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I need help with my first English Lit essay (The Great Gatsby & the American dream)


Bekkoned 1 / 1  
Jul 6, 2012   #1
Ok, so first of all I haven't written for a few years and Im taking an eccelerated pathway to university course.

The essay statement is "GATSBY IS A FLAWED HERO WHOSE LIFE AND IDENTITY INVOLVE A COMMENTARY ABOUT THE AMERICAN DREAM OF THE 1920s." (1500 words excluding quotes).

It sounds simple, and I am sure it is, but I am seriously lacking confidence at this point. So...

First Question: Any advice or criticism on the two introductions below (these are my first two attempts).

INTRODUCTION IDEA ONE:
The concept of taking a postmodern issue and giving it a human face is one often accredited to artists such as Picasso or Andy Warhol, whose paintings have been able to timelessly represent significant cultural ideals of their eras. Another such artist, of a different genre however, is American author Scott Fitzgerald, whose depiction of a wealthy gent living on the French Riviera, post WW1, has created the image of the "American Dream" as a wealthy man named Jay Gatsby who, like the ideal itself is both complicated and flawed.

INTRODUCTION IDEA TWO:
Upon first glance, The Great Gatsby could be mistaken as a tale of love affairs and wealth during the 1920s. Indeed this is true on a simplified scale; however, American author Scott Fitzgerald had a much more complex theme in mind when writing the tale of Jay Gatsby and Daisy Buchanan. Published in 1925, the Great Gatsby provides an in-depth understanding of the issues associated with the "American Dream", as well as insight into the lifestyles of wealthy men such as James Gatsby, who like the ideal itself is both complicated and flawed.

Second Question: Once I have the introduction, where do I start with the body; Do I start with evidence based on setting, protagonist..etc?

Any comments you can give would be greatly appreciated, thankyou
<3 Bekkoned
ah_zafari [Contributor] 40 / 672 148  
Jul 6, 2012   #2
First Question: Any advice or criticism on the two introductions below (these are my first two attempts).

What you wrote as introduction was really good, but there is only on thing that I think you should add to it. At the end of an introduction u should mention that what issues are going to be discussed in the body. This part of the introduction is called "Blueprint". In fact, a blueprint is the outline of the essay.

I personally liked the second introduction because it was more related to the topic.

Regards
Ahmad
OP Bekkoned 1 / 1  
Jul 7, 2012   #3
Thankyou Amhed,
is the blueprint the same as the thesis statement? Thankyou so much for your advice :) I just got told that I should have started with the body paragraphs instead (how can you write an introduction to something thatdoesn't exist).. So im setting that aside for now and am going to focus on the body. Wish me luck!
ah_zafari [Contributor] 40 / 672 148  
Jul 7, 2012   #4
is the blueprint the same as the thesis statement?

The answer is NO. As I told you a blueprint is something like the outline of the body and it also can be considered as the support of the thesis statement. In fact, it shows that what issues is going to be argued in each paragraph of the body. Pay attention to the introduction that I wrote below (I mentioned different parts of it) (The first sentence of the introduction has been written in the website "soc.ucsb.edu/faculty/baldwin/classes/soc142/scznDEF.html":

Socialization is the process by which children and adults learn from others. We begin learning from others during the early days of life; and most people continue their social learning all through life (unless some mental or physical disability slows or stops the learning process) (Motivator and general back ground. The writer of this introduction tried to open the introduction with the definition of socialization) . There are different elements that can influence socialization process (Thesis statement: the essay is going to focus on the factors which affect the process) . However, sociologists have classified all these effective factors into four main categories of the family, schooling, peer groups, and media (Blueprint: these four elements will be discussed in the body. In fact, the first paragraph of the body is allocated to the role of family, the second paragraph to schooling, and so on) .

Hope this helps
Ahmad


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