Argument and Persuasion Essay
There are many serious problems facing America today: unemployment, terrorism, racism, immigration, homelessness, healthcare availability and affordability, environmental concerns, housing crisis, to name a few. While you may not choose to “Occupy Wall Street” to protest any number of concerns, this essay provides a forum for you to cease being what Nixon termed “the silent majority,” and, instead, speak up. Choose a problem that America faces today and that you have a personal, vested interest solving. Your argument and persuasion essay will, of course, explain the nature of the problem, but you must also take a position, persuade the audience of the seriousness of the problem, and perhaps even propose a solution.
You must carefully consider your topic, learn a great deal about both sides of your chosen issue, narrow the topic, and choose a position on your topic. You can and should conduct primary research on your topic, but you are also required to conduct specific secondary research. Most of you are quite familiar with Internet resources and understand the credibility problem inherent in most Internet sources, so we will not conduct any secondary research on the Internet. Instead, you must locate three sources through Galileo that help to support your argument. You must also locate two additional sources through Galileo that disagree with your position. Any borrowed or quoted ideas or words must be cited both in-text and on the Works Cited page. We will work on MLA citation in class, but this procedure is also explained in your Harbrace text.
Your three-five page essay will include an introduction that respectfully acknowledges the opposition, per Rogerian strategy, and a carefully articulated, analytical thesis statement. This is your paper and your chance to speak up, so your thoughts and words will predominate your essay. Your position will be carefully constructed primarily of your own thinking (with supporting examples and explanation), but will also include the support of outside experts.
As always, your well-crafted essay will incorporate aspects of the strategies previously studied in this course (description, exemplification, definition, process analysis, compare-contrast, division-classification), will be carefully and beautifully written, and will comply with the requirements of MLA. Have fun!