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Persuasive Essay Structure

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Kai Liu

on 6 February 2014

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Transcript of Persuasive Essay Structure

Clear Thesis at the End
Persuasive Essay Structure
Judy Liu, Michelle Liu, Luke Liu
Marina Fedorova, Alisha Wong, David Han

Characteristics of the Persuasive Essay
What is the purpose of the persuasive essay?

• To persuade the reader to accept/adopt the writer’s perspective on a topic

How to write a persuasive essay?
Introductory Paragraph
Grab the reader’s attention by using a “hook.”
Give an overview of the argument.
Close with a thesis statement that reveals the position to be argued.
Analysis of Example Essay : Jurassic Conservation?
Title = allusion to Jurassic Park

Paragraph 1: The writer introduces the topic by providing relevant background information using an anecdote to grab the reader’s attention

Paragraph 2: The writer continues to build the essay with facts, but subtly pushes his opinions.

Concrete Evidence
Addressing Alternate Viewpoints
stating facts
giving logical
quoting experts
Body Paragraphs
Each body paragraph should focus on one piece of evidence.
Within each paragraph, provide sufficient supporting detail.
Justify your opinions, remember that if you don't provide evidence, your argument might not be as persuasive.
When you can, use facts as your evidence.
Opposing View Paragraph
Describe and then refute the key points of the opposing view.
Concluding Paragraph
Restate and reinforce the thesis and supporting evidence.
Encourage the reader to adopt the position or take action.
Closing sentence can be a dramatic plea
a prediction that implies urgent action is needed
a question that provokes readers to think seriously about the issue
a recommendation that gives readers specific ideas on what they can do.
Try to sound authoritative on your subject
For example, don't just say:
"Dolphins are very smart animals. They are widely recognized as being incredibly smart."
Instead, say:
"Dolphins are very smart animals. Multiple studies found that dolphins worked in tandem with humans to catch prey. Very few, if any, species, have developed mutually symbiotic relationships with humans."
"Some opponents of gay marriage use the Bible as evidence that marriage is exclusively defined between a man and a woman. But the Bible also sanctions rape (Judges 21:10-24), gender inequity (Leviticus 27:1-7), and outsized punishments for small acts (Deuteronomy 25:11-12). How do we square biblical theory with our modern notions of ethics? If the Bible is a civic guide, why aren't we also sanctioning rape, gender inequality, and outsized punishments for small acts?"

The rate of crashes for 16-year-old drivers is almost 10 times the rate for older drivers.
For example, instead of saying
"That's why I think that Abraham Lincoln was the best American President in the 19th century,"
"That's why Abraham Lincoln was the best American President in the 19th century."
The reader already know that if you write about Lincoln being the best President, you also believe it. Saying "I think" sounds like you're hedging and makes you sound less authoritative.
"Cloning is a brand-new chapter in the history of mankind, but it has nothing, absolutely nothing, to do with conservation" (paragraph 12)
How to make a compelling argument?
Place your thesis strategically.
• Consider the nature of your topic
• Consider the reaction of your reader
• May not necessarily be placed in the introduction

Support your argument with evidence.
• cite credible sources (“Works Cited” list for English)

Recognize and refute alternative viewpoints.
• Further strengthens your argument

• Formal or third person → impersonal; therefore, rational
• Informal or first person → persuasive technique, connect with the reader
• There is flexibility in terms of language and structure
• Tone
o Definition: the attitude of the author towards the reader, audience, or subject matter of a literary work
o Write in a respectful tone

How is persuasion distinct from other styles of writing?

It explores a
controversial issue
• Aims to
the reader

is recommended

"Cloning endangered species is a classic case of lazy science that will spare us all the bother of preventing extinction. However much its supporters may protest that cloning will only be used to complement conservation…" (paragraph 7)
“The prospect of human cloning causes us grave misgivings,” writes Ian Wilmut, co-cloner with Keith Campbell in 1996 of the famous sheep, Dolly, in his book The Second Creation: Dolly and the Ages of Biological Control.” (Paragraph 10)
Paragraph 3: The tone becomes more informal and opinionated.

Paragraph 4: Uses emotion as a tool to convince the reader.

Paragraph 5: Includes a
concession statement
. Sympathizes with the opposite side.

Paragraph 6 & 7: Writer goes back to original side.

Paragraph 8: Author predicts what might happen if the problem isn't addressed.

Paragraph 9: Author carefully restates and clarifies his opinion.

Paragraph 10 &11: Author references other sources to support his point.
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