Presentation on theme: "The Anatomy of An Essay “The Anatomy Lesson of Dr. Nicolas Tulp” by Rembrandt, 1632 Source:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Anatomy_Lesson_of_Dr._Nicolaes_Tulp."— Presentation transcript:
1 The Anatomy of An Essay“The Anatomy Lesson of Dr. Nicolas Tulp” by Rembrandt, 1632 Source:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Anatomy_Lesson_of_Dr._Nicolaes_Tulp
2 The Anatomy of a Basic College Essay Please click on any of the links in the right column below for more detailed explanation s of the parts of the essay.BeginningMiddleEndThe IntroductionHookBackground InformationThesisEssay MapThe BodyTopical Organization PatternNarrative Organization PatternComparison Organization PatternConclusionPurpose of ConclusionConclusion StrategiesBackground Image:
3 The Anatomy of the Beginning of an Essay or The Structure of the Essay IntroductionEveryday World of the ReaderBackground InformationIf NecessaryHookThesis StatementEssay MapIntroductory paragraph of an essay or introductory section of several paragraphsWorld of the PaperBody of Paper
4 The HookThe hook in most college essays brings the reader from his or her world into the world of the paper. It involves starting the piece of writing with something especially interesting, vivid, funny, perhaps a shocking statistic or a story. Sometimes students simply begin the essay with their thesis statement, which can be a hook by itself, if it’s intriguing or an unusual perspective. Some professors don’t want a hook and prefer you dive right into your point; others will ask for a well-written essay with a hook. If you aren’t sure, ask!This kind of essay is different from scientific writing in which the introduction style is prescribed. Scientific writing has its own style of organization that is not as much concerned with the reader. It is focused more on accuracy and analysis of data, which we will also cover in this module.Sample hook with a vivid Image of a hypothetical essay we will be developing:One of the most shocking images of the entire Iraq war is the photo an Iraqi prisoner of war in Abu Ghraib prison in a Christ-like pose, standing pitifully defeated and humiliated, draped in a tattered black sack with a pointed dunce cappulled over his entire head.Please click on this box to see specific hook strategies at the MIT Resources for Writers site.Decide which hook strategies you have used in the past or which you prefer to use.
5 Background Information in an Essay Introduction Providing background information in an essay introduction serves as a bridge to link the reader to the essay topic. But exactly how long this bridge should be is largely dependent on how much information the writer thinks the reader will need in order to understand the issue being discussed and to appreciate the importance of the issue.In general, you don’t need to provide a complete history of the topic. Often students will give more background than readers need; you should provide just enough background on the issue to get the reader up to speed.This example below is the opening of a L.A. Times editorial by Jim Newton. Note how this professional begins his article by trying to hook the reader, provide background info and transitioning into the thesisof the article whxLee Baca answers to the voters, so how much pressure can the supervisors really assert?By Jim NewtonNovember 7, 2011It's understandable that the Los Angeles County supervisors, confronted with a series of troubling reports of violence against inmates by sheriff's deputies in the county jails, are appointing a special commission to investigate the department and recommend reforms. That was the approach Mayor Tom Bradley took in 1991 after the Rodney King beating rocked confidence in the Los Angeles Police Department and fueled public demands for change. The Christopher Commission ultimately became a model of modern police inquiry and helped restore confidence not only in the LAPD but in Los Angeles itself.But this commission may have a hard time following in those footsteps. The Sheriff's Department is an entirely different entity than the LAPD, and the recommendations of an outside inquiry would be unlikely to lead to change.HookBackground InformationThesis statementClick here for the entire article
6 The Thesis Statement Closed-Loop Circulatory System The thesis is your main point about your subject. It is your focus or angle on the subject.It’s a concept.It is the unifying center around which a paper is written.The thesis is your claim with logical reasons that support your point of view.You can analyze, observe, problem-solve, argue, explain, or synthesize in your thesis.The thesis statement is the actual expression of your thesis in words on paper, or in a document.It is usually located at the end of your introductory paragraphs or paragraphs. It is usually one or two sentences long.It is possible to locate a thesis statement anywhere in an essay, sometimes in the conclusion.Some writers are so good that they simply imply their theses without saying them directly. Remember, however, a college essay is not a mystery and you not trying to surprise your reader by withholding your thesis statement until the end.Most importantly, your reader must follow your point from beginning to end. Readers need to know your thesis and your attitude about the subject as soon as possible in order to follow what you are saying.The Thesis Statement: Donald Rumsfeld, George Bush’s defense secretary, was responsible for the Abu Ghraib torture scandal.The Thesis Statement Closed-Loop Circulatory SystemThesis Statement (& essay map)IntroductionBody Paragraph/Reason 1Body Paragraph/Reason 3Body Paragraph/Reason 2ConclusionThe Thesis Statement Circulatory SystemThe thesis statement is the heart of the essay. Every paragraph that follows the thesis supports the thesis and does not drift off track. The writer uses body paragraphs to support, illustrate, or prove his or her thesis. The thesis gives the essay energy to move forward toward the conclusion. Every paragraph refers back to the thesis. The conclusion sums up and refers back to the thesis and perhaps the hook or something else in the intro.
