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The Persuasive Essay
Persuasive Writing Persuasive writing is writing that tries to convince a reader to do something or to believe what you believe about a certain topic. It takes a position for or against something.
Persuasive Writing can be used to… Purpose • Support a cause • Urge people to action • Make a change • Prove something wrong Persuasive Statement • “Please support my football team by buying discount coupons. ” • “Vote for Sarah!” • “The principal should let us wear hats. ” • “Cell phones don’t cause brain cancer. ”
A persuasive essay convinces readers to agree with the writer’s opinion • The lead/hook captures the reader’s attention • The thesis states the writer’s assertion (belief) about the topic • The supporting arguments (logos, pathos, ethos) convince the reader that thesis is correct • Optional counter arguments respond to reader concerns and objections • The conclusion restates thesis (comes back to the point)
Logos An attempt to persuade the audience (or reader) through sound reasoning. Reliable evidence, e. g. facts, definitions, statistics and other data that appeals to the logic and intelligence of the audience.
Pathos An appeal to the emotions of the reader or audience. Attempt to induce a particular state of mind in e. g. anger, understanding, sympathy, tolerance Taps into the sentiment or feelings of the audience or readership.
Ethos Appeal of the speaker or writer in terms of his / her credibility and experience Presents, directly or indirectly, a profile that sets a stamp of authority on the words used to persuade.
Where am I going? ESSAY An essay without a thesis statement is like a car without a driver
What is a thesis statement? • A thesis statement is a sentence used in an essay that serves as the guide for the essay and directly answers the question or task asked of you. • A thesis statement express the Thi main idea of your paper. s on will the be t too est, !
Incorrect Option A One person I admire is Babe Ruth, who played baseball from 1914 until 1935. Although this does address the writing prompt, this is a factual statement. A thesis statement should be something you can argue for or against.
Correct! Great Job! Option B One person I admire is Babe Ruth, the greatest baseball player of all time. This statement addresses the prompt, and presents and opinion that can be argued.
Lead / Hook Grab the Reader’s Attention Anecdote (narrative vignette) I walked proudly through the hallways of AMS, my new blue mohawk glistening magnificently in the florescent lighting of the hallway, but then I saw Mr. Caruthers. I felt the wax in my hair start to melt. Question Do schools have the right to tell kids how to dress? Hyperbole For the past 300 years in this country, schools have been crushing the artistic freedom of students with oppressive dress codes! Setting At Centerville Middle School, a controversy is brewing. Walk down the hallways, and amidst a tranquil sea of khaki pants and navy blue polo shirts, the blades of a fuchsia mohawk cut through the peaceful learning environment. Alliterative Phrase Timeless. Tasteful. Tried and true. The traditional school uniform is the foundation of a true learning environment. Quotation “Give me liberty or give me death. ”
Text Structure of a Persuasive Essay
Strategies for Conclusions • Call to Action • Ask the reader to do something or to make something happen “I challenge you to watch what you eat and to avoid fast food. ” • Provide a solution • Provide an answer to the problem “Fast food doesn’t have to be “bad food. ” Make better choices like salads, fruit and low fat treats. ” • Make a Prediction • Explain what might be the consequences of action or inaction “If people continue to eat lots of fast food, they put their health at risk. If kids don’t make better choices today, they won’t grow into healthy adults. ” Walsh Publishing Co. 2009
Writing Your Persuasive Essay Drafting Support with: n facts n statistics n examples n quotations n anecdotes
Remember: • Start with a hook and transition to the topic of exit exams. • Do not use ‘you’ or ‘I. ’ • Do not use contractions. • Do not use slang words. • Watch your tone. • Use logical reasons for support.