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Although much of the validity of this paper lies in its combi- nation of reminiscence, research, and critique, more important is 136 - 106 - Liberal Arts in a Cultural Studies Composition Course Amy s realization that she is personally deeply committed to the saving of the mountains and therefore opposes excessive strip mining even as she accedes to the necessity of some surface min- ing. In addition, she realizes that her childhood experiences have academic legitimacy as vehicles to move her audience emotion- ally to share her commitment. Once I found that I was comfortable with others and with you, I began to come out help writing essays for college of my shell. Several have taken positions that simplify the complex factors involved in evaluating particular issues. Insisting that parents must monitor children as they watch television exempli- fies this kind of argument, as does the argument that affirmative action is wrong because itTprevents individuals from succeeding on term papers custom their own. Students have more success when they take a middle- of-the-road approach that reflects a mild shift in thinking. A stu- dent who had been laid off from the Fruit of the Loom garment plant demonstrated this in her paper on the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

While she opposed NAFTA, she was able to recognize that the company could pay workers in Mexico less and that those workers needed jobs just as she did. I consider her response indicative of a greater sensitivity to human life and dignity than she had on entering term papers custom the class. My students often come to college bearing the assumptions, insecurities, and prejudices of their families and economic class. Using the custom essays usa liberal arts tradition in my composition classes, espe- cially its liberal humanism, enables me to complement the cri- tique of U.

Composition, as a core course in the higher education curricu- lum, has a stake in producing good citizens as well as critical 137 - 107 — WRITING ASSIGNMENTS citizens.

The liberal arts tradition gives me a means of tackling both goals. The American Dream is alive and well in community college students.

I want to help them learn to use it as sociologist Robert Wuthnow (1996) suggests U.

Appendix English 101 Third Paper Assignment: Taking a Stand on an Issue Write a 4-page researched argument paper on an issue that is in dispute in our society, one that matters to you or affects you. Your claim, the stand you are taking on the issue, should be something that you care about, have a personal interest in, or something you have had experi- ence with. For example, you might want to argue that noise pollution laws are not strict enough because you and your roommate are being bothered by a noisy business that has recently located close to your apartment building.

You might consider issues of the media and cul- ture, of gender, or of poverty and wealth as we have discussed them in class. Research handled in the MLA format is required for the paper. The paper must cite 3 sources outside of our book (only one of which can come from the Internet) and thus must include a works cited list. This is not to be a long research paper but rather a brief argument paper for which you do research. Magazine, newspaper, and journal articles found through library databases, along with your experience, are to be your sources.

Determine whether you will follow the five-part argument or the problem-solution structure of organization for your argument. Estab- lish your audience considering your issue and those interested in it.

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You are writing to persuade them to agree with you or to be open to consid- ering your claim of fact, value, or policy. Your own position should be clear and you should establish your ethos as credible through your term papers custom knowl- edge, your reasonableness, and your willingness to consider other views as possible. Use a reasonable, logical, persuasive tone establishing facts and offering your opinion.

This response is used with permission of the student. American Cul- ture and the Media: Reading, Writing, Thinking. Composition-Rhetoric: Backgrounds, Theory, and Pedagogy. Composition in the University: Historical and Polemical Essays. Cultivating Humanity: A Classical Defense of Reform in Liberal Education. Community of Learning: The American College and the Liberal Arts Tradition. The Condition of American Liberal Educa- tion: Pragmatism and a Changing Tradition. Possible Lives: The Promise of Public Education in America.

Common Ground: Dialogue, Understanding, and the Teaching of Composition.

Although there are some graduate programs, the focus at UT Martin is on under- graduate education. Many of the 5,500 students are the first in their family to attend college, and the reading-writing literacy they bring with them is mixed.

English 112 is the second course in a two-semester sequence taken by most first-year students. For many years, the course description and texts emphasized genre study, with a particular emphasis on literary analysis. A department committee recom- mended anthologies and faculty selected.

The description also listed the following purposes for En- glish 112.

The first semester the new course description was imple- mented my two sections of English 112, From Private Lives to Public Dialogue, were among a handful of theme-based courses. I believe, as Brooke, Mirtz, and Evans (1994) do, that writers need time to write, ownership of their writing, and response to their writing throughout a semester, as well as op- portunities to hear what other writers are doing.

The many op- portunities for writing-based interaction would help students grow as writers in a community of writers. While two weeks of my sections of English 112 focused on poetry (to take advantage of a visiting poet who read as part of the campus academic speaker program), most of the writing assignments and the reading worked incrementally toward the Save the World writing task near the end of the course. I wanted to immerse my students in real books and the music of language. I wanted them to be startled into learning something new and relevant to their lives. I wanted to implement a principle of the writing classroom to which Zemelman and Daniels (1988) and others subscribe — much, varied, and ongo- ing reading. Finally, I wanted my students to approach writing from research because they cared, not sim- ply because they had to. I wanted them to revel in choices, to see that they could write well and with enjoyment, and that their writing could make a difference, either on campus, back home, or somewhere else. The point was to become acquainted with li- brary sources, to read in them, and to absorb them, rather than, in the case of electronic sources, merely figuring out how to cut and paste from them. Too often students locate too many sources that are too complex or too remote too close to deadline with no time left to let information settle and gel. First, using what they had learned about electronic databases, students were to look up an interview, one or more reviews of one of the books on our list or another book by one of our authors, an essay by one of our authors, or a news article about one of our authors.

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