CM - stevensbhhs

Report
How to Write
an Effective
Response to
Literature
Essay
Jane Schaffer Writing Program
Writing Process Steps
1. Pre-Writing
2. Shaping the Essay
A. Intro paragraphs
B.
Body paragraphs
C.
Conclusion paragraphs
3. First Draft
4. Peer Response
5. Revision
6. Final Draft
Writing Process Steps
Pre-Write
Pre-writing – the process of getting
Concrete Details (facts)on paper
before organizing paragraphs.
Prewriting - Bubble Clusters
BBQ
Time with
Siblings
Family
Vacation
SUMMER
TIME
Stay up
Late
Daily
Routine
Movies
Pleasure
Reading
Prewriting - SPIDER Clusters
Time with
Siblings
Stay up Late
and sleep in
BBQ
SUMMER
Family
Vacation
Daily
Routine
TIME
Pleasure
Reading
Movies
Prewriting - Outline
Getting A Computer
I. Picking One Out
A. Comparison Shopping
B. Talking to Sales persons
II. Setting it Up
A. Tried to Read the Manual
B. Friend came into Teach
Prewriting - Columns
TWO CHARACTERS
ALIKE
DIFFERENT
1.
1.
2.
2.
3.
3.
Prewriting - Columns
BEING FAMOUS
ADVANTAGES
DISADVANTAGES
1.
1.
2.
2.
3.
3.
Writing Process Steps
Shaping Your Essay
Body Paragraphs
Get Ready to Color Your World!
• Materials: When we write, we will use
blue, red, and green pens.
–BLUE is for Topic Sentences (TS)
and Concluding Sentences (CS).
–RED is for Concrete Details (CD).
–GREEN is for Commentary Sentences
(CM).
Shaping the Essay- terms to know
One-Chunk Body Paragraph
• Sent. #1 -Topic Sentence – TS
• Sent. #2 – CD –starts with “For example”
• Sent. #3 – CM - (This shows that…)
• Sent. #4 – CM – (It also indicates…; This is
because…; This is important because…)
• Sent, #5 – Concluding Sentence – CS – Sums it
up and ties back to the thesis (As a result,…)
Shaping the Essay- Paragraph
A Topic Sentence
• TS = first sentence of the paragraph.
•It shows the main idea.
•Usually a mildly controversial statement.
•something that you have to prove.
•Also called an assertion
•It can be as brief as 3 words!
TS Example
In the fairy tale “Cinderella,” the main
character feels mistreated.
• Bad: In the fairy tale
“Cinderella”, the main
Character has to clean
The house instead of
Going to the ball.
Shaping the Essay- Paragraph
• Concrete Detail (CD)
– This is the stuff from the literature
– it’s the evidence – the WHAT for your commentary!
– Novel References
• facts, examples from story (what happened), support
– Include citations (with page numbers)
– Quotes / paraphrasing – both are okay
• Quotes can do double duty: CD or CM
– Use quotes when something special about the lines.
– Use the 4-step quote method
CDs can’t be argued with—a CD is evidence that supports
your point!
CD Example
• For example, Cinderella must do all of the
cooking and cleaning for her family.
Insert quote
4-step quote methods for One Chunk
1. I’ll Show Everyone the Truth method
•
•
•
•
Introduce the quote.
State the quote.
Explain the quote.
Tie your quote to your main point.
2. TIQA method
•
•
•
•
T = Topic sentence
I = Introduce quote: put the quote into context.
Q = Quote: provide your MLA quote
A = Analyze x 2: explain to the reader the importance of
the quote and how it supports your topic sentence.
Shaping the Essay- Paragraph
• Commentary – (CM)
– This is the stuff from inside your head!
– This is the answer to “so what?”
– Your words and explanations.
– May be referred to as:
analysis; interpreting; opinion; inference;
insight; reasons; commentary, elaboration
Example Commentary Sentences
(2 CMs)
Insert quote
• These chores keep her isolated and friendless.
The stepmother is thus able to give Cinderella
even more work, which prevents her from
going to the ball.
Shaping the Essay- Paragraph
CONCLUDING SENTENCE
A CS wraps up the paragraph.
 It rephrases the main idea.
Example Concluding Sentence (CS)
Therefore, Cinderella feels abused by the very
people who are supposed to love her.
TS, CD, CM, CS—Now What?
• CHUNKING
• A combination of CDs and CMs
is called a “chunk.”
