Elements of an Argumentative Paper

       The first set of assigned pages discusses the differences between creating an argumentative essay and creating supportive thesis. With an argumentative essay there are four main parts: thesis, evidence, refutation, and conclusion. You should generally have three supporting paragraphs and be more than prepared to argue the opposing side of the argument. First reading assignment gives a good example about whether or not college students should have to take foreign language and then argues that college students already have too many classes to take as it is. Moreover, the evidence is the most important because it shows that you have done your research on the topic, and you are prepared to convince someone that what you are arguing is true. Also, it is imperative that everything on your writing should be objective and comprehensive.

The second set of the assignment talks about what makes an argumentative essay true and easy to believe. Your essay must contain the following steps in order to be the most factual and true; accuracy, credibility objectivity, currency, and comprehensiveness.  Accuracy is important because it assesses the truthfulness of the information. Credibility makes it easy to believe the information. With credibility you, you must often see the publisher, the date, the author, and the sources cited. Objectivity is necessary because it highlights the ability to acknowledge bias and eliminate it. Comprehensiveness is important on writing an argumentative paper because not everyone is at the same reading level. An essay need to contain factual information, yet should be written in such a way that anyone who reads it should be easy to understand.



The main point or message from reading both sets of passages is that when writing an argumentative essay, it is important to contain the four elements of structure of the essay as well as the five elements of factuality of the essay in order to be sure that it is an essay worthy of being called an argumentative paper.


Be careful where you get your information from…


The internet is known as the holy place where all of ones questions can be anwsered or ones statement can be backed up. However, that isn’t always the case. Nowadays, people will believe anything from any source because, well… it’s the internet! The truth is you can’t just get your information from anywhere. According to Chapter 8 of Practical Argument: A Text and Anthology, when wanting to use print sources to back up ones opinion or provide additional information that source must be accurate, credible, objective, current, and comprehensive. Without those five criteria a source isn’t very much believable.

For example, If you read a blog that said that Lil Wayne was dead would you believe it? Or got word from some unheard of news source that the zombie apocalypse is beginning… would you believe that to? Honestly, people just post whatever they want for entertainment purposes or just because they think there very educated on a topic when in reality, they are not credible or accurate. Most information from sources can be filled with subjective and uncomprehensive statements. There are times though that unreliable sources can be credible but it’s up to us to evaluate those sources and figure what is true and what isn’t.

I guess not everyone should be judged for what they post or what they post about. As far as the issue discussed on pages 219-220 about social-networking sites being looked at for employement; i don’t think that’s right. When we evaluate people, it makes more sense to make our opinions about them on the right aspects of their life. Seeing if someone is well equipped for a job based on their facebook doesn’t seem fair to me. Someone’s personal life should be seperate from their job. Also, why judge someone through a networking site? Seriously though, not everything seen is true or serious that’s why it helps to actually know that personin reality. At the same time, some people get too crazy and post ANYTHING on their facebook; those people need to chill out.

The bottom line is that not all sources are credible in every situation. One should look up multiple sources and use their evaluating skills to see if that source is right to use. The internet is a crazy yet good place to get information, but remember to be carerful where you get your information from.



Images vs. Text


Maus by Art Spiegelman is a great example of text images. It was a easy book to read, but because of all the pictures it slowed your reading down so you can pay close attention to the detailed pictures. Unlike text book reading you can read through the material more quickly without any pictures to distract you as your continuing to turn the pages. Most history book are more reading that looking at the pictures in the book. I think pictures are good to give you an visual idea of what the story is talking about. A lot of people would disagree. They say pictures take away from the person’s own imagination. The two come together to balance your ability to understand what you have read and give you a visual at the same time.

Other text book don’t use images through out the whole book. The images not only make the reading more easier but, it also give the reader a interest to want to keep reading the material. History is a sensitive subject like religion and politics. So a lot of people don’t want to hear or read about history. They feel it wasn’t their era so why should they have to hear or read about it, or it’s not a part of their background so why should I care to learn or read from it. Nowadays, it’s a melting pot of all races of people so it’s interesting and necessary to learn about all cultures not just one. If you are a open minded person you would agree. I believe traveling to different places help you think outside the box. It help you to not only be exposed to your own heritage.

If more images were displayed in text maybe people would understand the material more better. Have a better attitude about the subject because the pictures draw you in. History is sometime hard to read and figure out. I think images can help people to be more drawn into learning and reading more about history.

Non-Fictional Graphic Narratives Taken Seriously

I have ready a few graphic narratives throughout my life, but they were all fictional stories that let you jump into a different world and escape reality. As I grew up I always thought of graphic narratives as funny, unrealistic works of literature that were meant to amuse people. My opinion of graphic narratives has drastically changed since reading Maus by Art Spiegelman.

After reading and seeing many awful things that happened during the holocaust it was nice to read a biography about a survivor in a different form than many others. When you go to a holocaust museum, read about it in a book, or see pictures online you can’t help but feel sick inside and feel for those who were treated in such a manner. The graphic narrative Maus  i felt was able to tone down the gruesome appearances of the Jews, and violence that went on during the holocaust. Having the characters as animals instead of people i felt made it easier to look at the pictures rather than looking at a bunch of starved and mistreated humans. If during the graphic narrative all you saw were real people being treated in such a way it would probably make for a little bit of a tougher read, because it would be harder to look at some of the pictures. Especially when it has the picture of the boy being swung by his leg and slammed against the wall and blood being splattered. https://i1.wp.com/forbiddenplanet.co.uk/blog/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/maus-art-spiegelman.jpeghttp://forbiddenplanet.co.uk/blog/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/maus-art-spiegelman.jpeg

Having a book like this i feel would make it possible for even a young child to read, because you wouldn’t have to worry about them having nightmares or expose them to such graphic photos. I think that graphic narratives like this would be a great way to expose a child to something that was so awful. It may not give them the full effect of what happened, but they could grasp the concept of how bad things were.

