assumptions of the society at the time the story “Desiree’s Baby” by Kate Chopin is set?
How can “The Lottery” by Shirley Jackson be seen as a condemnation of a rigid adherence to gender roles?
But don’t stop there!!
A thesis is a statement not a question. Answer the question you or your assignment asks to find your thesis.
Eveline decides not to go with Frank for several reasons that are hinted at during the course of the story.
Because Desiree is a blank slate when she enters the antebellum southern society of the story’s setting, the characters are able to project their biases—both positive and negative—on her.
Shirley Jackson plants several clues in her short story “The Lottery” to point us toward a feminist interpretation including the procedure used in the lottery and eventhe name of the main character.
To make the thesis easier for the reader to understand
To make the thesis easier for the reader to accept
End of introduction example Swiss psychologist, Carl Jung, proposed that “every person is born equipped with a collective unconscious, a set of images including many universal characters” (McMahan, Day, and Funk 1178). In other words, we are all born with a certain amount of shared ideas about the world and people who inhabit it. The ideas that we share are called archetypes , and they often work their way into literary works as a kind of shorthand. “The Lottery” by Shirley Jackson contains the following archetypes: the devil in disguise, the legion of misguided followers, and, of course, the martyr.
Good thesis or not? Directions: narrow the following thesis statements to make them less broad and more workable. Use your book to review the story for ideas. Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery” is a compelling story about scapegoats. The ritual of the lottery itself serves as a symbol in Shirley Jackson’s story. The setting of Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery” is an important element in contributing to the effectiveness of the story. The characters function symbolically in Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery.”
Possible Revisions Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery” presents a compelling indictment of the practice of blaming innocent people for society’s ills. The ritual of the lottery itself serves as a symbol of a society dominated by unexamined tradition. The impact of Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery” depends largely on the contrast between the placid, ordinary setting and the horrifying conclusion. The characters in “The Lottery” symbolize the conflict between tradition and progress.