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Unformatted text preview: Paper Writing Reminders 1) Have you devised an appropriate title? The title should indicate your general subject (e.g., Huck Finn ) and your specific thesis (e.g., Huck rebels against the moral order). Example: “All right then I’ll go to hell”: Huck Finn’s Rebellion Against the Moral Order Consider this progression: An Essay (F) Emerson: An Essay (D) Emerson and Transcendentalism (C) Emerson’s “Nature” and Transcendentalism (B) Emerson’s “Nature” and the Birth of Transcendentalism (B+) Emerson’s “Nature”: the Founding Text of New England Transcendentalism (A) 2) Have you articulated a clear thesis statement? Papers that are not anchored by a definite thesis tend to wander. Announce with laser-sharp precision what you are trying to argue or show and then stick to your point. Examples: Mark Twain’s Huck Finn follows the young hero Huck as he makes his way down the Mississippi and develops confidence in his own moral rebellion. Finally declaring “All right then I’ll go to hell,” Huck joins Prometheus and Milton’s Satan as one of the great insurrectionary humanists of literature (235). In his famous treatise The Prince , Niccolò Machiavelli argues that in order to maintain his throne a prince must sometimes “act against faith, against charity, against humanity, and against religion” (589). Yet history gives many examples of rulers who retained power over long periods without deviating from these four virtues. With its rich mix of populations, New York offers the adventurous diner an incomparable variety of ethnic foods. This variety more than compensates for occasional inauthentic touches, and makes New York the greatest eating town in the world. Sophocles’ Oedipus Rex contains one of the most famous scenes in all of Western literature. Having discovered that he has murdered his father and shared a bed with his mother, Oedipus gouges out his eyes with a brooch taken from dead Iocaste’s breast. Oedipus’ literal blindness is not an arbitrary affliction, but a realization of the figurative blindness that brought about his downfall. 3) A good paragraph has four characteristics: 1) It supports the thesis, 2) It announces its own idea with a clear sub-thesis, 3) It embodies a single idea (rather than intermingling different ideas or suddenly changing directions), and 4) It forwards the discussion or argument without repeating the contents of other paragraphs. Have you begun each paragraph with a sharp, clear, strong sub-thesis that announces the graph’s content and relates the graph back to your main thesis? Does each paragraph stick to its own sub-thesis? Have you avoided overlap between paragraphs and generally avoided repeating yourself?...
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- Spring '07
- Transcendentalism, Relative pronoun, Relative clause, Quotation mark, quotation marks