• In English, we will mostly use a
combination (or “ratio”) of 1:2.
• That is, for every 1 CD, you will have
2 CMs.
•“Two Fer”
One Chunk: 1 CD + 2 CM
For example, Cinderella must do all
of the cooking and cleaning for her
family (CD). These chores keep her
isolated and friendless(CM). The
stepmother is thus able to give
Cinderella even more work, which
prevents her from going to the
ball(CM).
Ratio = 1:2
Shaping the Essay- Chunk
These are transitions
One-Chunk Body Paragraph
• Sent. #1 -Topic Sentence – TS
• Sent. #2 – CD –starts with “For example”
• Sent. #3 – CM - (This shows that…)
• Sent. #4 – CM – (It also indicates…; This is
because…; This is important because…)
• Sent, #5 – Circle Sentence – CS – Sums it up
and ties back to the thesis (As a result,…)
A Whole Paragraph
TS
CM
X
2
In the fairy tale “Cinderella,” the main
character feels mistreated. For example,
CD
Cinderella must do all of the cooking and
cleaning for her family. These chores keep
her isolated and friendless. The stepmother
is thus able to give Cinderella even more
work, which prevents her from going to the
ball. Therefore, Cinderella feels abused by
the very people who are supposed to love
her.
CS
A Visual
A Topic Sentence (TS) is the top bun of a hamburger.
Concrete Details (CD) are the meat of the hamburger.
Commentary Sentences (CM) are the “extras” on
the hamburger—the tomato, cheese, lettuce,
mayo—they make it delicious!
A concluding sentence (CS) is the bottom bun of the
hamburger.
Shaping the Essay- terms to know
• Chunk

– 1 CD and its accompanying CMs x two
Two for One Ratio
– Ratio of CD:CM in a body paragraph should be at
least 1: 2+
• Flexible order of CDs and CMs:
– cm, cd, cm, cm
– cd, cm, cm
– cm, cm, cd, cm
Work on this later
Shaping the Essay- Your Turn
• Turn your paper over and read the 1 chunk paragraph
on The Three Little Pigs
– Example # 2
• Using your colors, underline/highlight each element of
the paragraph
• Identify (write)each element of the chunk paragraph
like we did with Cinderella
• Circle the transitions
The Three Little Pigs
In the fairy tale “The Three Little Pigs,”
the third pig is very wise(TS). For example,
remembering his mother’s warning about a
wolf, he builds his house out of sturdy
brick(CD). The wolf is unable to blow down
the brick house(CM). This shows that the
third pig is smarter than his brothers, who
were both eaten by the wolf(CM). In
conclusion, the third pig outsmarts not only
his brothers but the “big, bad” wolf as
well(CS).
Blowing Chunks
Chunk Quiz
1. Using your colors, underline/highlight each
element of the paragraph
2. Identify and label the elements of the
paragraph like we did with Cinderella and 3
Pigs
Shaping the Essay-QUIZ
• In Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, Harry is
a champion to many of the more insecure
students at Hogwarts. For example, when Malfoy
takes Neville’s Rememberall, Harry gets on a
broom and gets it back. He simply cannot stand
someone who picks on others. Because of this,
Harry becomes a hero to those less fortunate. In
other words, he has found a place where he
belongs, and he becomes determined to protect
the vulnerable people he has grown fond of.
Shaping the Essay-QUIZ
• In Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, Harry is
a champion to many of the more insecure
students at Hogwarts(TS). For example, when
Malfoy takes Neville’s Rememberall, Harry gets
on a broom and gets it back(CD). He simply
cannot stand someone who picks on others(CM).
Because of this, Harry becomes a hero to those
less fortunate(CM). In other words, he has found
a place where he belongs, and he becomes
determined to protect the vulnerable people he
has grown fond of(CS).
TS
• In Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, Harry is a champion to
many of the more insecure students at Hogwarts.
• Could someone logically argue against it?
– Yes
– Harry is a wimp; he should take power
– People are jealous of him
• Find any CMs?
– Champion
– Insecure
• Is this a fact from the story?
– No, but I can support it with facts.
CD
• CD: For example, when Malfoy takes Neville’s
Rememberall, Harry gets it back.
– Action/fact from the story
– It’s a plot reference (something that happened in
the story)
– It’s from the surface. I didn’t have to dig deep and
be a rocket scientist to find this out. It’s straight
out of the book.
