Persuasive Paragraph

Persuasive Paragraph

What is a persuasive/argument essay?

In persuasive writing, a writer takes a position FOR or AGAINST an issue and writes to convince the reader to believe or do something Persuasive writing, also known as the argument essay, utilizes logic and reason to show that one idea is more legitimate than another idea. It attempts to persuade a reader to adopt a certain point of view or to take a particular action. The argument must always use sound reasoning and solid evidence by stating facts, giving logical reasons, using examples, and quoting experts.

 Tips for writing a persuasive essays:

A persuasive paragraph starts with a topic sentence, which states an opinion about something. The body sentences give reasons that support the opinion, and the closing sentence may state the opinion in a new way. In the following paragraph, Willis tells about a favorite school event and gives reasons why everyone should attend.

Things to know about persuasive paragraphs:

  1. the first sentence should lay out the writer’s point of view on the topic at hand
  2. supporting sentences should back up the opinion with logic
  3. all claims should be able to be supported with evidence

When planning a persuasive essay, follow these steps

  1. Choose your position. Which side of the issue or problem are you going to write about, and what solution will you offer? Know the purpose of your essay.
  2. Analyze your audience. Decide if your audience agrees with you, is neutral, or disagrees with your position.
  3. Research your topic. A persuasive essay must provide specific and convincing evidence. Often it is necessary to go beyond your own knowledge and experience. You might need to go to the library or interview people who are experts on your topic.
  4. Structure your essay. Figure out what evidence you will include and in what order you will present the evidence. Remember to consider your purpose, your audience, and your topic.

The following criteria are essential to produce an effective argument

  • Be well informed about your topic. To add to your knowledge of a topic, read thoroughly about it, using legitimate sources. Take notes.
  • Test your thesis. Your thesis, i.e., argument, must have two sides. It must be debatable. If you can write down a thesis statement directly opposing your own, you will ensure that your own argument is debatable.
  • Disprove the opposing argument. Understand the opposite viewpoint of your position and then counter it by providing contrasting evidence or by finding mistakes and inconsistencies in the logic of the opposing argument.
  • Support your position with evidence. Remember that your evidence must appeal to reason.

Parts of the Persuasive Paragraph

1. The Introduction

The introduction has a “hook or grabber” to catch the reader’s attention. Some “grabbers” include:

  1. Opening with an unusual detail: (Manitoba, because of its cold climate, is not thought of as a great place to be a reptile. Actually, it has the largest seasonal congregation of garter snakes in the world!)
  2. Opening with a strong statement: (Cigarettes are the number one cause of lighter sales in Canada!)
  3. Opening with a Quotation: (Elbert Hubbard once said , “Truth is stronger than fiction.”)
  4. Opening with an Anecdote: An anecdote can provide an amusing and attention-getting opening if it is short and to the point.
  5. Opening with a Statistic or Fact: Sometimes a statistic or fact will add emphasis or interest to your topic. It may be wise to include the item’s authoritative source.
  6. Opening with a Question. (Have you ever considered how many books we’d read if it were not for television?)
  7. Opening with an Exaggeration or Outrageous Statement. (The whole world watched as the comet flew overhead.)

2. The Body

The writer then provides evidence to support the opinion offered in the thesis statement in the introduction. The body should consist of at least three paragraphs. Each paragraph is based on a solid reason to back your thesis statement. Since almost all issues have sound arguments on both sides of the question, a good persuasive writer tries to anticipate opposing viewpoints and provide counter-arguments along with the main points in the essay. One of the three paragraphs should be used to discuss opposing viewpoints and your counterargument.

The following are different ways to support your argument:

  • Facts – A powerful means of convincing, facts can come from your reading, observation, or personal experience. Note: Do not confuse facts with truths. A “truth” is an idea believed by many people, but it cannot be proven.
  • Statistics – These can provide excellent support. Be sure your statistics come from responsible sources. Always cite your sources.
  • Quotes – Direct quotes from leading experts that support your position are invaluable.
  • Examples – Examples enhance your meaning and make your ideas concrete. They are the proof.

3. The Conclusion

A piece of persuasive writing usually ends by summarizing the most important details of the argument and stating once again what the reader is to believe or do.

As a general guideline, when writing a persuasive essay:

  1. Have a firm opinion that you want your reader to accept.
  2. Begin with a grabber or hook to get the reader’s attention.
  3. Offer evidence to support your opinion.
  4. Conclude with a restatement of what you want the reader to do or believe.

Free Persuasive Examples

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