argument essay

READING TO PREPARE FOR THE PAPER (Please read these as soon as you can):

“Consider the Lobster” by David Foster Wallace

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“A Hanging,” by George Orwell

A Hanging

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3. “Assault Weapons and High-Capacity Magazines Must be Banned”

Assault Weapons and High-Capacity Magazines Must Be Banned

These sources explain the three parts of an Argument (Claim, Support or Evidence, and Warrant), and you can quote from these in your paper:

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You will write an Argument Essay, which argues for or against (there are variations on this) something that is important to you or perhaps at a certain point in time. Your argument will be based on a CLAIM (Chapter 6), which is “the conclusion you reach when you are trying to decide what to say about a subject; it becomes your thesis when you write about that subject.

There are three types of claims: CLAIMS OF FACT, CLAIMS OF VALUE, and CLAIMS OF POLICY.

Claim of Fact: States that a condition exists, has existed, or will exist, based on factual evidence.

Examples: Drinking too much alcohol can turn into alcoholism. Cats don’t really like people.

Claim of Value: Desirable or undesirable based on moral or Aesthetic principles.

Examples: Disneyland is the best amusement park in America. Dogs make better pets than cats.

Claim of Policy: States that a specific course of action should or should not be implemented.

Examples: College students should not have to struggle to get classes. The drinking age should be 18.

Creating a Strong Topic and Claim:

Make sure your topic is interesting and important. Make a list of a few ideas and narrow that list based on your own criteria. Ideas:

Which of my topics would a reader be able to relate to?

Which topic can I turn into an argument?

Which has several points and could be a claim of Fact, Value or Policy?

Which do I care most about, and which would my reader care most about?

Would any of my ideas be offensive to the reader?

Will I be able to support my topic with sources?

Am I excited about the topic?

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