CM
(This shows that…)
He cannot stand someone who picks on others.
– Has commentary words (cannot stand; picks on
others)
– It’s your interpretation of what the action means or
shows about a particular character
He wants to protect the vulnerable.
–
–
Commentary words (protect, vulnerable)
More interpretation of what the action of getting
back Neville’s Rememberall means/shows
Blowing Chunks Quiz # 1 Retake
• “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock”
• Directions: color code and label each element
of the sentences according to the Chunk
paragraph format.
– Abbreviations
Blowing Chunks Quiz # 1 Retake
• In the poem “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock,” the main
character feels self-conscious in a world that seems to
move too fast for him. At the beginning of the poem,
Prufrock invites the reader to follow along with him, but
twice during his introduction of his topic, he is interrupted
by women who “come and go/ Talking of Michaelangelo”
(658-9). These anonymous women interrupt Prufrock,
distracting him from his point, even though what they are
discussing has no relationship to what he is attempting to
say. They pass him by, while he attempts to reorganize his
thoughts by changing the subject, and thus continually
playing catch-up to the world around him. Prufrock’s
inability to fully communicate his ideas makes him feel
isolated and ineffective in a world that seems disconnected
from him.
Blowing Chunks Quiz # 1 Retake
• In the poem “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock,” the
main character feels self-conscious in a world that seems
to move too fast for him(TS). At the beginning of the
poem, Prufrock invites the reader to follow along with
him, but twice during his introduction of his topic, he is
interrupted by women who “come and go/ Talking of
Michaelangelo” (658-9)(CD). These anonymous women
interrupt Prufrock, distracting him from his point, even
though what they are discussing has no relationship to
what he is attempting to say(CM). They pass him by,
while he attempts to reorganize his thoughts by changing
the subject, and thus continually playing catch-up to the
world around him(CM). Prufrock’s inability to fully
communicate his ideas makes him feel isolated and
ineffective in a world that seems disconnected from
him(CS).
Shaping the Essay- Your Turn
• One chunk is fine for 5th grade – we are in high school
• One sentence per grade level
– 9th grade = 9 -11 sentence paragraphs
• More complex points need more support.
• Topic Sentence still at the beginning and a Concluding
Sentence still at the end.
• Includes two chunks with a segue or transition between
them that connect the chunks.
– TS + (cd, cm, cm) + S + (cm, cd, cm) + CS
Shaping the Essay- Your Turn
• Now read the paragraph on Las Vegas
• Using your colors, underline/highlight each
element of the paragraph
• Identify each element of the paragraph like we
did with Cinderella and 3 Pigs
• ALSO identify the transitions, sentence starters
and NO, No’s for an English Lit. Response
Las Vegas
• Las Vegas is the most surreal city anywhere in the world. For
instance, the center of the city is full of different kinds of buildings
including a two-thirds scale Eiffel Tower, a giant black glass pyramid,
a scaled-down replica of the New York skyline, and a faux Medieval
castle. The whole place reminds me of a big amusement park like
Disneyland with its different “lands.”It’s as if each building was
constructed in isolation without any consideration of the other
buildings. In addition, this center is surrounded by a sprawl of
suburbs housing close to two million people and stretching out into
the desert. I always wonder what made so many people want to
live in such an inhospitable place. All those people and houses
almost seem as if they traveled across the wasteland and gathered
to pay homage to the weird buildings in the center. Las Vegas is
such a strange city, it is hard to believe it actually exists unless you
actually go there and experience it for yourself.
Las Vegas
(T)Las Vegas is the most surreal city anywhere in the world.
(CD)For instance, the center of the city is full of different kinds of
buildings including a two-thirds scale Eiffel Tower, a giant black
glass pyramid, a scaled-down replica of the New York skyline,
and a faux Medieval castle. (CM)The whole place reminds me of
a big amusement park like Disneyland with its different
“lands.”(CM)It’s as if each building was constructed in isolation
without any consideration of the other buildings. (CD)In
addition, this center is surrounded by a sprawl of suburbs
housing close to two million people and stretching out into the
desert. (CM)I always wonder what made so many people want
to live in such an inhospitable place.(CM)All those people and
houses almost seem as if they traveled across the wasteland and
gathered to pay homage to the weird buildings in the
center.(CS)Las Vegas is such a strange city, it is hard to believe it
actually exists unless you actually go there and experience it for
yourself.
