The images of death in Heart of Darkness provide a symbolic background to the theme of colonial exploitation and corruption.
Sample Thesis #2
I am fascinated by Marlow as a character and am also fascinated by the fact that he is a seafaring man.
What’s wrong with this example? How can it be improved?
Sample thesis #2 -- revised
Marlow exists as a fascinating character because he is, in part, a character type: the strong, silent man of the sea.
Sample Thesis #3
Conrad’s Heart of Darkness is a thought-provoking narrative.
Why is this example ineffective? What changes need to be made?
Sample thesis #3 -- revised
Conrad’s Heart ofDarkness provokesthought in the reader by forcingthe reader to consider what happens to human nature and character without the constraints and checks of society.
Sample intro with thesis #1
In The Grapes of Wrath, John Steinbeck characterizes the protagonist, Tom Joad, as a morally conscious person who stands up against evil. The image of Tom’s mother “slow with weariness” sitting and scraping potatoes affects Tom very much – so much that he is willing to give his life to rebel against the people who seek to harm his family. Through the use of imagery and diction, Steinbeck reveals Tom’s noble conscious and characterizes him as a rebellious – albeit rash – young man.
Sample intro with thesis #2
In The Box Man, by Barbara Lazear Ascher, the protagonist reveals that a life of solitude need not always be lonely. Though the Box Man lives a life of solitude as a homeless wanderer, Ascher describes his “grand design” and “grandmotherly finger licking” to convince readers that their assumptions about homeless people are unfounded – and that they can live a dignified life. By describing the Box Man as “dignified” and “at ease”, Ascher paints a vivid picture of a man who chose a life a comfort and solitude and defeated loneliness by becoming his own friend.
Other examples of a thesis for consideration:
Golding’s major argument throughout his novel Lord of the Flies is that evil is an inborn trait of mankind.
Montresor is successful in getting his revenge because of his vengeful nature, his ability to use reverse psychology and manipulation to get people to do what he wants, and his intelligent choices.
Attention-Getter: First sentence or two should be an attention-getter. There are multiple ways to have make up an attention-getter.
Necessary information: Necessary information includes:
Murder! Is this a right way to get back at someone? Montresor believes it is in Edgar Allan Poe's "The Cask of Amontillado." In the story, Montresor tells the reader that he was insulted by Fortunato. It is because of this insult that Montresor has vowed revenge. He finds Fortunato on the streets during carnival and lures him into his family's catacombs under the pretense of having Fortunato test wine. Once they are in the catacombs, Montresor chains Fortunato to a wall of granite and buries him alive. He was able to achieve this murder because of his ability to manipulate and his intelligence.
Body -- TIQA
Topic sentence (with transition in any body paragraph other than 1st)
Introduce quotation: put the quotation into context.
Quotation: provide your quotation
Analyze: explain to the reader the importance of the quotation and how it supports your topic sentence.
Sample Body Paragraph #1
This theme against commitment is not just connected with the main characters. Fitzgerald portrays it as the common behavior for many married couples during the 1920s, when the book is set. Nick, attending one of Gatsby’s elaborate parties, notices that “most of the remaining women were now having fights with men said to be their husbands” (56). One such husband
Body paragraph #1 (con’t)
“was talking with a curious intensity to a young actress, and his wife after attempting to laugh at the situation in a dignified and indifferent way broke down entirely and resorted to flank attacks…” (56). Flirtation and even pursuit of other relationships, even in the presence of one’s spouse, is common in the world Fitzgerald creates.
Body Paragraph #2
The last boy, Piggy, fears Jack with good reason. Jack takes his anger out on Piggy, who stands in stark contrast to Jack’s character: “I’m scared of him…but if you stand out of the way he’d hurt the next thing. And that’s me” (93). Piggy handles this fear by avoiding Jack and remaining loyal to Ralph. Another fear that Piggy experiences is a fear of being ignored or shunned by others. Above all
Body Paragraph #2 (con’t)
else, Piggy wants acknowledgement of his opinions and thoughts, as proven by his statement: “I got the conch…You let me speak!”(42). This quotation shows Piggy’s constant efforts to be recognized by the others and to make them pay attention to him. Throughout most of the novel, Piggy seeks refuge from his fears in both Ralph and the conch.
Conclusion – 4Rs
Restate– Restate your thesis without copying it word for word.
Review-- Review your main points.
Relate– Relate your argument to the broader world.