Writing with a Thesis / Edition 11

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Based on the principle that the ability to develop and support a thesis persuasively is of utmost importance for beginning writers, WRITING WITH A THESIS: A RHETORIC AND READER, 11th Edition, dispenses clear and practical writing advice. Sarah Skwire skillfully weaves humor into her advice and in the text's examples of good professional writing—for a uniquely useful text that remains enjoyable to read and to teach from. Best of all, the text's short, easy-to-read essays ensure that your class time will focus not on what the readings mean, but on what they mean for your students' writing.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781428290013
  • Publisher: Cengage Learning
  • Publication date: 1/1/2010
  • Edition description: Older Edition
  • Edition number: 11
  • Pages: 368
  • Product dimensions: 6.40 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Sarah Skwire attended Wesleyan University, where she received a BA (with honors) in English and was a member of the coed literary fraternity Alpha Delta Phi. She later received both her MA and PhD in English Literature from the University of Chicago. In addition to coauthoring WRITING WITH A THESIS (with her father, David Skwire), she has published a variety of creative work as well as articles on subjects such as chronically ill seventeenth-century women poets, medicine in "All's Well That Ends Well," the "German Princess" scandal of the seventeenth century, and "Buffy the Vampire Slayer." Before coming to Liberty Fund, Sarah taught at the College of DuPage in Glen Ellyn, Illinois, and at The Ohio State University. Her current research is on the subject of money and early modern poetry.

David Skwire taught for 25 years at Cuyahoga Community College and has degrees from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Cornell University. In addition to being the author or coauthor of all editions of WRITING WITH A THESIS, he also has coauthored STUDENTS BOOK OF COLLEGE ENGLISH (Longman), now in its tenth edition.