Three layers
For an eleven-sentence paragraph, you
have three chunks:
•
Topic sentence
• CD = Support (hamburger patty)
– CM = Expansion (lettuce)
– CM = Expansion (tomato)
• CD = Support (hamburger patty)
– CM = Expansion (cheese)
– CM = Expansion (pickles)
• CD = Support (hamburger patty)
– CM = Expansion (special sauce)
– CM = Expansion (catsup)
 Concluding sentence
Transitions
• A good paragraph will also use transition
words. These are words or phrases that help
readers connect ideas.
• Example transitions:
For example,
For instance,
Consequently,
Thus,
In summary,
Because of this,
As a result,
Hence,
Therefore,
Blowing Chunks Quiz # 2
Directions:
• Using your colors, underline/highlight each
element of the Schaffer paragraph
• Identify and label each element of the
paragraph like we did with Cinderella, old 3
Pigs and Vegas
– Transitions
Blowing Chunks Quiz # 3
New Piggy
•
In the fairy tale “The Three Little Pigs,” the third pig has the
traits that help him succeed. For example, he is wise and
builds his house out of sturdy brick. The wolf is unable to blow
down the brick house. This shows that the third pig is smarter
than his brothers, who were both eaten by the wolf.
Additionally, he is a hard worker. Although it is much easier to
build a house out of straw, he chooses the material that will
hold up. Even though laying bricks is time-consuming, he
knows it is the better choice. This oldest pig also learns his
lessons. He remembers his mother taught him that predators
seek out little pigs. Knowing a wolf-attack is likely, he plans
out his home construction to prevent tragedy. In conclusion,
the third pig’s nature enables him to outsmart not only his
brothers, but the “big, bad” wolf as well.
Blowing Chunks Quiz # 3
New Piggy
• (TS) In the fairy tale “The Three Little Pigs,” the third pig has the
traits that help him succeed. For example, he is wise and builds
his house out of sturdy brick(CD). The wolf is unable to blow
down the brick house(CM). This shows that the third pig is
smarter than his brothers, who were both eaten by the
wolf(CM). Additionally, he is a hard worker(CD). Although it is
much easier to build a house out of straw, he chooses the
material that will hold up(CM). Even though laying bricks is
time-consuming, he knows it is the better choice(CM). This
oldest pig also learns his lessons(CD). He remembers his
mother taught him that predators seek out little pigs(CM).
Knowing a wolf-attack is likely, he plans out his home
construction to prevent tragedy(CM). In conclusion, the third
pig’s nature enables him to outsmart not only his brothers, but
the “big, bad” wolf as well(CS).
Blowing Chunks Quiz # 4
• Animal Farm
• Directions: color code and label each element
of the sentences according to the Chunk
paragraph format.
– Abbreviations
– Transitions
In Animal Farm, Clover represents a caring and motherly figure to the
other animals. She cares about keeping the animals together. She talks to
Mollie, the horse, when others will not. She isn’t mean to Mollie but
wants her to understand how her decision to leave may affect the farm. In
addition, Clover warns Boxer to slow down and nurses him when he
collapses. In her concern for him, she models the kind of behavior that the
animals wanted for Mr. Jones but did not get. She sees the injustice of the
system and understands the punishment of hard work. Furthermore, the
knowledge that something is wrong leads her to speak out. She sees the
changes in the Seven Commandments and in the pigs at the end. Her
commitment to Animal Farm is most important in her mind, and she
wants to put her beliefs into action. Clover works hard to help the other
animals regardless of what the negative consequences may be.
In Animal Farm, Clover represents a caring and motherly figure to the
other animals(TS). She cares about keeping the animals together(CM). She
talks to Mollie, the horse, when others will not(CD). She isn’t mean to
Mollie but wants her to understand how her decision to leave may affect
the farm(CM). In addition, Clover warns Boxer to slow down and nurses
him when he collapses(CD). In her concern for him she models the kind of
behavior that the animals wanted for Mr. Jones but did not get(CM). She
sees the injustice of the system and understands the punishment of hard
work(CM). Furthermore, the knowledge that something is wrong leads her
to speak out(CM). She perceives the changes in the Seven
Commandments and in the pigs at the end(CD). Her commitment to
Animal Farm is most important in her mind, and she wants to put her
beliefs into action(CM). Clover works hard to help the other animals
regardless of what the negative consequences may be(CS).
