But Alex’s professor doesn’t like it. She underlines the very first two sentences, and she writes, “This is just too general. Arrive at the true point.” She underlines the next and sentences that are fourth and she writes, eliteessaywriters.com reddit “You’re just restating the question I asked. What’s your point?” She underlines the final sentence, after which writes when you look at the margin, “What’s your thesis?” because the past sentence into the paragraph only lists topics. It does not make a disagreement.
Is Alex’s professor just a grouch? Well, no—she is trying to instruct this student that college writing isn’t about following a formula (the model that is five-paragraph, it is about making a quarrel. Her first sentence is general, the way she learned a essay that is five-paragraph start. But through the professor’s perspective, it’s way too general—so general, in fact, that it’s completely outside of the assignment: she didn’t ask students to define civil war. The third and fourth sentences say, in a lot of words, “I am comparing and contrasting reasons why the North therefore the South fought the Civil War”—as the professor says, they just restate the prompt, without giving just one hint about where this student’s paper is going. The sentence that is final that ought to make a quarrel, only lists topics; it does not commence to explore how or why something happened.
If you’ve seen a lot of five-paragraph essays, you are able to guess what Alex will write next. Her first body paragraph will begin, “We is able to see a few of the different main reasons why the North and South fought the Civil War by studying the economy.” What will the professor say about this? She may ask, “What differences can we come across? What part of the economy have you been speaking about? Why do the distinctions exist? Why are they important?” After three such body paragraphs, the student might write a conclusion that says much exactly the same thing as her introduction, in slightly different words. Alex’s professor might already respond, “You’ve said this!”
What could Alex do differently? Let’s start over. This time around, Alex doesn’t start with a notion that is preconceived of to organize her essay. Rather than three “points,” she decides that she’s going to brainstorm until she pops up with a principal argument, or thesis, that answers the question “Why did the North and South fight the Civil War?” Then she’s going to decide how to organize her draft by taking into consideration the argument’s parts and how they can fit together.
After doing a bit of brainstorming and reading the Writing Center’s handout on thesis statements, Alex thinks of a argument that is main or thesis statement:
- Both Northerners and Southerners believed they fought against tyranny and oppression, but Northerners dedicated to the oppression of slaves while Southerners defended their rights to property and self-government.
Then Alex writes her introduction. But rather of starting with a statement that is general civil wars, she gives us the ideas we have to know so that you can understand all of the elements of her argument:
- The United States broke away from England in response to British tyranny and oppression, so opposition to tyranny and a belief in individual freedom and liberty were important values into the young republic. But in the century that is nineteenth slavery made Northerners and Southerners see these values in completely different ways. By 1860, the conflict during these values broke out into a war that is civil nearly tore the united states apart. Both Northerners and Southerners believed they fought against tyranny and oppression, but Northerners focused on the oppression of slaves while Southerners defended their rights to property and self-government in that war.
Every sentence in Alex’s introduction that is new the reader down the road to her thesis statement in an unbroken chain of ideas.
Now Alex turns to organization. You’ll find more about the thinking process she passes through inside our handout on organization, but here are the basics: first, she decides, she’ll write a paragraph that gives background; she’ll explain how opposition to tyranny and a belief in individual liberty came to be such values that are important the usa. Then she’ll write another background paragraph for which she shows how the conflict over slavery developed in the long run. Then she’ll have separate paragraphs about Northerners and Southerners, explaining in detail—and evidence that is giving claims about each group’s cause of likely to war.
Keep in mind that Alex now has four body paragraphs. She might have had three or two or seven; what’s important is that she allowed her argument to tell her just how many paragraphs she need to have and just how to fit them together. Furthermore, her body paragraphs don’t all“points that are discuss” like “the economy” and “politics”—two of them give background, additionally the other two explain Northerners’ and Southerners’ views at length.
Finally, having followed her sketch outline and written her paper, Alex turns to writing a conclusion. From our handout on conclusions, she knows that a “that’s my story and I’m sticking to it” conclusion does not move her ideas forward. Using the strategies she finds in the handout, she decides that she can use her conclusion to describe why the paper she’s just written really matters—perhaps by pointing out that the fissures inside our society that the Civil War opened are, quite often, still causing trouble today.
Will it be ever OK to write a five-paragraph essay?
Yes. Have you ever found yourself in times where somebody expects you to definitely sound right of a body that is large of at that moment and write a well-organized, persuasive essay—in fifty minutes or less? Seems like an essay exam situation, right? When time is short and also the pressure is on, falling back regarding the good old fashioned essay that is five-paragraph help you save time and provide you with confidence. A five-paragraph essay may also work as the framework for a speech that is short. Do not end up in the trap, however, of creating a” that is“listing statement when your instructor expects an argument; when planning your body paragraphs, think of three aspects of an argument, in place of three “points” to discuss. On the other hand, most professors recognize the constraints of writing blue-book essays, and a “listing” thesis is probably a lot better than no thesis after all.
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