Essay 1: An Essay of Recall
Select one of the topics from p. 23 of the Bedford Guide and develop a 1 ½-3 page essay (a minimum of 750 words) in which you present both the event and its significance to you.
First brainstorm or freewrite to generate the points that you may want to include. Then select what you think are the most important details, examples, etc. to develop. Next put the events in order.
Your first draft may be only a chronology of the events themselves, but make sure that you include all the necessary information (See the Reporter's Questions on p. 24).
After you have finished this draft, think about why this event is important to you: why is this experience memorable? This point must be made clear to the readers. It also is the key to what details and examples you finally include (and exclude) and how you include them. All of your material should lead up to and support your main point.
Look at the "Revision Checklist" questions on p. 26 as a guide for evaluating your final draft before you turn it in.
Essay 2: An Essay of Analysis
The opinion/editorial page of a newspaper, an article of analysis in a newspaper, and an editorial commentary in a magazine such as Time or Newsweek all have the same goal: to express the point of view of the author on some topic. Select one article of opinion from a recent publication to analyze for its use of evidence, logical apparel, and emotion appeal. Your overall purpose is to decide whether or not you think that the author supports his/her main point clearly, effectively, and honestly.
Start with a paragraph of introduction which
- gives basic information about the article—its author if given, title, and the publication in which it appears
- states the main point of the author
- states your purpose in this essat
Now develop a paragraph that identifies and types the evidence used by the author. Give specific examples.
Paragraph three should analyze the logical appeal of the author and especially note any use of the fallacies.
Paragraph 4 should examine the emotional appeal of the essay. How does the author portray him/herself? Are there examples or facts or quotes included to appeal to the emotions of the reader? Most importantly, is the emotional level appropriate, or does the author become sentimental?
In the concluding paragraph present your evaluation of the merits of the piece you have chosen.
Remember that you can support your claims about this article only with clear and specific examples.