research arguments

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research arguments

  • Thesis: The claim of the macroargument. Every article, book, or dissertation will be easier to write and prove if it has a clearly stated thesis. A clearly stated thesis is a single, simple or complex, declarative statement that totally captures what you want to prove.
    • A good thesis contains no “ands” or “buts.” Thus it is not a compound sentence.
    • A good thesis boldly declares your claim. Although sentences that are interrogatives or even imperatives can serve many of the functions of a thesis, writing is easier with a declarative sentence. The exception is some social science research in which you want a guiding research question to serve this purpose. If so, make certain it has the other characteristics of this thesis.
    • A good thesis leaves nothing beyond it that you want to discuss. If there is material extraneous to the thesis that you wish to discuss, you do not yet have a good thesis or you need to reconsider including the material.
  • Issue: a point of doubt. An issue results from the breaking down of a thesis in an analytic move. Any thesis will have vulnerable points that may be the sources of doubt. You job as a scholar is to understand the issues that are contained in your thesis.
    • Stock Issues: a sort of formula that can be learned and used to reveal the issues that may arise in a particular type of thesis. We learn for example that in a statistical inference reliability and validity are potential issues.
    • Potential Issues: an issue that could be raised in the case of your particular thesis. Potential issues can come from the use of stock issues, or from your reading of the literature, or from your understanding of the empirical complex of the thesis.
    • Actual Issues: the issues that actually are points of dispute on a research thesis. Thus, potential issues have become actual issues as the debate has ensued.

A good thesis does multiple work. When you have finished your work you should be able to see this influence:

Research arguments

Remember: the world is not black-and-white. There are always two sides of the coin. So, even if you’re pretty sure in your claim, and the majority of people tend to support it, consider the arguments of the opposing side. Only then your argumentative paper will be graded respectively high.

  • In-depth research
  • Gathering of information
  • Picking the most credible and up-to-date sources
  • Writing a draft
  • Writing compare and contrast essay itself
  • Editing
  • Revising (at least twice)

Research arguments
The thesis statement of an argumentative essay acts as a brief, explicit guide for your reader. It is a one or two sentence summary of the point that you’re trying to make in your paper and acts as the focus around which you will organize your entire essay, so it’s important to get that statement nailed early on.
Diagram Explained:

These formulas share two characteristics all thesis statements should have: they state an argument and they reveal how you will make that argument. They are not specific enough, however, and require more work.

  • Unspecific thesis: “Eleanor Roosevelt was a strong leader as First Lady.” This thesis lacks an argument. Why was Eleanor Roosevelt a strong leader?
  • Specific thesis: “Eleanor Roosevelt recreated the role of the First Lady by her active political leadership in the Democratic Party, by lobbying for national legislation, and by fostering women’s leadership in the Democratic Party.” The second thesis has an argument: Eleanor Roosevelt “recreated” the position of First Lady, and a three-part structure with which to demonstrate just how she remade the job.
  • Unspecific thesis: “At the end of the nineteenth century French women lawyers experienced difficulty when they attempted to enter the legal profession.” No historian could argue with this general statement and uninteresting thesis.
  • Specific thesis: “At the end of the nineteenth century French women lawyers experienced misogynist attacks from male lawyers when they attempted to enter the legal profession because male lawyers wanted to keep women out of judgeships.” This thesis statement asserts that French male lawyers attacked French women lawyers because they feared women as judges, an intriguing and controversial point.

Recall any text you wrote, in or outside of school. Think not only of school papers, but also of letters to relatives and friends, e-mails, shopping lists, online postings, and so on. Consider the following questions.
Because of this emphasis on logical proofs, you may be less familiar with the kinds of pathetic and ethical proofs available to you. Pathetic appeals, or appeals to emotions of the audience were considered by ancient rhetoricians as important as logical proofs. Yet, writers are sometimes not easily convinced to use pathetic appeals in their writing. As modern rhetoricians and authors of the influential book Classical Rhetoric for the Modern Student (1998), Edward P.J. Corbett and Robert Connors said, “People are rather sheepish about acknowledging that their opinions can be affected by their emotions” (86). According to Corbett, many of us think that there may be something wrong about using emotions in argument. But, I agree with Corbett and Connors, pathetic proofs are not only admissible in argument, but necessary (86-89). The most basic way of evoking appropriate emotional responses in your audience, according to Corbett, is the use of vivid descriptions (94).


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