Composition Patterns Using Examples

Composition Patterns Using Examples - Using Examples One of...

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Using Examples One of most impressive forms of argument (which is not really an argument at all) is to use examples of whatever it is we're talking about. It is also one of the most common forms of discourse and we use it constantly, even in the most informal discussions. Ask people what they mean, and they will surely answer with an example, an illustration. The Guide to Grammar and Writing is practically one example after another. When writing an illustration or example assignment, we will have to decide how many examples will be enough to make our point and then, if we use more than one, in what order should we use them. Do we work up to the most persuasive point or illustration or do we begin with that and then fill in with more details? No one pattern will work all the time, and it's going to depend on the argument we choose to back up with examples. You'll also have to decide when to stop. If you're trying to define what it means to be a good teacher, how many examples of good teaching do you have to give before you make your point? You need enough examples to make a valid point, but not so many that your reader will put down the essay and walk out the door. Be careful of the Transitions you use to connect your examples. It is too easy simply to number them, but then our essay begins to sound like a mathematical exercise. If it helps to organize your paper, you can number your examples at first and then go back over the paper and provide other transitions (another advantage of word-processing). Get in the habit of providing steps, though, from one piece of the puzzle to another. Speaking of examples, let's look at one now, an essay that illustrates the writer's suspicion that news programs are getting longer and longer and offering less and less actual news. It was written by a student, Geton Hamurd, who gives us permission to use his paper. Brainstorming for this essay is easy, Mr. Hamurd says: sit in front of the television for an hour and take notes, keeping score of the things that are news and the things that aren't. To be completely fair, Hamurd adds, we should probably do this over the period of a week or on random nights over a month (to make sure that we didn't catch the news on a bad night), and it would be fun to use a stopwatch to time the ads, too, but we'll let you do that for your own paper. What Happened to the News? When television news started out, back in the 1950s, it occupied less than a thirty-minute slot. Ten or fifteen minutes would be granted to local stations for their news, and then the networks would say all there was to say about national and world news in the remaining fifteen to twenty minutes. There were very few advertisements during the news; it wasn't regarded as appropriate to sponsor news about floods and fires and political disasters. Life must have been simpler then. Nowadays many television stations set apart ninety minutes for local news alone, and that's just for the early
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Composition Patterns Using Examples - Using Examples One of...

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