A non-fictional graphic narrative can be a way to express reality, but just in a different way. Not all people learn the same way. If having pictures to help you understand what the author is trying to get across helps someone learn, then they should not be forced to read a book that is only text. Text books have pictures to help you understand what the author(s) are talking about, so why can’t the books assigned to us in our English classes? We need to be able to adapt to new changes, and if reading a graphic narrative can help people learn then they should be taken more seriously and used throughout schools.

Life Is a Cabaret

No matter to which form of media we turn, we are automatically bombarded with horrifying pictures or events. Sooner or later, we start to get used to those kinds of stories that usually involve unacquainted people. However, Art Spiegelman’s graphic novel Maus allows us to build a relationship with its characters and the associated life stories. In contrast to other books, we don’t have to imagine anything in our heads but can see everything in black and white.

Right now, the Collin Theatre Center performs the musical Cabaret that is set during the rise of the Nazi party in Germany. While watching the show, the audience members laugh with and about Cabaret’s Emcee (master of ceremonies). However, in the final scene of the play, he shows up wearing a concentration camp uniform with the Yellow Star and the pink triangle. With this attached triangle, homosexuals were lumped together with rapists and pedophiles. And in the end, he walks off the stage through a gate labelled with the word “Dachau” under supervision of German Nazis. The powerful image of one of the main characters walking into this bright light baffles the audience every night. This reaction accentuates the fact that seeing something evokes a different sphere of emotions than reading does. We got to know this character not only in our imagination but were able to see him with our own eyes.


In another scene of Cabaret, the Emcee dances with a female gorilla proclaiming his love for her, and the song “If You Could See Her” ends with the words “she wouldn’t look Jewish at all.” This shows that Art Spiegelman isn’t the only one who wraps human stories into the shape of animals to communicate the horrors of World War II. Furthermore, it emphasizes the brilliance of this form of analogy.

The citation “life is a cabaret” connects all of these facets: people want to be entertained.  If someone is able to entertain his or her audience while including educational aspects and provoking emotional reactions, entertainment reaches a totally different level. And it becomes irrelevant whether this form of entertainment takes place on the stage of a theatre or on blank pages filled with visual life. The importance is to call attention to the past by presenting characters with a name, a visage, and ultimately a voice.

And here my troubles began…

Art Spiegelman’s Maus is probably the best graphic novel I’ve ever read. Growing up my Dad would take my brother and I to the library and we would pick out a collection to bring home. Sometimes I’d bring home collections of Calvin and Hobbes or Garfield. I remember crawling into my Dad’s lap while he would read Superman and Batman comics, but never before had we brought home a “comic” like this.

I can appreciate this book for what it is. It’s craft-fully put together that offers humor within a very serious setting. I enjoy that Spiegelman uses his father broken english through out his entire book, but what I enjoyed most was that he drew different animals for the different races.

In a comic there aren’t many descriptive words so we have to use the pictures to decipher the details. I hadn’t realized that while reading Maus I was skipping the pictures and reading the conversation; making my own images in my head. Once I noticed I was doing so, I went back and read not only the conversations but the images. This brought a different perspective to light, but also made it harder to read. I can really appreciate something that can make me really read twice and have to stop and think about.

One of my favorite books is Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged, this book is over 1000 small pages with smaller words. A very descriptive book, it has taken me a little over 4 years to read and reread and actually get the entire meaning/concept. I bring this up because maybe if it had been more of a graphic narrative, it wouldn’t have taken me so long. 😉




I have never read a comic on my own will… not once.
In grade school, during history class we had to dissect political cartoons/comics. It was all people degrading and offending each other. One time I had a project where I had to make my own comic strip…it was a pain in the butt to do. I’ve always had a stereotype that comics…are not serious. They exist to express sarcasm, fantasy, or to offend.

Through Art Spiegelman’s Maus I changed my view on comics/graphic narratives.
In the beginning, it was hard to read. I’ve never read comics, so I wasn’t even sure what order I was supposed to read the boxes! I caught myself not looking a the images, and just zooming through the text. It was so frustrating! But as I got the hang of it, it became such a fun experience. Looking at actual sketches of the hideouts, concentration camps, and maps of journeys, gave me a deeper understanding of the Holocaust.

The pictures, and the conversations between Art and his father, make the book so much more real. It’s not just another Holocaust book school is making us read, that goes on for pages and pages. Those books are not as relatable. To someone who does not enjoy reading, those thick Holocaust books are just another textbook. But Maus, is so easy to read, and I can see, not just imagine, what happend.

I think Art is genius for coming up with the idea to make such a serious topic into a graphic narrative/comic. There must have been a lot of controversy when he first invented his idea. He probably even fought with his own thoughts. “What if people don’t take my story seriously?” “What if people look down upon me for making such a emotional story into a comic?” However, Art was able to overcome society and his thoughts, and introduce a “serious comic” to the world of literature.

I admire Art… I’m really thankful that he wrote this graphic narrative, and I really enjoyed it. Best “school forced” book I’ve ever read 🙂

Taken & Decorated  by Celli Ra

Taken & Decorated by Celli Ra