A 6-8 page essay exploring in-depth a question raised by your reading during the
course.(Die Raube (the robber by Schiller))
I need you come up with a queston tomorrow before 8am and an outline before wednesday
There are two basic kinds of academic essays that you can write. The kind most often
assigned by college professors requires that you propose, develop, and prove a thesis. In contrast,
I would like you to write an essay that explores a question. If the first kind is more rhetorical, in
that you must persuade readers of a specific interpretation of the text to which you have already
come, the second is more genuinely philosophical, in that you are engaging readers in an open
dialectical exploration of a burning question. We will work on developing your ability to hit
upon a question that is both interesting and addressable. For the first assignment, you will be
given a choice of questions to explore. For the second and third paragraphs, you will articulate a
question of your own.
Before writing, reread the text and carefully analyze the language of passages that bear
upon this question. Organize your thought process as you work through the difficult issues that
the question opens up. It often helps to marshal your ideas and thoughts with notes on paper.
Then you can organize them into an organized structure (an outline, even) that will guide you
through constructing your paragraph.
To craft your paragraph, open with a topic sentence that introduces the following
discussion in a clear but compelling way. In the body of the paragraph, demonstrate your
analysis of the problem and your careful reading of a key passage of the text. Use evidence from
the text to support your claims, and make your logical deductions based on this evidence clear
and cogent. Although you are exploring a question rather than asserting a thesis, your paragraph
should be intellectually rigorous, clearly organized, and carefully argued. In conclusion, reflect
on what you have learned in the process and what remains to discover. You may or may not end
up with a fully satisfactory and final answer to your initial question, but your paragraph should
clearly and engagingly demonstrate the interesting journey of your critical thinking.
As with all academic essays, you should assume that you are writing to an audience who
is familiar with the material. You should use quotations only when you plan to analyze the
specific language of the passage cited; do not quote merely to remind readers of what happened.
Do not summarize the story of the text: this is not a book report. Nor is it a research paper: you
do not need to do any background reading of secondary sources. I am more interested in your
own personal engagement with the work and the critical thinking involved in your own close
reading of the text. If you insist on consulting secondary literature, be sure to cite your sources.
This paragraph should not be longer than 1 page (12 pt. font, double spaced with 1"
margins). All sources must be documented fully and follow the MLA guidelines. Late work will
be penalized by a third of a grade (e.g., from a C to a C-) for each day that it is late. I will
however grant extensions, if you have an excellent reason and make your request at least 24
hours in advance.
If you have any questions about the structure or content of this assignment, I am happy to
meet with you and discuss your essay project during office hours or by appointment. We can
chat about your ideas, but I cannot read and comment on a draft of your paragraph. Happy
|Due By (Pacific Time)||12/08/2013 11:00 am|
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