writing essay 02


This (minimum) 1,200 word* draft will be a full-fledged essay that makes and defends a claim that responds to a Question at Issue of your own design and choosing. The Q@I must be related to and contextualized within the conversations we’ve had this term about genetic engineering and food justice—including food security, food sovereignty, and farm labor rights. You are encouraged to also draw from the conversations on the weekly discussion boards as well.

Contextualizing Your Argument

Your essay should engage with at least two of the assigned sources, which include:

  • Dan Koeppel, “Can This Fruit Be Saved?”
  • Pamela Ronald, “The Case for Engineering Our Food”
  • Elizabeth Henderson, “Food Justice: What It Means and Why We Need It”
  • Vandana Shiva, Stolen Harvest
  • Winona LaDuke, “Ricekeepers”
  • The Food Chains documentary

*The final version of this essay will be, at minimum, 1,500 words in length.

Task, or Assignment Instructions

Introduce your essay with a paragraph that hooks your reader, establishes the context for your argument, and states your Enthymeme (Claim because Reason).

Develop and organize your argument through the Reason of your Enthymeme.

This line of reasoning will include

  1. an inquiry into the Reason informed by specific evidence (five or more paragraphs),
  2. a major Counter Argument (one or two paragraphs) followed by a Rebuttal, and
  3. an Earned Conclusion (at least one paragraph).

Credit the ideas of others by including parenthetical citations, a Works Cited page that lists the sources you cite in your essay, and, if needed, a Works Consulted page that lists any other sources you consulted. Adhere to the conventions of MLA documentation.

Polish your writing. Aim to write formal academic prose while remaining hospitable to your readers. Adhere to the grammatical requirements of Standard Edited American English, MLA documentation style, and formatting guidelines stated in the syllabus.

Essay 1.1 Minimum Requirements Checklists

This draft must meet the minimum requirements of the assignment, including page length and formatting requirements.

Logical Development Requirements

In order to earn an “On Time” grade for this assignment, the essay must:

  • Respond to a significant question at issue of your choosing that is related to and/or contextualized within the conversations we’ve had thus far this term
    • Effectively incorporate at least two (2) of the assigned readings into the “conversation” through the use of direct quotes, paraphrase, and summary
  • Make an original argument about some problem, disagreement, or gap in knowledge that’s based in the conversations we’ve developed on the weekly discussion boards
    • To clarify: When I say I want you to write an original argument, I mean that I want you to focus on developing your ideas and your own line of reasoning instead of simply summarizing one of the source’s arguments back at me.
    • Additionally, you and your peers may use similar questions at issue or make similar claims, but the way you argue the point will be different from theirs. In other words, it is just fine to use the same Q@I as your peers and to make a similar argument. The originality will come through in the way you write the argument.
  • Include a properly-formatted enthymeme (includes a claim, a reason, and a shared term) that identifies the argument you’re developing
  • Develop the line of reasoning clearly and logically by providing evidence, analysis, and explanation to support the reason and, if need be, the warrant of your essay.
    • For our purposes, evidence includes:
      • Quotes or paraphrases from the assigned readings
      • Personal anecdotes or observations
      • Logical reasoning
      • Analysis of evidence and explanation of your reasoning
    • The use of outside sources for this essay is prohibited unless you make a compelling argument to me for the necessity of including an outside source
  • Earn the claim/conclusion of the argument by clearly explaining and supporting the logic of your premises (the reason and the warrant) and their connection to the claim

*Note: A counterargument is not required for the rough draft, though you may include one if you wish. We will discuss and workshop counterarguments in Week 9 instead, and the final version of this essay (the Essay 2.2) will require a strong counterargument and rebuttal.

Mechanical, Formatting, and Submission Requirements

  • Meets the 1,200 word minimum (excluding the Works Cited page)
  • Uses formal academic prose
  • Adheres to the requirements of Standard Edited American English, MLA documentation style, and formatting guidelines stated in the syllabus
  • Includes parenthetical citations and a Works Cited page that lists the texts you cite in your essay
  • Arrives on time as a digital copy on Canvas

Source Use

You must contextualize both versions of this essay in at least two of the course readings for this unit. You may also use the Oxford English Dictionary. If you consult but do not cite or otherwise use information from other materials, you must include a Works Consulted page.**

**A Works Consulted page is basically a Works Cited page for sources that you do not cite in your essay but which you consulted to develop your argument.**

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