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The "Cliff's Notes" for essays: everything you'll ever need to understand how to write the best possible essay on any topic.

What is required in an essay? How can an essay's quality be ensured? What makes the best possible essay on any given topic? What are some examples of pieces of an essay? What type of essay is appropriate for a given subject area?

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I. Intro
a. Attention-grabber/background on topic
b. Thesis
c. Reasons/Areas paper will cover to prove Thesis is believable
II. Body Paragraphs
a. Statement of Topic/Reason/Area
b. Evidence for Topic/Reason/Area
c. How evidence actually proves Topic/Reason/Area (Inference: what can the reader know?)
d. How Topic/Reason/Area actually proves all or part of Thesis
e. Transition into next point (describe the relationship between this point and the next: why is the paper switching topics?).
III. Counter-Paragraph (if required)
a. Statement of possible reason to DISAGREE.
b. Evidence provided for disagreement reason.
c. What evidence fails to address, lacks or ignores.
d. How paper's position addresses concern better, refutes evidence, or nullifies counter.
e. Transition into next point (describe the relationship between this point and the next: why is the paper switching topics?).
IV. Conclusion
a. Restatement of Thesis and Reasons in different words
b. Consequences for Thesis being true/believable (a suggestion as to "what might happen" as a result of what is written in the paper, or a challenge for the reader to "to action" or change behavior because of the writer's specific proposal, or a prediction about what might happen in the future, as a result of what the writer has discovered and shared)
c. Questions/ideas for further discovery or discussion, about topic (suggestions about future investigations or actions)
d. "Moral of The Story" (a new perspective, or outlook, on the topic; a "discovery" of how the information provided in the paper fits into a "bigger picture" of ideas, situation, circumstances, or events; or, provides a noteworthy incident, surprising statistic, apt quotation, or striking contrast that reinforces the main point of paper)

"When great minds meet, the end of good deeds is unforeseen."
"Without hope, unity is meaningless."
"Preparing for the worst always opens up doors for the best."
"Focus is crucial, but focusing on what is crucial is always more effective."
"Working hard may not pay off financially, but what it doesn't provide in monetary goods, it makes up for in character."
"Social networking is not just the latest craze amongst young people; communication is the life-blood of a community."
"When the road is tough, one must persist with great difficulty."
"Crack-zzzzatt! The fear in Ben Franklin that night of electricity discovery must have been shocking."
"Authenticity is greater than uniformity."

'Literary classics such as Huckleberry Finn, Catcher in The Rye and The Great Gatsby show difficulties with American life related to class, conflict and corruption; examples of this include Huck's relationship to Jim, Holden's relationship to "phonies," and Gatsby's rigid but hopeless nature, teaching us that in order to overcome society one must assert individuality.'

"The American Revolution set the foundation for all other American conflict and victory, by appealing to elitism, capitalizing on geographic distance to stir up support, and arousing internal, dissident interest from the common man."

"The elongated syllables, grossly misused personification, and abstract imagery reflect the author's intent to communicate that the character's perception of life is nothing more than a haphazard hallucination."

"Greed is borne of fear, and masks real intimacy in order to escape responsibility."

"Wisdom must precede charity for charity to be effective."

"Authenticity is greater than uniformity."

"Baseball is the truest 'American sport,' due to it complementing the American work ethic, its role in the creation of specifically American foods, and its ability to engage the complexity of the American mind."

If wanting to present the idea that Holden Caulfield has mental issues, one might present some of his "stranger" qualities in describing someone as if you're meeting them for the first time:
"One day, someone travels to a park, for no real reason but to go on a walk. But he stops when seeing a boy of young age there. He finds it strange; he has not been to a park like that in years. But he also feels sympathy, so he attempts talking to the boy. The boy curses at the traveler, calls him fake after knowing him for less than five minutes, and appears unable to stop rambling about some sister he is trying to keep from falling off horses—but this sister is nowhere to be found. Many people have felt affinity for literary characters, characters they could probably only describe as 'insane' in real life. This match of affinity and insanity reveals itself best in the person of Holden Caulfield."

Literary Analysis:
"Intuition is the clear conception of the whole at once." Johann Lavater might have been a theologian, but this quote makes an excellent guide into the importance of context in literary analysis. Without context, the literature becomes robbed of its importance, or even derided as worthless, as the reader simply shakes his head wondering why he has to read the literature in the first place. But there are treasures underneath the ground of written words, and context is the most effective shovel. Context provides for meaning in literature effectively by keeping the reader involved, providing necessary stylistic or cultural clues, and ruling out typical analytical fallacies such as "prooftexting." Combined, those effects truly give "the whole" of a literary piece "at once."
Historical Interpretation:
The United States may someday become the world's largest tragic hero. Wars have existed since the dawn of time, but none have been so nationally formative or culturally foundational as the American Revolution. The Revolution fostered plenty of benefits for hundreds of years, all related to the prosperity of the country it spawned. But "those who live by the sword shall die by the sword." The United States of America is and always will be in tenuous political circumstances due not to currently poor leadership or economic crisis, but instead due to precedents set by its own birth. The American Revolution set the foundation for all other American conflict, victory, and unfortunately defeat, by appealing to elitism, capitalizing on geographic distance to stir up support, and arousing internal, dissident interest from the common man.
In a dire situation, what becomes of a man? Does he become the best or worst of himself? In William Golding's novel, The Lord of the Flies, he presents a dire situation for young-aged school boys who come face to face with their true nature. Golding introduces a group of ...

Solution Summary

Examples and explanations of everything involved in basic essay writing for any topic, test, length, or subject area.