Madison Woods's Request (30 Nov 2018)

I have been assigned an argumentative essay. I had peers review it and they thought it was okay but my professor said my thesis and topic sentences didn't seem to make an argument so I need some help making my thesis and some other stuff seem argumentative enough.

submitted: Nov 30, 2018
responded: Dec 03, 2018
  • method: email
1 Comment:
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  • Maria Batty (admin)
    Dec. 3, 2018, 9:43 a.m.

    Dear Madison, Thank you for writing to Athena. An argumentative thesis statement is something like this: Although some people think ____, in fact _______ because _____, _____, and __________. Or: Some people think ____, but in fact ______, ______, and _______. The last three (or however many you have) points are discussed in your body paragraphs. Your three thesis points are all misconceptions, and you don’t have much discussion of why they arise or what’s really at work: You simply offer evidence that they are not true. That’s not quite enough. For example, perhaps people on food stamps do buy more “junk” food—not necessarily “fast” food (be precise in your terminology)—because they tend to live in food “deserts,” where fresh, healthier food is not available. That discussion, with supporting evidence, would clarify why people believe that poor people eat poorly. People don’t change their minds simply because you throw studies at them. You have to show them what’s really behind their misperceptions. Remember that a sentence ends after the in-text citation, so the period goes after the closing parenthesis. Also, you tend to use a lot of passive voice: “It can be seen” and so forth. That gets tedious to read very quickly. Try to keep your writing in active voice as much as possible. I hope you find these comments helpful. If you don't understand how to organize your paper around a thesis statement or how to recognize and correct the types of errors I’ve mentioned, come into a lab to work with a tutor face to face, or post specific questions here on Athena. Also, handouts are available at Click on Handouts on the left, and then Grammar and Writing Handouts. Good luck! If you have a moment, please cut and paste this address into your browser, and take our survey. Thanks!

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