Hot to Write a thesis
Start with a question - then make the answer your thesis. Regardless of how complicated the subject is, almost any thesis can be constructed by answering a question. Question: "What are the benefits of using computers in a fourth-grade classroom?" Thesis: "Computers allow fourth graders an early advantage in technological and scientific education." Question: "Why is the Mississippi River so important in Mark Twain's Huckleberry Finn??" Thesis: "The river comes to symbolize both division and progress, as it separates our characters and country while still providing the best chance for Huck and Jim to get to know one another." Question: "Why do people seem to get angry at vegans, feminists, and other "morally righteous" subgroups?" Thesis: "Through careful sociological study, we've found that people naturally assume that "morally righteous" people look down on them as "inferior, " causing anger and conflict where there generally is none." Tailor your thesis to the type of paper you're writing. Not all essays persuade, and not all essays teach. The goals of your paper will help you find the best thesis. Analytical: Breaks down something to better examine and understand it. Ex. "This dynamic between different generations sparks much of the play’s tension, as age becomes a motive for the violence and unrest that rocks King Lear." Expository: Teaches or illuminates a point. Ex. "The explosion of 1800's philosophies like Positivism, Marxism, and Darwinism undermined and refuted Christianity to instead focus on the real, tangible world." Argumentative: Makes a claim, or backs up an opinion, to change other peoples' minds. Ex. "Without the steady hand and specific decisions of Barack Obama, America would never have recovered from the hole it entered in the early 2000's." Take a specific stance to make your thesis more powerful. You should address a single issue in great detail so that your points can be fully supported in the body of the paper. Consider the following examples: "While both sides fought the Civil War over the issue of slavery, the North fought for moral reasons while the South fought to preserve its own institutions." "The primary problem of the American steel industry is the lack of funds to renovate outdated plants and equipment." "Hemingway's stories helped create a new prose style by employing extensive dialogue, shorter sentences, and strong Anglo-Saxon words." Make the argument you've never seen before. The best theses find a novel, exciting way to approach the topic. They're fresh and dynamic, which makes your essay fresh and dynamic. "After the third and fourth time you see him beat himself, one finally realizes that Huck Finn is literature's first full-blown sadomasochist." "The advent of internet technology has rendered copy write laws irrelevant - everyone can and should get writing, movies, art, and music for free." "Though they have served admirably for the past two centuries, recent research shows that America needs to ditch the two-party system, and quickly." Ensure your thesis is provable. Do not come up with your thesis and then look it up later. The thesis is the end point of your research, not the beginning. You need to use a thesis you can actually back up with evidence. Good Theses Examples: "By owning up to the impossible contradictions, embracing them and questioning them, Blake forges his own faith, and is stronger for it. Ultimately, the only way for his poems to have faith is to temporarily lose it." "According to its well-documented beliefs and philosophies, an existential society with no notion of either past or future cannot help but become stagnant." "By reading “Ode to a Nightingale” through a modern deconstructionist lens, we can see how Keats viewed poetry as shifting and subjective, not some rigid form." Bad Theses Examples: "The wrong people won the American Revolution." While striking and unique, who is "right" and who is "wrong" is exceptionally hard to prove, and very subjective. "The theory of genetic inheritance is the binding theory of every human interaction." Too complicated and overzealous. The scope of "every human interaction" is just too big "Paul Harding's novel Tinkers is ultimately a cry for help from a clearly depressed author." Unless you interviewed Harding extensively, or had a lot of real-life sources, you have no way of proving what is fact and what is fiction."
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