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Table of Contents

1. THE PERSUASIVE PRINCIPLE. General Subject. Limited Subject. Thesis. What a Thesis Isn't. A Thesis Is Not a Title. A Thesis Is Not an Announcement of the Subject. A Thesis Is Not a Statement of Absolute Fact. A Thesis Is Not the Whole Essay. What a Good Thesis Is. A Good Thesis Is Restricted. A Good Thesis Is Unified. A Good Thesis Is Specific. Exercises for Review. The Thesis at Work in the Paper. Two Ads on the Community Bulletin Board. Two "Personals." Two Sets of Directions. Two Thank-You Notes. Two Letters of Complaint. Two Replies to the Second Letter of Complaint. Visual Prompt: Tying It Together. Two "How I Spent My Summer Vacation" Essays. Two Freshman English Essays on a Literary Subject. "The Lottery," Shirley Jackson. Office Hours: Basic Tools for Writers. 2. NARRATION. Stress the Story. Remember That a Good Story Has Conflict. Use Plenty of Convincing Realistic Details. Play Fair. Writing Suggestions for Narration Themes. Readings. Visual Prompt: Stories. Student Essay: "Big Bully," Elizabeth Hiestand. "Free Tibet, Man!," Dinty W. Moore. What About Your Writing? (paragraph length). "Foul Shots," Rogelio R. Gomez. What About Your Writing? (getting even, settling scores). "The Perfect Picture," James Alexander Thom. What About Your Writing? (overwriting). "The Happiest Day of My Life," Michael T. Smith. What About Your Writing? (preposition at end of sentence). "Salvation," Langston Hughes. What About Your Writing? (nostalgia). "A Cultural Divorce," Elizabeth Wong. What About Your Writing? (specific details). "Sitting Duck," Thomas Froncek. What About Your Writing? (sentence fragments). Office Hours: Reading Around. 3. DESCRIPTION. Emotional Appeal. Try a Deliberately Unconventional Thesis. Show Your Powers of Observation by Stressing Specific Details. Use Specific Language. Stress the Psychological Impact of What You Describe. Organization. The Persuasive Principle. Writing Suggestions for Description Themes. Visual Prompt: Detail. Student Essay: "Master of Bad Management," Robynn Patrick. "Winstead's Best Burgers," Sarah Bryan Miller. What About Your Writing? (allusion). "I Was a Member of the Kung Fu Crew," Henry Han Xi Lau. What About Your Writing? (pronoun agreement). "My Glove: A Biography," Stefan Fatsis. What About Your Writing? (citation of authority). "All By Myself," Tom Reynolds. What About Your Writing? (comparisons). "Double Take," Melissa Lafsky. What About Your Writing? (hyperbole). "The Loneliness of Rose," Jon Katz. What About Your Writing? (unstated thesis). Office Hours: Notebooks: The Writer's Savings Account. 4. EXAMPLES. Are There Enough Examples to Support Your Thesis? Are the Examples Fairly Chosen? Have You Stuck to Your Thesis? Have You Arranged Your Examples to Produce the Greatest Impact? Writing Suggestions for Example Essays. Visual Prompt: Examples. Student Essay: "Broke and Bored: The Summer Job," Ashley Hall. "Always Settle Scores at Noon," Robert Fulford. What About Your Writing? (sentence length). "Couple Lies," Adair Lara. What About Your Writing? ("Why didn't I say that?"). "Fruitful Questions," James Sollisch. What About Your Writing? (rhetorical questions). "Chores," Debra Marquart. What About Your Writing? (intensifiers). "How to Speak of Animals," Umberto Eco. What About Your Writing? (parallelism). Office Hours: Of Course They Count. 5. PROCESS. Be Sure You Are Writing About a Process. Follow Strict Chronological Order. Before Describing the First Step of the Process, Indicate Any Special Ingredients or Equipment That Will Be Needed. Be Sure the Process Is Complete. Try to Anticipate Difficulties. If You Need to Handle Many Separate Steps, Arrange Them into Groups When Possible. Define Unfamiliar Terms. Avoid Highly Technical Processes. Avoid Subjects for Which Pictures Work Better Than Words. Writing Suggestions for Process Essays. Visual Prompt: Process. Student Essay: "How Not to Work Out," Max Greene. "Corn Bread with Character," Ronni Lundy. What About Your Writing? (introductions: how do I get my reader's attention?). "IT," Stephanie Pearl-McPhee. What About Your Writing? (repetition). "The Exploding Toilet and Other Embarrassments," Patrick Smith. What About Your Writing? (levels of usage). "Too Many Bananas," David R. Counts. What About Your Writing? (jargon). "The Spider and the Wasp," Alexander Petrunkevitch. What About Your Writing? (announcement of subject). Office Hours: Uses and Abuses of the Computer. 6. COMPARISON AND CONTRAST. Patterns. Block Pattern. Alternating Pattern. Which Pattern? Writing Suggestions for Comparison-and-Contrast Themes. Block Pattern. Visual Prompt: Compare/Contrast. Student Essay: "Coming in Last," Annette P. Grossman. Alternating Pattern. Student Essay: "Dads and Dads," Reid Morris. "Lassie Never Chases Rabbits," Kevin Cowherd. What About Your Writing? (conclusions). "My Real Car," Bailey White. What About Your Writing? (onomatopoeia). "Dearly Disconnected," Ian Frazier. What About Your Writing? (topicality). "Speaking of Writing," William Zinsser. What About Your Writing? (thesis at end of essay). "Love Thy Playstation, Love Thyself," Reihan Salam and Will Wilkinson. What About Your Writing? (humor). Office Hours: Revision: An Overview. 7. CAUSE AND EFFECT. Do Not Oversimplify Causes. Do Not Oversimplify Effects. Distinguish Between Direct and Indirect Causes and Effects. Distinguish Between Major and Minor Causes and Effects. Do Not Omit Links in a Chain of Causes and Effects. Play Fair. Writing Suggestions for Cause-and-Effect Papers. Visual Prompt: Cause/Effect. Student Essay: "A Few Short Words," Matthew Monroe. "Why We Crave Horror Movies," Stephen King. What About Your Writing? (sexism: he). "Beyond Chagrin," David Bradley. What About Your Writing? (elegant variation). "Cold Autumn," Steve Dublanica. What About Your Writing? (finding a subject: work). "Why I Quit the Company," Tomoyuki Iwashita. What About Your Writing? (qualifiers, rational tone). "The Best Years of My Life," Betty Rollin. What About Your Writing? (comma splice). Office Hours: Revision: Help from the Audience. 8. DIVISION AND CLASSIFICATION. Division. Classification. Use Only One Principle of Classification. Be Consistent. Make the Classifications as Complete as Possible. Acknowledge Any Complications. Follow the Persuasive Principle. Writing Suggestions for Classification Themes. Visual Prompt: Classification. Student Essay: "Bookworm," Gracie Jane Watson. "Mother-in-Law," Charlotte Latvala. What About Your Writing? (finding a subject: romantic highs and lows). "Take a Left Turn onto Nowhere Street," Anne Bernays. What About Your Writing? (titles). "The Seven Lesson Schoolteacher," John Taylor Gatto. What About Your Writing? (ironic quotation marks). "A Brush with Reality: Surprises in the Tube," David Bodanis. What About Your Writing? (specialties of the author). "Three Kinds of Discipline," John Holt. What About Your Writing? (alliteration). Office Hours: Revision: The Psychology of It All. 9. DEFINITION. A Definition Paper Can Compare and Contrast. A Definition Paper Can Classify. A Definition Paper Can Give Examples. A Definition Paper Can Trace a Process. A Definition Paper Can Study Cause-and-Effect Relationships. A Definition Paper Can Use Narration. Writing Suggestions for Definition Essays. Visual Prompt: Defining Terms. Student Essay: "Growing Up," Anonymous. "The Real Thing," Frankie Germany. What About Your Writing? (comic-book punctuation, exclamation points, etc.). "What Is Intelligence, Anyway?" Isaac Asimov. What About Your Writing? (simple thesis). "Cheap Thrills," Patricia Volk. What About Your Writing? (dialogue). "Sick in the Head," Jennifer Traig. What About Your Writing? (puns). "Catachresis," Patricia O'Hara. What About Your Writing? (having a gimmick). Office Hours: Deadlines. 10. ARGUMENTATION. Go Easy on Universals—Qualify When Appropriate. Give Consideration to Differing Opinions. Be Cautious with Abuse and Ridicule. Devote Most of Your Attention to Supporting Your View, Not Advocating It. Some Common Logical Fallacies. Writing Suggestions for Argumentation Essays. Visual Prompt: Argumentation. Student Essay: "Sing It When It Counts," Ben Ruggiero. "Thanksgiving's No Turkey," Robert W. Gardner. What About Your Writing? (taking sides for fun, mental exercise). "Distracting Miss Daisy," John Staddon. What About Your Writing? ("And" at the start of a sentence). "The Smiley-Face Approach," Albert Shanker. What About Your Writing? (passive voice). "Working at McDonalds," Amitai Etzioni. What About Your Writing? (attack on an orthodox view). "Appeasing the Gods, with Insurance," John Tierney. What About Your Writing? ("You"). "Black Athletes on Parade," Adolph Reed, Jr. What About Your Writing? (turning tables, beating opponents to the punch). "A Modest Proposal," Jonathan Swift. What About Your Writing? (irony). Office Hours: What About the Rest of Your Writing? Credits. Index.

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