7 Essay Map Points to Remember SampleThesis and Essay Map for Our Hypothetical Essay.Donald Rumsfeld, George Bush’s defense secretary, was responsible for the Abu Ghraib torture scandal because 1 he clearly knew torture was going on in Abu Ghraib and did not stop it. 2 Also, Rumsfeld was encouraged by Vice President Cheney to use torture, and 3 Rumsfeld and Cheney carried a stereotyped, racist attitude toward Iraqis--that all middle-easterners use torture and so should we.In the example above, the thesis comes first. The essay map that follows has three points (or reasons that justify what will be covered in the paper, in the same order as they are presented in the essay map).Thesis is red. Essay map is blue and the points being mapped are numbered 1-3.Essay Map Points to RememberThe essay map is often considered part of a thesis statement.An essay map is also known by other names, like “forecasting statement” and “projected organization statement.”Essay maps tells the reader how the essay will go as they read it.“Just do it” is what readers want writers to do in writing. Readers want an efficient and a streamlined reading experience and don’t like a lot of descriptions, such as “In this paper, I am going to….”Although essay maps are not required, you should use them in most academic essays.Narratives and stories often do not need essay maps since they are chronologically ordered and the organization is obvious.A writer must follow the order of the essay map in developing the rest of his or her essay or it will throw the readers off and make the paper more confusing.
8 Click here for an anatomical diagram of a typical body paragraph The BodyThe body of the essay is the largest section. Each body paragraph stays on track and clearly supports the thesis in some way. The “5-Paragraph Essay” is the minimal acceptable essay form for most college writing assignments. The body of the 5-Paragraph Essay has 3 paragraphs, plus an introductory paragraph and a conclusion paragraph, five paragraphs in all. However, it is important to remember that often you need many more paragraphs than three to fully cover the topic or assignment. Obviously, a typical college assignment of a 10-page paper would need many more paragraphs than three. The 5-paragraph form is expandable.Paragraphing Rule: There is one main point per paragraph. In modern writing, influenced by web-based writing, paragraphs must be very short because most web readers scan. That doesn’t mean you can’t write much. It just means readers are used to more paragraphs. In the halls of many academic institutions there is more patience for long paragraphs, fully reasoned and illustrated; they are even demanded by some professors. However, today, long passages are often chunked down into many smaller paragraphs.https://encrypted-tbn2.google.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcTUMcZWrZ6uTGWmyyQH8_pQqCog0Zx2OWSpsLVoD5lLFjaZEvnxBreath Paragraphing: Often, changing to a new paragraph is like a breath between ideas. If a period is a short pause after a complete thought before starting the next thought, then a paragraph is a longer pause or deeper, longer breath, to shift to a different, but related, thought. If the introduction is the head of an essay, paragraphs are the torso and lungs of an essay.Topical OrganizationBody paragraphs should be logically arranged. Their order should correspond to the topics in the essay map.Body Paragraph 3 – Supports the third point in the essay map with supporting evidence, examples, quotes from authorities, statistics, cases, results, testimony, stories, anecdotes, etc.Body Paragraph 2 – Supports the second point in the essay map with supporting evidence, examples, quotes from authorities, statistics, cases, results, testimony, stories, anecdotes, etc.Body Paragraph 1 – Supports the first point in the essay map with supporting evidence, examples, quotes from authorities, statistics, cases, results, testimony, stories, anecdotes, etc.Click here for an anatomical diagram of a typical body paragraph.The Thesis Statement: Donald Rumsfeld, George Bush’s defense secretary, was responsible for the Abu Ghraib torture scandal because he clearly knew torture was going on in Abu Ghraib and did not stop it. Also, Rumsfeld was encouraged by Vice President Cheney to use torture, and Rumsfeld and Cheney carried a stereotyped, racist attitude toward Iraqis--that all middle-easterners use torture and so should we.All paragraphs support the thesis and advance the writer’s point of view.Image link: https://encrypted-tbn2.google.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcTUMcZWrZ6uTGWmyyQH8_pQqCog0Zx2OWSpsLVoD5lLFjaZEvnx
9 Topic Sentence for Body Paragraph 1 Paragraph 1 Concluding Sentence ThesisThe Body ParagraphTopic Sentence for Body Paragraph 1The topic sentence refers back to the thesis in some way.Donald Rumsfeld did nothing when he was first informed about Abu Ghraib. (Essay Map Point 1)Click on photo for image sourceParagraph Body 1Supports, proves and illustrates the topic sentence with testimony, examples, cases, statistics, research, studies, quotes from books, journals, magazines or people.As Seymour Hersh explains his New Yorker article on CNN , Rumsfeld ignored memos on torture (click on image for video)..Paragraph 1 Concluding SentenceSums up and/ or restates the topic sentence.Therefore, it is clear that Rumsfeld is responsible for torture in Abu Ghraib because he knew about it from memos and didn’t say anything.The topic sentence refers back to the thesis and provides focus for the paragraph.The body of the paragraph supports the topic sentence.The conclusion sums up the point. The topic sentence of the next paragraph echoes what has been said in the previous paragraph and makes a new point at the same time.Paragraph 2 echoes Paragraph #1’s concluding sentence to link them together smoothly.Next Paragraph (#2) Topic SentenceFurthermore, not only did Rumsfeld ignore memos about the torture that was happening, Vice-President Cheney encouraged his viewpoint. (Essay Map Point 2)
