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How to write a persuasive essay

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Claudine Remmey

on 22 February 2011

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Transcript of How to write a persuasive essay

How to write a persuasive essay 1. Take the time to pre-write and organize your thoughts. The best way to pre-write for this type of essay is in a linear way.
1. argument or point
a. supporting detail
b. persuasive technique
2. Create a catchy lead sentence by starting with an anecdote, a statistic or a question other than the one in the stem. 3. Then organize your 1st paragraph like an inverted pyramid, general info. at the top and a specific thesis at the bottom. 4. Use your argument or main point as a topic sentence. 5. After the topic sentence, set up your supporting detail. 6. After the supporting detail, set up your persuasive technique. 7. If you haven't noticed yet, steps 4-6 come directly from your pre-write. 8. Close your persuasive essay by stating the gist of your argument, NOT repeating your arguments in a list. After stating the gist of your argument, include one last persuasive device like a rhetorical question to make the reader really think about what you said. If you do not use a persuasive device, end with a confident statement. Persuasive Devices Persuasive devices or elements are important b/c they are compositional risks which always earn you more points if done correctly. Some persuasive techniques appeal to one's logical side and some appeal to one's emotional side.
1. COMPARE & CONTRAST: This technique makes you think the writer is being objective by presenting both sides. He is letting the reader come to a decision about the issue. This can be a problem if the writer limits the facts for one side thereby manipulating the reader despite the presentation.
2. PERSONAL EXAMPLE: This technique makes you feel like you are just like the person presenting the argument. They can relate to you, understand you, and sympathize with you. They are on your side.
3. PLAIN FOLKS or ELITIST: These techniques are designed to appeal to the common person or to those with high economic status. If you feel like you are just like the person 4. NAME-CALLING: This strategy makes you feel like the writer is telling you like it presenting the argument, then someone understands you. Therefore that writer is on your side.
5. RHETORICAL QUESTION: This strategy makes you think the writer is being objective by presenting you with a question, not just telling you what to do. He is letting the reader make their own decision. It also helps to clarify or remind you of the writer’s point of view.
6. SCIENTIFIC DATA: This strategy impresses the reader because it makes them feel as if they are getting accurate information from the experts. After all, they are experts; they can’t be wrong!
7. STATISTICS: This technique uses numbers to shock or scare people. Numbers also make the argument seem factual. No one is going to dispute an argument about numbers. After all, how many people are going to look up the exact amount of people that have died in earthquakes during the years 1871-1971?
8. TESTIMONIAL: This picture and/or statement from a famous living person endorsing the advertised product, person or idea only works if the viewer / reader respects the person giving the testimonial. If that person is respected, the reader will value the opinion of the famous person therefore giving credence to the product, person, or idea.
9. TRANSFER: By associating an idea or product with something people view with pride (U.S. flag, Statue of Liberty, Abraham Lincoln) people will feel an emotional attachment thereby being more receptive to agreeing with the idea or purchasing the product. "THESE are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands by it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman."
~~Thomas Paine "It has been the folly of Britain to suppose herself more powerful than she really is..."
~~Thomas Paine "As a nation she is the poorest in Europe; for were the whole kingdom, and all that is in it, to be put up for sale like the estate of a bankrupt..."
~~Thomas Paine "...yet this thoughtless wretch must go to war, and with the avowed design, too, of making us beasts of burden, to support her in riot and debauchery..." ~~Thomas Paine
(technique is name-calling) "A lasting independent peace is my wish, end and aim; and to accomplish that, I pray God the Americans may never be defeated, and I trust while they have good officers, and are well commanded, and willing to be commanded, that they NEVER WILL BE."
~~Thomas Paine
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