Writing with a Thesis (with 2009 MLA Update Card)

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  • Edition: 10th
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2009-05-13
  • Publisher: Wadsworth Publishing
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WRITING WITH A THESIS: A RHETORIC AND READER is based on the persuasive principle-the development and support of a thesis in order to persuade a reader, which is exactly the skill beginning writers in freshman composition just like you need to develop. The book dispenses clear and practical writing advice in a clear and practical way. Leavened with lots of good humor-in both its advice and in its examples of good professional writing-WRITING WITH A THESIS is renowned for being useful and enjoyable to read. Nineteen of the book's 50 professional essays are new to this edition and 3 of 10 student essays are also new, providing fresh voices, variety, and relevance. Almost all of the essays are short and easy to read so that class time can be devoted not to what the readings mean, but to what they mean for your writing. Students receive the most up-to-date information on MLA documentation with the enclosed tri-fold card providing NEW 2009 MLA Handbook formats.

Table of Contents

The Persuasive Principle
General Subject
Limited Subject
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
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
Two "How I Spent My Summer Vacation" Essays
Two Freshman English Essays on a Literary Subject
"The Lottery"
Office Hours: Basic Tools for Writers
Stress the Story
Remember That a Good Story Has Conflict
Use Plenty of Convincing Realistic Details
Play Fair
Writing Suggestions for Narration Themes
Student Essay: "Big Bully"
"Computer Games Anonymous"
What About Your Writing? (Paragraph Length)
"Foul Shots"
What About Your Writing? (Getting Even, Settling Scores).
"Perfect Picture"
What About Your Writing? (Overwriting)
What About Your Writing? (Nostalgia)
"A Cultural Divorce"
What About Your Writing? (Specific Details).
"Sitting Duck"
What About Your Writing? (Sentence Fragments)
Office Hours: Reading Around
Emotional Appeal
Try a Deliberately Unconventional Thesis
Show Your Powers of Observation by Stressing Specific
Use Specific Language
Stress the Psychological Impact of What You Describe
Persuasive Principle
Writing Suggestions for Description Themes.
Student Essay: "Master of Bad Management"
"Winstead's Best Burgers"
What About Your Writing? (Allusion)
"I Was a Member of the Kung Fu Crew"
What About Your Writing? (Pronoun Agreement)
"A Promise in a Lunch Pail"
What About Your Writing? (Finding a Subject: Family Life).
"All by Myself"
What About Your Writing? (Comparisons).
"The Loneliness of Rose"
What About Your Writing? (Unstated Thesis)
"Good Used Cars"
What About Your Writing? (Stream-of-consciousness Writing)
Office Hours: Notebooks: The Writer's Savings Account
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
Student Essay: "Commuter Rail"
"Couple Lies"
What About Your Writing? ("Why didn't I say that?")
"Fruitful Questions"
What About Your Writing? (Rhetorical Questions)
"Why Don't We Complain"
What About Your Writing? ("And" at the Start of a Sentence)
"How to Speak of Animals"
What About Your Writing? (Parallelism)
"As Google Goes, So Goes the Nation"
What About Your Writing? (Preposition at End of Sentence)
Office Hours: Of Course They Count
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
Student Essay: "No Bows on the Butt: Choosing Your Wedding Gown"
"Corn Bread with Character"
What About Your Writing? (Introductions: How Do I Get My Reader's Attention?)
"How to Write a Personal Letter"
What About Your Writing? (Using "You")
What About Your Writing? (Repetition)
"My Crowd"
What About Your Writing? (Elegant Variation)
"The Spider and the Wasp"
What About Your Writing? (Announcement of Subject)
Office Hours: Uses and Abuses of the Computer
Comparison and Contrast. Patterns
Block Patterns
Alternating Pattern
Which Pattern?
Writing Suggestions for Comparison-and-Contrast Themes.
Student Essay: "Coming in Last"
Student Essay: "Chick Movies and Guy Movies"
"Lassie Never Chases Rabbits"
What About Your Writing? (Conclusions)
"My Real Car"
What About Your Writing? (Onomatopoeia)
"A Good Scythe"
What About Your Writing? (Intensifiers: Really, Very)
"Speaking of Writing"
What About Your Writing? (Thesis at End of Essay)
"Love thy PlayStation, Love Thyself"
What About Your Writing? (Humor)
Office Hours: Revision: An Overview
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
Student Essay: "A Few Short Words"
"Why We Crave Horror Movies"
What About Your Writing? (Sexism: He)
"Why I Quit the Company"
What About Your Writing? (Qualifiers, Rational Tone).
"Bring Back Stinks and Bangs"
What About Your Writing? (Hyperbole)
"The Best Years of My Life"
What About Your Writing? (Comma Splice)
"Thinking Like a Mountain"
What About Your Writing? (Levels of Usage)
Office Hours: Revision: Help from the Audience
Division and 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.
Student Essay: "Earthquakers"
What About Your Writing? (Finding a Subject: Romantic Highs and Lows)
"Take a Left Turn onto Nowhere Street"
What About Your Writing? (Titles)
Showing Off?"
What About Your Writing? (Puns)
"A Brush with Reality: Surprises in the Tube"
What About Your Writing? (Specialities of the Author)
"Three Kinds of Discipline"
What About Your Writing? (Alliteration)
Office Hours: Revision: The Psychology of It All
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
Student Essay: "Growing Up"
"The Real Thing"
What About Your Writing? (Comic Book Punctuation, Exclamation Points, etc.)
"What Is Intelligence, Anyway?"
What About Your Writing? (Simple Thesis)
"Feast for the Soul"
What About Your Writing? (Citation of Authority)
"Cheap Thrills"
What About Your Writing? (Dialogue)
"Gross Domestic Nonsense"
What About Your Writing? (Topicality)
Office Hours: Deadlines
Go Easy on Universals--Qualify When Appropriate
Give Consideration to Differing Opinions
Be Cautious with Abuse and Ridicule
Devote Most of Your Attention Toward Supporting Your View, Not Advocating It
Some Common Logical Fallacies
Writing Suggestions for Argumentation Essays
Student Essay: "Sing It When It Counts"
"Thanksgiving's No Turkey"
What About Your Writing? (Taking Sides for Fun, Mental Exercise)
"Dear Mom, Clear My Calendar"
What About Your Writing? (Ironic Quotation Marks)
"The Smiley-Face Approach"
What About Your Writing? (Passive Voice)
"Old Folks at Home"
What About Your Writing? (Sentence Length)
"Working at McDonalds"
What About Your Writing? (Attack on an Orthodox View)
"Black Athletes on Parade"
What About Your Writing? (Turning Tables, Beating Opponents to the Punch)
"A Modest Proposal"
What About Your Writing? (Irony)
Office Hours: What About the Rest of Your Writing?
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