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Essay Requirements:Enthymeme-driven (include an enthymeme at the end of your introduction and use your enthymeme to map out your supporting points as you develop your argument)Refer to AT LEAST two of the articles/essays we have read (especially the three mentioned above). You must include in-text citations and a works cited page for these sources (formatted in MLA style).Reading 1:https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2008/…Reading 2:https://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/10/opinion/sunday/…Reading 3: (see attached file)Reading 4: (see attached file)Include at least one counterargumentUse evidence (personal examples, observations, cultural objects—like a film, novel, or song—or hypothetical examples) to support your argumentMinimum 4 pages long (maximum 5 pages) not including the works cited page.Please continue reading for more details on the enthymeme and how to use it to develop your argument.What is an enthymeme?An enthymeme is a Greek term that is used by Aristotle in his writings on rhetoric. The translation of the term is “in the heart.” This might not be the meaning you would expect for a term so heavily used in argumentation. Too often we think of argumentation as a heated debate over who’s right and who’s wrong; or we think of persuasion, the art of manipulation. Neither of these associations quite match what we’re aiming for. “In the heart” reminds us that argumentation must reach not just the intellect, but also the heart. It refers to the common ground that needs to be established between the writer and the reader, and the simple fact that both writer and reader—regardless of their differences—share the interest of solving a problem, bettering their community, and seeking truth.So what is an enthymeme? It is a claim (you are probably familiar with this as a thesis) plus a reason. Your reason here is the best answer you can find that answers why your claim is valid. So, for example, if I argue that brown bananas are better than green bananas, as soon as I say that, you are probably wondering why they are better. My reason would be my response to that question: they are better BECAUSE they are easier to digest. In full enthymeme form, this argument looks like:Brown bananas are better than green bananas BECAUSE they are easier to digest.You need to be aware of a few things:1.The subjects of your claim and your reason should be shared (or the same. In this case they are both “brown bananas.”). It is possible to have a strong enthymeme with terms that are not shared, but by ensuring shared terms, you decrease any gaps in reasoning. It saves you a few steps later on.2.Your reason should not repeat your claim in different language. When this happens, we call it circular reasoning.3.The language you use—particularly in regards to your subject—should be as specific as possible. In this case, my terms are specific: brown bananas, green bananas. Even my reason is nice and specific.4.The scope of your argument should be appropriate. Scope refers to the breadth and width of your argument. Appropriate will depend on a few things, including the length of the paper you are writing. In some cases, you might have an argument that requires an entire book to explain. In the case of our example, I can easily explain my argument in a few pages.5.One last thing to note: your enthymeme is the answer to your question at issue. You should always start with a question at issue (a yes/no question; a question with debatable answers). This will guarantee that your enthymeme is debatable and not just a descriptive statement. Brown bananas are sweet is an example of a descriptive statement. No one is going to argue with you on this one.In a very basic way, this is the outline of an essay:I.Introduction: establish common ground by giving a broad discussion of the topic; explain the problem or the question at issue; present your solutionII.Middle: develop the burden of proof using evidence.a.How does teaching cultural histories and values promote community pride?b.How does government funding help to create community pride?c.Why is this significant especially in the midst of a dominant culture?d.(Please note that each question does not necessarily equate to a paragraph or even a section; you might answer two questions in one section. The sample essay does this. You can also separate each question into a section—whatever makes sense to you.)e.Counterargument(s)III.Conclusion: summarize your argument and answer the so what question.I would also like to suggest that you can move beyond the scope of the enthymeme. The enthymeme is meant to be generative (to generate possibilities), not constrictive. Yet it helps you to focus your argument. Nonetheless, you might have another question that you feel is necessary to answer before or after you work through your burden of proof. You can certainly add to your burden of proof, but you definitely want to ensure that you fulfill your burden of proof. For a four-page essay, you will probably just respond to your burden of proof and not go too far outside of it.
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