Blowing Chunks Quiz # 4 Retake
• F451
• Directions: color code and label each element
of the sentences according to the Chunk
paragraph format.
– Use Abbreviations
– Transitions
• The most notable method by which Bradbury illustrates humanity’s need for self
understanding is his user of metaphors about mirrors and images. Mirrors here
are symbols of self-understanding, of seeing oneself clearly. For example , in the
beginning of the novel, as Montag finishes up a call at a house, he fancies how
he would “wink at himself, a minstrel man, burnt-corked , in the
mirror”(Bradbury 4). He reveals how proud he is of his work, as seen with the
wink, and that he thinks rather highly of himself. However, the image that he
sees is deceptive; though he believes that he is looking at some sort of hero,
later events suggest otherwise. In addition, Montag sees that there is absolutely
no individuality amongst the firemen, a group of people that are reprehensive of
his society. Montag realizes that all of the firemen he had ever seen were “all
mirror images of himself”, with their “black hair, black brows, fiery face, and
blue-steel shaved but unshaved look”(Bradbury 33). This suggests that
something is wrong about being proud of uniqueness when there when there is
nothing that really sets him apart from the others. This is the beginning of
Montag’s own understanding of what plagues his society. Finally, as Montag,
Granger and the others journey back toward the destroyed city, Granger speaks
of building a mirror factory and how the new society will “put out nothing but
mirrors for the next year and take a long look in them”(Bradbury 164).
Granger’s use of figurative language reveals the hope that members of humanity
will be able to take a thoughtful look at themselves and their history. They now
have the chance to learn from their mistakes; only by seeing a true reflection of
themselves will they be able to avoid future horrors such as what they’d been
living. Thus, through the use of mirror and image metaphors in Fahrenheit 451,
Bradbury reveals that humankind can only move forward and lean from past
mistakes by maintaining a high level of clarity.
•
The most notable method by which Bradbury illustrates humanity’s need for self
understanding is his user of metaphors about mirrors and images (TS). Mirrors here are
symbols of self-understanding, of seeing oneself clearly(CM). For example , in the beginning
of the novel, as Montag finishes up a call at a house, he fancies how he would “wink at
himself, a minstrel man, burnt-corked , in the mirror”(Bradbury 4)(CD). He reveals how
proud he is of his work, as seen with the wink, and that he thinks rather highly of himself
(CM). However, the image that he sees is deceptive; though he believes that he is looking at
some sort of hero, later events suggest otherwise(CM). In addition, Montag sees that there
is absolutely no individuality amongst the firemen, a group of people that are reprehensive of
his society (CM). Montag realizes that all of the firemen he had ever seen were “all mirror
images of himself”, with their “black hair, black brows, fiery face, and blue-steel shaved but
unshaved look”(Bradbury 33)(CD). This suggests that something is wrong about being proud
of uniqueness when there when there is nothing that really sets him apart from the others
(CM). This is the beginning of Montag’s own understanding of what plagues his society (CM).
Finally, as Montag, Granger and the others journey back toward the destroyed city, Granger
speaks of building a mirror factory and how the new society will “put out nothing but mirrors
for the next year and take a long look in them”(Bradbury 164)(CD). Granger’s use of
figurative language reveals the hope that members of humanity will be able to take a
thoughtful look at themselves and their history (CM). They now have the chance to learn
from their mistakes; only by seeing a true reflection of themselves will they be able to avoid
future horrors such as what they’d been living (CM). Thus, through the use of mirror and
image metaphors in Fahrenheit 451, Bradbury reveals that humankind can only move
forward and lean from past mistakes by maintaining a high level of clarity (CS).
•
31 points: 2 points per sentence and 1 point per transitions
Writing Process Steps
Shaping the Essay
Intros and Conclusions
Essays must be a minimum of 4
paragraphs including the following
parts:
I:
Intro 40+ words
II:
1st body paragraph (100 + words)
III:
2nd body paragraph (100 + words)
IV:
Concluding paragraph 40+ words)
Why Bother Writing A Good Introduction?
1. You never get a second chance to make a first impression.
•
The opening paragraph of your paper will provide your readers with their initial impressions
of your argument, your writing style, and the overall quality of your work. A vague,
disorganized, error-filled, or boring introduction will probably create a negative impression.
On the other hand, a concise, engaging, and well-written introduction will start your
readers off thinking highly of your writing style and your paper.
