Development of an original argument directly in response to the argument of another writer.

Essay #1: Summary and Response

Length: 2-3 pages

Primary Source: Heather Douglas, “The Dark Side of Science”

Purpose:

In this assignment, you will develop an original argument directly in response to the argument of another writer. Specifically, you will practice critical reading skills, presenting a clear and precise argument in your thesis statement, supporting your thesis with effective paragraphs, and incorporating sources (by quoting, summarizing, and paraphrasing) in MLA format (through in-text citations and Works Cited page).

Summary and Introduction:

In the introductory paragraph, you will present a summary (5-7 sentences) of the author’s main argument and key points. No need to give examples from the article; you’ll do that in the body of your essay. The summary should be written in your own words, followed by an in-text citation. Remember, the argument isn’t merely what the article is “about,” but rather what the writer is actively trying to persuade you to think or feel about a particular issue or subject.

Thesis statement:

You may draw from the *three templates we discussed in class:

1. “Disagree – and Explain Why”2. “Agree – But With a Difference”3. “Agree and Disagree Simultaneously”

*Adapted from They Say, I Say

Remember that the above are not merely fill-in-the-blanks responses, but rather, templates to help you brainstorm and articulate your thesis. Feel free to adapt as needed.

Supporting argument/body:

Next, you’ll “prove” and support your thesis throughout the body of your essay (3-5 body paragraphs). Each body paragraph should include a clear topic sentence and supporting examples from the text.

Conclusion:

Re-emphasize and expand on your own argument. Reflect on why this topic is important beyond the scope of your essay. Remember tone as well – these are your closing remarks to the reader.

– must be a statement of assertion (claims)

– should not be a fact or an observation

– someone familiar w/ article could reasonably disagree.

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