We think of definition as a dictionary definition

| September 11, 2018

Second Formal Essay Assignment—Defining SuccessContextWe think of definition as a dictionary definition, but it is often broader and more subtle than that. Ask a person to define goodness, and he or she might give you a dictionary definition, or a definition based on an antonym (“goodness means opposing evil or the absence of evil”). However, in order to get at how a person really defines the term, you might have to do some digging or “reading” between the lines. For example, I could say that I define goodness as a fight against evil, but my definition uses two general words that need further explanation. Perhaps I mean that in order to be good, one has to combat the forces that cause human poverty; my moral definition of good and evil could be contained within this realm of material, and not include a host of other traditional moral codes.“Success” is difficult to define as well. We are reading four essays—written by Mantsios, Ehrenreich, Murray, and Davidson—that talk about how the myth of equal opportunity has changed in the United States. Beneath their apparent topics, however—if one really analyzes their essays—are four different definitions of success.Here are four ways of typically defining words: attempting to state the essence of the word, setting boundaries on how broadly the word can be defined, using examples, and employing the word’s etymology to get a sense of how older meanings affect our understanding of the word today.Essay AssignmentWrite an essay, four to five pages long, which accomplishes the followingfour tasks. (You do not need to follow a particular order or structure—just make certain that the essay accomplishes these four things.)Write a definition of how American society looks at the idea success.Next, take theessays assigned fromRereading America, and, using evidence from the essays you choose, explain to your reader how TWO of the following authors, Mantsios, Ehrenreich, Murray, or Davidson, defines success.Juxtapose your idea of success with each writer’s idea of success; that is, cite and comment on the most important one or two differences between each author’s ideas and your own ideas about success, and comment on why this difference (or differences) is (are) important.Tell us what you think success is. Be specific, and develop your definition with examples.Avoid generalities in your definition. Explain why you have embraced this definition of successThesis: Your thesis should follow something like the following format.While [essay authors’ names] believes that success is primarily defined as [ ], I believe that success finds its foundation in [ ].Advice:Introductions: Begin your essay with an introductory section that engages the reader in the topic. , Give your reader something to think about. Indicate briefly which essays fromRereading America you will be analyzing. End with the thesis statementDevelopmental Paragraphs: Use textual evidence in your essay as you discuss the essays of the writers you have chosen. When you come to you own definition of success, it would be wise to consider referring to ideas from the two essays you have chosen to show to what degree the essays have affected your own definition.Conclusion: Consider using your conclusion to bring a sense of closure to your essay by referring back to your introduction. One way of doing this is by confessing that you don’t have the subject of success completely figured out yet, and expressing to the reader your doubts. These doubts and the reader’s questions maybe alignment, and thus you may be giving the reader something to think about.Essays from Rereading America: In order to do well on the essay, you will need to demonstrate a thorough understanding of the essay you have chosen.Please Include Specific QuotesPlease make sure the essay is grammatically correctCollege Level Essay

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