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The Parts of an Essay Your Guide to Writing Strong Academic Essays.

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Presentation on theme: "The Parts of an Essay Your Guide to Writing Strong Academic Essays."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Parts of an Essay Your Guide to Writing Strong Academic Essays

2 Literary Analysis The goals for literary analysis  Closely examine texts  Interpret, understand texts’ meanings  Appreciate the writer’s techniques Most importantly: How do the parts work together to make a whole?

3 Your Audience Your audience is your teacher  She has read the texts: NO SUMMARY  Assume you know something about the texts that she doesn’t. Your goal is to explain YOUR ideas about the text.

4 The Three Parts Introduction  One paragraph, maybe more in longer papers Body  Approximately 2 paragraphs per page  This is not the five paragraph essay Conclusion  One paragraph, maybe more in longer papers

5 Introduction Establish common ground with the reader, but no overgeneralizations Should provide necessary background information or context. Should give a brief preview of the upcoming essay, a couple sentences Thesis statement is the last sentence of the first paragraph.

6 The Thesis Statement must be one sentence is the most important sentence in the essay Must take a position with which a reasonable person might disagree Should be specific and bold and interpretive

7 The Body Develops and supports the thesis statement  By providing specific examples and evidence  By interpreting and explaining the significance of said examples and evidence Ideas should proceed in a logical order and advance the argument step by step

8 The Body Paragraph The typical body paragraph will have these elements:  Topic sentence, and perhaps transition  Context for a quotation  Textual evidence  Interpretation of the text  Concluding thought, and perhaps transition

9 Evidence is essential Paraphrases  Writer briefly describes a passage of the story  Good when content matters more than language Quotations  Good for phrases and when the language itself is important  Weave quotes into your own sentences  Only use the most important part of the quote, not whole sentence  Don’t overuse quotations

10 The Conclusion Should not be a summary Provide closure for the reader  Answer the question, “Why is the idea I’ve been discussing important? Significant?”  Bring the ideas you’ve been discussing out of the literature and into the real world

11 Conventions Third Person Present tense MLA Format: citations and heading Serious, academic tone; but not cluttered or inflated – keep the writing tight and focused Avoid rhetorical questions

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