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Prof. Pepe - English 101 - Spring 2019: Home

The Assignment

.. construct a well- organized, well-developed classical argument essay in the style of a TED Talk appropriately incorporating outside research.
Situation/Prompt: Your university is holding its own TED conference and is asking for student submissions. You have been asked to write an argument paper in the style of a TED talk that makes a claim about an issue that is important to you, and which incorporates at least five outside sources to support your argument.

Directions: What ideas do you have that are worth sharing? Pick an issue that is close to your heart for this paper. Use a personal anecdote to open your “talk” and introduce your subject. This can take the form of a narrative about something that happened to you, or you can simply tell the story of how you became interested in your subject. The point of this is to hook your audience and get them invested in your topic. This section of your paper should be no longer than a page, and and should close with your thesis. Note that this paper needs to have an argument; that is, you should write with the aim to convince your audience to take some kind of action or to think differently about your topic.

The rest of your paper should proceed like a traditional argument. Focus on organization and transitions, and be mindful of the rhetorical strategies you are using. Be persuasive. Bring in outside sources to enhance your logos and ethos. You should use at least three direct quotations, but quote sparingly, and do not over-quote.

Be sure to incorporate at least five sources, two of which need to be scholarly.

Open with your anecdote, lead up to your thesis, then spend time providing background information. Next, you should cover the different points in your argument, being sure to utilize sound rhetorical strategies, and avoiding logical fallacies. Be sure to include a counter-argument, which you should convincingly refute. Your own voice/ideas should dominate your essay.

TED Talks

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