2. Your introduction is an important road map for the rest of your paper.
•
Your introduction conveys a lot of information to your readers. You can let them know what
your topic is, why it is important, and how you plan to proceed with your discussion. . After
reading your introduction, your readers should not have any major surprises in store when
they read the main body of your paper.
3. Ideally, your introduction will make your readers want to read your paper.
•
The introduction should capture your readers' interest, making them want to read the rest
of your paper. Opening with a compelling story, a fascinating quotation, an interesting
question, or a stirring example can get your readers to see why this topic matters and serve
as an invitation for them to join you for an interesting intellectual conversation.
Shaping the Essay- terms to know
Intro Paragraphs
• Need a hook to get reader’s attention:
– anecdote / interesting or provocative statement / famous
quotation, etc.
•
•
•
•
•
Keep it brief—three or four full sentences
Thesis is usually stated at the end of the intro.
All CM – no CD!
Must include the author & title of the book (italicized)
Thesis shows your opinion about an arguable topic,
but NEVER “In my opinion, I think, I firmly believe…”
Shaping the Essay- terms to know
ANT method for Intro Paragraphs
• Attention getter
– Bridge sentence
• Necessary Information
– author & title of the book (italicized)
• Thesis statement
– See notes THESIS STATEMENTS IN LITERARY ANALYSIS
PAPERS
Shaping the Essay- terms to know
Bravery cannot exist where defense of the weak is easy.
Often, in order to help others, a hero must be willing to act
in ways that are frightening. In Rowling’s Harry Potter and
the Sorcerer's Stone, Harry risks much so that he can be a
champion for the underdog.
• This paper will answer the question, “What does Harry risk
as a young wizard in training?”
• 1st sentence = Attention getter/hook: broad statement not
about the book specifically – but related to and about the
topic of essay.
• 2nd sentence = bridge: same. Clarifies the first sentence.
• 3rd = necessary information and thesis.
Shaping the Essay- Thesis
• A thesis statement declares what you believe and what you intend
to prove
• A good thesis statement makes the difference between a
thoughtful response to literature and a simple retelling of facts
• Road map for the paper
– tells the reader what to expect from the rest of the paper.
• A thesis is an interpretation of a question or subject, not the subject
itself.
– The subject, or topic, of an essay might be World War II or Moby Dick;
a thesis must then offer a way to understand the war or the novel.
• It should pass the So what? or Who cares? test
Shaping the Essay- Thesis
• Specific topic + Attitude/Angle/Argument = Thesis
Your thesis statement should include two parts: WHAT
and WHY.
• *WHAT: What claim are you making about the text?
• *WHY: Why should we care? Why is your claim
important? Your thesis should answer the “so what?”
question.
Shaping the Essay- Thesis
A thesis statement is an assertion, not a statement of fact
or an observation.
• Fact or observation: People use many lawn chemicals.
• Thesis: People are poisoning the environment with
chemicals merely to keep their lawns clean.
• A thesis statement is "a basic argument” that clearly
articulates what the thesis or is expected to
demonstrate
Examples of Literary Thesis Statements:
• “Mark Twain’s Huckleberry Finn is a great American novel.”
– What’s wrong with this thesis statement?
– An opinion about the book, not an argument.
•
“In Huckleberry Finn, Mark Twain develops a contrast between life on
the river and life on the shore.”
– Better? How so? What is still missing?
– Doesn’t answer the “so what?” question—what is the point of the
contrast? What does the contrast signify?
• “Through its contrasting river and shore scenes, Twain’s Huckleberry
Finn suggests that to find the true expression of American ideals, one
must leave ‘civilized’ society and go back to nature.”
– Even better?
– It presents an interpretation of a literary work based on an analysis
of it content and answers the “so what” question.
Examples of Literary Thesis Statements:
“Edgar Allen Poe’s work was affected greatly by the
current events of his life, covering his family life,
his childhood, and his career; these events
changed his style and subject of his works.”
• What’s wrong with this thesis statement?
– More questions than answers:
•
•
•
•
Which works will be explored?
What current events?
What childhood or career events?
How did Poe’s style change and WHY IS IT IMPORTANT?
Examples of Literary Thesis Statements:
“There is a lot of symbolism in The Scarlet
Letter.”
– Bad? Why?
“Hawthorne’s use of symbolism in The Scarlet
Letter falters and ultimately breaks down with
the introduction of the character Pearl.”