10 Narrative Organization So far in this presentation, we have been talking about the “topical organization” of an essay. In topical organization, the thesis and essay map presents three main points, reasons, criteria, causes , or topics. Thus, the essay is topically organized. Each topic will be developed in a separate paragraph. However, there are other ways to organize essays, of course, like narrative.OpeningParagraph 1Paragraph 2Paragraph 3EndingIncident 1Incident 2Reader InterestKey incidentEnding, conclusion, summing up, observationRising Action of the main conflict or pointIn a narrative, the writer writes in chronological order. The writer tells a story about someone else or him/herself. As in fiction stories, the essay’s body paragraphs follow each other in time (except for flashbacks, which we will not get into here—look into taking a creative writing class to learn about that). The body paragraphs also build on each other toward the key incident. Then the narrative ends, summing up or observing what happened and why. Often a writer will use a combination of organizational methods, but that can be risky. Whatever organization is chosen, it must make sense and the paragraphs should lead into each other without the reader thinking, “I don’t understand why is she or he is writing on this topic now.”If a writer is analyzing the causes of the rise of the Tea Party, he or she will start at the beginning and work chronologically up to the present. If a writer is writing a profile of George Clooney, he or she might show him through a story of the writer’s experience when interviewing him. Narrative writing can be fiction or non-fiction. It can be written in first person (I) or third person (he, she) depending on one’s purpose. First person can be very intimate, or annoying if there is too much focus on the “I.” It is a very informal style of writing and may not always be appropriate for analytical writing assignments.
11 When comparing similar things there are two organizational patterns: ComparisonWhen comparing similar things there are two organizational patterns:Point by pointBlockL’Oréal is better makeup than Max Factor because it uses higher quality materials, has a broader selection of colors and stays on longer.Point by Point PatternBlock PatternParagraph 1--Point 1 - Higher quality materials.L’Oréal—Quality of materialsMax Factor—Quality of materialsBlock 13 paragraphsL’OréalHigher quality materials.Broader selection of colorsStays on longer.Must be in same order in Block 1 as in Block 2Paragraph 2--Point 2 - Broader selection of colors.L’Oréal—Selection of colorsMax Factor—Selection of colorsBlock 23 paragraphsMax FactorLower quality materials.Smaller selection of colors.Doesn’t stay on as long.Paragraph 3--Point 3 - Stays on longer.L’Oréal—Length of “wearability .”Max Factor—Length of “wearability .”
12 Purpose of a Conclusion Writing a good conclusion of an essay is tricky. The writer ties up the essay and brings it to closure in an effective way. In a way, to continue our anatomy analogy in this presentation, the conclusion is the legs of the essay. The intro and thesis (the head) rest on the body of the essay (the body of evidence and support), and this is supported in the conclusion, or on the legs of the essay, giving the essay final power.In a conclusion, the reader wants a quick review of the material. The reader also expects you to tie the essay together around the thesis and explain your main point once again, because the reader is trying to understand what he or she has just read.Since readers have taken the time to read the essay, they also want to know what they should do with the information or new insight they have gained. There are very obvious and formulaic ways to end an essay like “summarize your main points and repeat the thesis.” This doesn’t really doesn't synthesize the information; it simply repeats it.A conclusion harkens back to the introduction, reviews what you have said, and drives home the point of the paper. Ideally, the conclusion returns readers from the world of the paper to their everyday reality with a new understanding.
13 Conclusion Strategies The classic formula for radio news writing, business presentations and even college papers is “Tell ’em what you’re going to tell them. Tell ’em. And then tell ’em what you told them.” However, we must remember this advice is designed for listeners, not readers. Writers can be a little more nuanced and a little more “slick” in written conclusions. . Like surgeons finishing up an operation, making sure everything is carefully stitched up and the patient is ready to go, nothing left undone, writers tie up their writing.One of the most common pieces of advice for conclusions is that writers should call the readers to action, to do something, like vote, call your congressman, support a cause, etc. However, there are many more strategies for different writing purposes.Please click on the buttons below to read further about how to write conclusions. A question from this excellent, concise University of North Carolina will be on the Mastery Exercise Quiz.Web pages:UNC Conclusion StrategiesSt. Cloud State University Conclusion Strategies