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Nature and nurture essay research (GRE exam)


avih 2 / 5  
Jan 23, 2009   #1

Topic: Nature and not nurture shapes personality



I am practicing to write effectively to prepare for my upcoming GRE essay exam. Please comment on the use of my prepositions and sentence structure and transitions. Thanks

The contention that inherited factors, rather than environmental influences, are primarily responsible for the formation of the personality is an enticing argument. The position statement mentions 'personality' as if it were a well-defined and static phenomenon, whereas, it is difficult even for experts to define what constitutes personality (introduction from GRE reviewer.)

It may be more accurate to say, not that people inherited particular personality traits, rather people inherited a range of emotional and intellectual character. The personality of a person is extremely complex to classify and categorize. The statement contains an illusory false dilemma that does not consider the complex structure of personality. For instance, environmental factors contribute to whether these inborn characters are expressed or not-or perhaps if some of these characters are expressed at all. It is also impossible to delineate what characters are inherited and what are products of the environment.

Some may wish to object to my position in this argument that personality factors are a product of a person's genetic characteristics and not environmental influences. The statement that nature shapes personality may be suspecting when viewed in light of a few simple examples. For instance, people sometimes obviously make rational decisions that go against their values in their upbringing or some people's style of fashion are anachronistic with contemporary society. I believe that personality is a product of nature and nurture.

For example, my eldest brother, Pit and my younger brother, Oliver couldn't be less alike. Pit is a year older than Oliver. They grew up together in the same environment in our old town and went to the same school having the same circle of friends. They love to hang out with friends. Pit enjoys playing tennis and biking and Oliver, billiards. Both Pit and Oliver are academically competitive, Pit is more inclined in logical reasoning, abstract, and creative writing while Oliver excel more in arts. They both love jazz and rock music but only Pit appreciates classical music. Pit is the quiet type, more of intrapersonal, and Oliver, interpersonal. Oliver is gregarious, outgoing, and sociable. Oliver is more vocal and dominates in a conversation while Pit is the silent type, uncommunicative, and habitually disinclined to talk. In rough times, Oliver easily wince at pain and inclined to complain while Pit bears his troubles bravely, never ask for sympathy, never yield to sorrow. Pit is an omnivorous reader, a wide variety of topics interests him from science fiction, national geographic, readers digest to travel journal and leisure magazines. Oliver only appreciates political issues. Both my brothers have similar characteristics but have unique traits and behavior when alone and with friends.

Personality shaping, therefore is a product of both nature and nurture and it is difficult to describe which of the following characteristics influences the other.
EF_Kevin 8 / 13,321 129  
Jan 23, 2009   #2
It may be more accurate to say not that people inherited particular personality traits, but rather that people inherited a range of emotional and intellectual character.

The statement contains an illusory false dilemma that does not consider the complex structure of personality. This sentence is unnecessary and unclear about what statement it is referring to.

At the start of the 2nd para, you seem to argue nature, but at the end you argue nature AND nurture. You should choose one of those to make your main focus.

Personality shaping, therefore is a product of both nature and nurture, and it is difficult to describe which of those following circumstances influences the other.


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