– Better? Why?
Examples of Literary Thesis Statements:
“The character of Ben in Arthur Miller’s Death of a
Salesman is a great [or important, or crucial, or
unforgettable, etc.] character.”
– What’s wrong with thesis?
– This does not say enough to serve as the basis for an essay.
Besides, each of these judgments is entirely a matter of
personal opinion because none of them define the criteria
by which the judgment is being made.
“Through Paul’s experience behind the lines, at a Russian
prisoner of war camp, and especially under
bombardment in the trenches Erich Maria Remarque
realistically shows how war dehumanizes a man.”
– What can we anticipate that the author of this thesis will
prove to us in the rest of the paper?
Examples of Literary Thesis Statements:
Which is the best thesis statement?
• Moby-Dick is about the problem of evil.
• Moby-Dick is boring and pointless.
• Moby-Dick is about a big, white whale.
• The symbolic use of “whiteness” in Moby-Dick
illustrates the uncertainty about the meaning of life
that Ishmael expresses throughout the novel.
Shaping the Essay- Concluding
Paragraph
Concluding Paragraph – may sum up ideas,
reflect on what was said in the essay, give more
commentary, or a personal statement about the
subject.
ALL COMMENTARY
Gives A Finished
Feeling To The Essay
Does Not Repeat Keywords
From The Paper Or Intro.
Strategies for Writing an Effective
Conclusion
•
Play the "So What" Game. If you're stuck and feel like your conclusion isn't saying anything new or
interesting, ask a friend to read it with you. Whenever you make a statement from your conclusion,
ask the friend to say, "So what?" or "Why should anybody care?" Then ponder that question and
answer it. Here's how it might go:
You: Basically, I'm just saying that education was important to Douglass.
Friend: So what?
You: Well, it was important because it was a key to him feeling like a free and equal citizen.
Friend: Why should anybody care?
You: That's important because plantation owners tried to keep slaves from being educated so that they
could maintain control. When Douglass obtained an education, he undermined that control
personally.
•
•
You can also use this strategy on your own, asking yourself "So What?" as you develop your ideas or
your draft.
Return to the theme or themes in the introduction. This strategy brings the reader full circle. For
example, if you begin by describing a scenario, you can end with the same scenario as proof that
your essay is helpful in creating a new understanding. You may also refer to the introductory
paragraph by using key words or parallel concepts and images that you also used in the
introduction.
More Strategies for Writing an
Effective Conclusion
• Synthesize, don't summarize: Include a brief summary of the paper's main
points, but don't simply repeat things that were in your paper. Instead,
show your reader how the points you made and the support and examples
you used fit together. Pull it all together.
• Include a provocative insight or quotation from the research or reading
you did for your paper.
• Propose a course of action, a solution to an issue, or questions for further
study. This can redirect your reader's thought process and help her to
apply your info and ideas to her own life or to see the broader
implications.
• Point to broader implications. For example, if your paper examines the
Greensboro sit-ins or another event in the Civil Rights Movement, you
could point out its impact on the Civil Rights Movement as a whole. A
paper about the style of writer Virginia Woolf could point to her influence
on other writers or on later feminists.
Strategies to Avoid in Your Conclusion
• Beginning with an unnecessary, overused phrase such as
"in conclusion," "in summary," or "in closing." Although
these phrases can work in speeches, they come across as
wooden and trite in writing.
• Stating the thesis for the very first time in the conclusion.
• Introducing a new idea or subtopic in your conclusion.
• Ending with a rephrased thesis statement without any
substantive changes.
• Making sentimental, emotional appeals that are out of
character with the rest of an analytical paper.
• Including evidence (quotations, statistics, etc.) that should
be in the body of the paper.
Parts of the Essay
1.
Introductory Paragraph
A. ANT method
a) Attention getter/hook
b) Necessary Information
c)
Thesis
2. Body Paragraph
A. Topic sentence
a) CD = Support (hamburger patty)
i.
CM = Expansion (lettuce)
ii.
CM = Expansion (tomato)
b) CD = Support (hamburger patty)
i.
CM = Expansion (cheese)
ii.
CM = Expansion (pickles)
c)
CD = Support (hamburger patty)
i.
CM = Expansion (special sauce)
ii.
CM = Expansion (catsup)
B. Concluding Sentence
3. Conclusion Paragraph

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