Definition essay

I would like to know which concept you will be using for my essay. I prefer the Divorce as a concept for my essay and use the Negative Definition.

I need the introduction by Tuesday 2/9 !!!

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Prompt: Paper #1: Concept Redefining Essay:

Instructions:

Write a “definition” essay in which you define an abstract concept of your choosing, such as: love, home, truth, money, war, knowledge, family, freedom, fate, loneliness, time, philosophy, god, nothingness, uncertainty, faith, heaven, fear, happiness, hate, existence, anger, friendship, foolishness, jealousy, power, beauty, comedy, commitment, sadness, nature, death, luck, etc. Define whichever concept you choose in a new or interesting way. Do not just give the standard definition of that word. Make sure to make an argument when defining your term

 

Sample Thesis Statements for Paper#1

Don’t use these examples, but you can choose the same concept.

Intelligence is not the degree of an ability to know things, but the degree of an ability to understand that we do not know things.

CONCEPT DEFINED: “Intelligence”
MODE OF DEFINITION: Negative Definition
DEFINITION DEBUNKED: “Intelligence is the degree of an ability to know things.”
Divorce is not the break-up of families; it is a way to for some families to find a new and better way to exist.
CONCEPT DEFINED: “Divorce”
MODE OF DEFINITION: Negative Definition
DEFINITION DEBUNKED: “Divorce breaks up families.

 

The Four Parts of an Essay:
Introduction: The first paragraph of an essay introduces the topic and funnels down to the thesis statement.
Thesis Statement: Usually appearing at the end of the introduction, the thesis statement is the main argument of the essay distilled into one single sentence.
Body Paragraphs: The majority of an essay is taken up by the body paragraphs which contain sub-arguments that connect to prove the main argument (thesis statement) as well as evidence and analysis to back-up those sub-arguments.
Conclusion: The final paragraph of an essay generally ties everything together into a nice bow, leaving the reader with a sense of the main ideas presented.

The Three Parts of an Introduction
Engaging Hook (for our purposes, this should be around 1-4 sentences)
Connecting Bridge (for our purposes, this should be around 1-4 sentences)
Thesis Statement (this should generally be just 1 sentence)
Engaging Hook

The point of the hook is to be engaging. Its sole purpose is to engage the reader. If the reader is a fish you are trying to reel in, then the hook needs to bait them. What do fishermen use on their hooks? Usually either a shiny lure or some food bait. Think of your engaging hook as being the shiny lure or food bait that attracts the fish to take notice.

There are many possible hooks, but some of the most common examples are:

An Interesting Quote
EXAMPLE 1: When questioned about the details of his relationship with White House intern Monica Lewinsky, President Bill Clinton famously equivocated, “It depends upon what the meaning of the word ‘is’ is.”
EXAMPLE 2: Oscar Wilde, one of the finest wits of the nineteenth century, understood that “To disagree with three-fourths of the British public is one of the first requisites of sanity.”
EXAMPLE 3: Near the end of Herman Melville’s Moby-Dick, the white-whale-obsessed Captain Ahab shouts, “The ship! The hearse—the second hearse!… its wood could only be American!”
A Fascinating Anecdote or Story
EXAMPLE 1: The last time I pooped my pants I was no longer a baby, not a toddler, not even a school-age child; I was an adult on a beach in Hawaii. It was late at night, and my brother and I snuck down to the beach at our hotel. I peed against a wall at the end of the beach, as did my brother. While we were urinating, he said some joke—it wasn’t even that funny of a joke–but I laughed. The momentary release of that laugh, while also releasing my pee, sent a little bit of something out the other end.
EXAMPLE 2: There’s long been a legend–that no one has been able to prove or disprove–that on the morning of September 11th, amid the still-smoldering ashes of the Twin Towers, superstar Michael Jackson jumped into a rented car with legendary actors Marlon Brando and Elizabeth Taylor and escaped from New York.
EXAMPLE 3: If the only language you speak is English, walking around Tokyo is still nothing like walking around any number of European cities. It offers a particular alienation, exposure, and confusion. You may not speak a lick of Czech, but when you walk around Prague, you can look up the word “ice cream” and then keep an eye out for any sign that says “zmrzlina.” Even though the first half of the word seems impossibly devoid of vowels, you can still make sense of it because it utilizes the same alphabet as the English language. In Tokyo, though, you might as well be on an alien planet. Yes, you can still look up the word “ice cream” on your phone or in some book, but it’s a lot harder to look for a sign that says “アイスクリーム” when each of those symbols mean nothing to you.
A Rhetorical Question
EXAMPLE 1: Have you ever wondered what you would do if you could never utter another word?
EXAMPLE 2: When was the last time you told your parents you loved them?
EXAMPLE 3: What would you do if it was your son or daughter being caged by our president? Would you say, “Well, they shouldn’t have come here? It’s against the law to cross the border.”? Could you be as detached and indifferent as you are now about such a terrible thing happening to children at this very moment?
A Startling Fact or Statistic
EXAMPLE 1: One in every 17 people in the US has been infected with the novel coronavirus.
EXAMPLE 2: As far as we know, there are only two Northern White Rhinoceroses left on the planet. Unfortunately, they are both female. Though some scientists still hold out hope that they might be able to save the species with frozen embryos and sperm extracted from Northern White Rhinoceroses, there is a chance that we will witness the extinction of this animal in our lifetimes.
EXAMPLE 3: North Korea and Cuba are the only countries in which you cannot buy Coca-Cola.
A Funny Joke
EXAMPLE 1: Why didn’t the turkey cross the road? To prove he wasn’t chicken. Then why did the turkey eventually cross the road? To prove he wasn’t chicken.
EXAMPLE 2: If an amnesiac got Alzheimer’s would they forget they couldn’t remember anything?
EXAMPLE 3: A man and his wife name their son John Wayne. At the baby shower the wife’s best friend pulls her aside: “Maybe it’s not my place to say it, but I just can’t believe you’d name your boy after a racist, a misogynist, a homophobe.” “Oh Deb,” the wife says, patting her friend on the shoulder, “you should know us better than that. We’d never name him after that John Wayne. We’re naming him after John Wayne Gacy.”
A Bold or Provocative Claim
EXAMPLE 1: If God exists, he’s an asshole.
EXAMPLE 2: In 2020, you have probably heard the slogan “Black Lives Matter,” and you have probably heard the counter-slogan, “All Lives Matter,” but the truth is something much darker: “No Lives Matter.”
EXAMPLE 3: Every single person would murder someone under the right circumstances. No, you’re not any different; you would too.
A Poetic or Mysterious Flourish
EXAMPLE 1: Blood stains on a shirt can look like smeared strawberries.
EXAMPLE 2: Sometimes I forget that I’ve never been to Dublin.
EXAMPLE 3: He stands on a staircase behind his paramour. His hand, hovering in the void where tuxedo blends with room, holds a cigarette as though at any moment he might toss it like a pair of cards into the muck. His bowtie is exquisitely knotted, collar stiff and starched, boutonniere like a white heart newly blossomed on his breast, everything tailored to perfection. He has a strong jaw and a dimpled chin. He looks off into the distance, away from you and away from his lover, too, alluringly unattached. His eyes are lowered, melancholic but without a trace of self-pity.

It’s important to say here that though the hook is trying to catch the reader’s attention and draw them in, it will only work if it is actually meaningfully connected to your topic and thesis. In other words, the hook shouldn’t be random; it must be related to your argument in some way.

Connecting Bridge

In general, what the bridge does is explain the relation between your hook and your thesis. That’s why it’s called a bridge because it bridges the divide between your hook and your thesis statement. But that’s not the only thing it does. A good connecting bridge should usually provide the following three things:

The connection between the hook to the thesis statement
Some background information about the topic of the essay
An explanation of the relevance or importance of the topic

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