Introduction to Essay #1:
Reading the essay prompt:
This first essay, you will notice if you read the other two prompts on page 4 of
your syllabus, is not different from the other essays you will write for this class.
In all cases, you will be studying the rhetoric of story, and analyzing certain
stories to do so. This first essay prompt is only slightly more specific in its
requirements, in that I have limited your general topic to two choices. Either
topic you choose, however, will require further focus, which will be your
decision, according to what interests you in the story.
So, looking at the prompt, we can see that it is fairly general: it gives you a page
length (3 pages), and choices between two general topics: either the study of
DIALOGUE in Hemingway’s story or the study of CHARACTER in Porter’s.
iii. What I’d like to do now, before we go into any questions you might have, is talk
about how you can begin to develop your essay using Crider’s essay, of which I
assigned pages 1-42 for today.
II. The goals of today’s lecture are:
To introduce students to the use of rhetoric
To introduce the use of rhetoric in the academic essay
To summarize Crider’s essay for certain, important applications towards writing
I will not attempt to go over Crider’s entire essay point by point, because I
believe that you are well capable of studying and digesting his finer points and
examples on your own, and indeed should refer back to his essay throughout the
quarter as you develop your own.
III. First, I’d like to note why I have chosen Crider for this class. I hope you will note (and
take on) his spirit for knowledge as being an end in itself—too often I hear students
simply write off a class because it is not directly involved in their own major (“I’m not an
English person”). Such a spirit towards learning is why you all are here in university,
which is not, technically, a requirement. Also, the essays you write in class (in any class)
need not be limited to that class, but can lead to greater things—not least the development
of your own intellectual powers.
IV. Next, let’s break down what we have read for today’s class: