Pragmatopience A Post Post Modern Philosophy

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Pragmatopience is a post-post modern Philosophy. It is derived from the words: pragmatism, Utopianism, and Sapience.

I would like to explain how these words: pragmatism, utopianism and sapience (wisdom) alter the course of philosophy as pragmatopience.

Pragmatism refers to philosophy of putting theory into an application or process. How can new content be created through examining its philosophical etymology. One way to do it is by a process of Materialist-Humanism. In this world of today where cultures and economies go global, there is a greater range of cooperation and participation. Cooperation should involve the transfer of technologies and participation of cultures. Cultures become a practice of intermingling and sharing and thereby reaching a consensus of global catharsis. Technology should have a human face. Yes, the social media sites like Face Book, Twitter and Instagram helps to network people from all over the world. So too is Amazon, reaching out to parallel economies and markets and helping artisans and small traders to sell their work. News on Social Media becomes Viral and Markets merge with the adoption of technologies. Webinars and infotainment are so commonly popular. Materialism is to have economic gains and humanism is to have a human face.

The next ingredient of Pragmatopience is utopian becoming Pragmautopian. It’s is an ideal that is perfected to reality. This can occur through a process of dialogic-democratic-solidarity. Dialogism is the Philosophy of dialogue nurtured by Michael Bakhtin. Today there’s a shift of equilibrium from a nation to that of internationalism. Dialogue and Negotiation are done to solve recurring economic and political problems occurring in geo-politics. Workers, Unions, minorities and Pressure Groups protest with the majority and vie their presence using the dialogic tool as a narrative of struggle.

The next element of Pragmatopience is Sapience and Sapience means religious wisdom. Put in practice, it refers to the practice of finding solutions to problems. Sapience asks the questions should technologies should be patented or should they be used for the benefit of mankind. Some websites like Face Book, Twitter and Instagram offer a free service and they go a long way to support global democracy. Sapience deals with the rhetoric of persuasion. Sapience involves the Hegelian dictum: first a thesis, then an antithesis and finally a synthesis. First comes the protest or struggle, then comes the persuasion and finally darts the conclusion. Let’s look at the Palestinian problem from Sapience. They have reached a stage of Hegel’s thesis and antithesis. They are yet to reach a synthesis. Sapience looks at structures that create binary oppositions.

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Source by Bose Anand

Gerundizing in English

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Gerundizing

In English, gerundizing is the process of adding ‘ing’ to the verb. When verbs are gerundized, they function as partly verbs and partly nouns. In other words, by adding ‘ing’ to any verb, the verb changes its function to be a partly noun and partly verb.

Functions of gerunds

1) As subjects of sentences

Gerunds or gerundized verbs when used as subjects of sentences often put at the beginning when focusing on activity as the subject of conversation.

Smoking is dangerous.

Reading EzineArticles is interesting.

Writing articles needs a lot of practice.

Playing tennis is good for your health, and good fun!

Learning a foreign language is not always difficult.

The shooting of the hunter was terrible.

Flying a plane can be dangerous.

The teaching of the doctrine is misleading the people.

Traveling is fun.

The introducing of the new software was clear enough to understand.

2) As an object of a verb

Gerunds here function as objects of verbs. In English there are certain verbs which are gerundized functioning as objects of verbs.

The following are verbs that are commonly followed by the gerund form: like, fancy, dislike, hate, love, abhor, disgust, stop, cease, continue, mind, admit, deny, advise, avoid, consider, delay, cancel, discuss, enjoy, finish, keep, postpone, suggest, recommend, regret, participate, risk, tolerate and go, etc.

Examples:

I like swimming. My sister fancies cooking. We dislike gossiping. I hate waiting especially for nothing. We love dancing. Anita abhors provoking. We disgust plagiarizing. Why do you stop trying? Indonesia decided to cease firing the Malaysian troops. We continue trying our best. Would you mind opening the door? We admit making mistakes. You deny stealing the money? We advise closing the site asap. Helen avoided meeting Pricila. Don’t ever delay doing things. They have discussed meeting in the next meeting. Do you enjoy surfing? Have you finished doing your project? Keep trying. Don’t postpone writing your thesis. We suggested/ recommended postponing the program. We regret being unable to come. We participated finalizing the proposal.We risk continuing the plant. Don’t tolerate ceating in any game. Harry avoided paying late fees on the account. Denny denied knowing anything about the corruption. I postponed making a decision until Monday. She regrets not studying French in college. Hanna enjoys listening to classical music. Jason admits spending too much money on toys. Let’s go swimming!

3) After certain expressions (can’t help, can’t resist, can’t bear, can’t stand, can’t stop, can’t persist)

Gerunds are used after the expressions such as can’t help, can’t resist, can’t bear, can’t stand, can’t stop, can’t persist,

Examples:

I can’t stop falling in love with English. Jenny can’t resist eating chocolate mints. His words can’t bear repeating. Terry can’t stand staying in Indonesia because it’s hot. I can’t stop wanting the woman..

4) Phrasal verbs with particle prepositions are Gerundized

Gerunds are used after phrasal verbs (verbs followed by particle prepositions), in other words, gerunds are used with phrasal verbs that end in prepositions. Phrasal verbs are verb phrases which are made up of two or more words, generally the verb plus one or two prepositions such as: think of, look into, call off, get over, figure out, look forward to, put off, take over, stop off, deal in, object to, ccount on, rely on, etc.

Examples:

Have you thought of moving to the country? Never put off doing things. The coach called off practicing for the day. Tom looked into finding a new job.She took a long time to get over losing her dog. I looked into buying a new computer. Sally succeeded in geting over losing weight. We look forward to meeting you again at ezinearticles.com. Why don’t you take over overseeing the project? Terry stopped off shopping for the family. We deal in distibuting gas in the country. We object to manipulating the data. The man just counts on collecting garbage to live his family. Don’t rely on using the dictionary for meanings.

5) As objects of prepositions

In English verbs are gerundized as objects of prepositions: in, on, at, for, by, of, off, from, into, out of, oppositte, etc. This means that whenever a verb follows a preposition, the gerund or ‘ing’ form of the verb is used. This is especially important for adjective + preposition combinations and phrasal verbs (shown above) which generally end in prepositions.

Examples:

In making a decision there are many things to consider. On checking the goods, we found something wrong with the goods. We need to discuss before we arrive at making up our mind. I am here for attending a writing workshop. By following the formula, we can make money fast. Instead of staying I’d rather go to theatre. We have just come from visiting the factory.

6) Certain Adjectives with certain prepositions take Gerunds

In English gerunds are used after certain adjectives with certain preposition combinations which include: afraid of, good/bad/poor, excellent for (in, at), interested in, different from, tired of, astonished/surprised at (by), sure about/of, capable of, slow in, similar to, to be/get accustomed to/used to, similar to, etc.

Examples:

I am afraid of waking up my father. Some of the cadets are bad at spelling words in English. You are good at speaking English. They are poor at pronouncing words in Indonesian. These vegetables are exccelent forimproving your health. I am interested in writing articles on music and sports. Are you afraid of climbing the mountain? The tour guide is tired of leading the tour. John is good at speaking Dutch. Sally was afraid of walking alone in the dark. They are capable of solving their complicated problem. We are used to/accustomed to working late at night.

7) As objects of possessive adjectives

Verbs are gerundized after possessive adjectives such as my, your, his, her, our, their, its, Mary’s, John’s, etc.

Examples:

Thank you for your coming. Do you like my coming to your office? I don’t mind his asking me about our business. We always hope his visiting to our site. We didn’t object to their interrupting us during the discussion. I expected Mary’s coming yesterday. John’s questioning may be right. I don’t understand its teaching us about the game.

8. As objects of objective pronouns

After objective pronouns such as me, you, him, her, them, her, him, us, it, Mary, Tom, etc. verbs are gerundized too.

I disagree with him suggesting such an idea. I like him coming over to my office. Do you like me coming to your office? I don’t mind him asking me about our business. I expected Mary coming yesterday. I don’t understand him behaving so rudely to us.

8) need, want, require+ Gerund

When verbs need, want and require are gerundized, they may have a passive infinitive meaning.

Examples:

The flowers are dying so they need watering (They need to be watered). The floor is dirty so it requires cleaning (It requires to be cleaned). The deck wants painting (It wants to be painted).

9. no use and worth + Gerund

Gerunds are also used after such expressions as no use, no value, no essence, no ground, no excuse, no reason and (not) worth.

Examples:

There is no use crying over the spilt milk. It is (not) worth doing such an activity anymore, it’s useless. There is no ground complaining about the defeat. There is no excuse coming late again.

10. No+ Gerunds to make prohibitions in English.

In English when making prohibitions with “no”, gerunds are often used or the verbs are gerundized.

Examples:

No smoking (smoking is not allowed) No parking! No tresspassing! No provoking! No overtaking!

In summary, English verbs are gerundized by adding ‘ing’ to any verb, and the verbs gerundized change their functions to be partly nouns and partly verbs. Gerunds can function in English as subjects of sentences, as objects of verbs, of prepositions, of possessive objectives, of possessive adjectives, etc.

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Source by Saut Halomoan

Writing a Woman’s Life or Biography

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Reading about women authors via their biographies or through comments made by them is often more revealing than their books. Carolyn Heilbrun in her book Writing a Woman’s Life (more like a dissertation in its early chapters) states that to really know a female author well enough to write her biography, you must go beyond the dissection of her fictional works and get to know her from her correspondence with friends and peers. This is especially true for women authors before 1970, since Heilbrun considers that year “the beginning of a new period in women’s biography” and 1973 as the turning point for “modern women’s autobiography.” Nancy Milford’s Zelda is the biography and May Sarton’s Journal of a Solitude is the “watershed in women’s autobiography.”

The author makes a strong case about famous women writers, such as Louisa May Alcott, the Bronte sisters and Jane Austen, having to tow the line of acceptable society prior to that time. The success of many of these women (George Sand, George Eliot) was often made possible by using a pseudonym and by conforming their female characters to the reigning conventions. Thus, most female writers before 1973 were coerced into depicting their sex as wives and mothers and doing it as a matter of course, because there were no other avenues open to them other than to drive their characters to the brink of insanity. By pursuing the author outside of her writings, a biographer may retrace the chronological details of the author’s developing emancipation.

The book becomes more interesting in its last forty pages, when the author discusses the marriage relationship and suggests that for marriage to succeed, the two individuals must have a friendship beyond the initial passion that attracted them. They must be flexible and respectful of each other’s changing and unearthing of self. This discovery of self happens much later for women, who tend to postpone their own desires in order to carry on in the role of wife, mother and, as seen in the last few decades, as partial providers, as well.

The end of Writing a Woman’s Life discusses how women seek their “quest” in life. Heilbrun uses herself as an example. She put off writing her detective series to avoid the censure of the academic community. She was the first tenured female professor at a major ivy league school. Had she written the series under her own name instead of Amanda Cross, she would never have gotten tenure. And even with the pseudonym, she chose a woman detective, who was wealthy, married and beautiful. Through the series she “set out on a quest (the male plot), she became a knight (the male role), she rescued a (male) princess.” The secrecy of her mystery series allowed her some control of her destiny and allowed her to do things she could not in her professional life. In essence it let her recreate herself.

One of the more profound statements in Writing a Woman’s Life comes toward the end of the book. “Most of us women, I think, transform our need to be loved into a need to love, expecting, therefore, of men and of children, more than they, caught in their own lives, can give us.” When women have power (money) and room of their own, they will create a quest story to replace the old marriage plot.

And age is often the incentive that pushes a woman from fearing or hiding into trying and doing important things. For those who fear the loss of looks and whose hourglass figure has more and more sand collecting at the bottom, the author states, “For a woman to grow fat in middle age is to dissociate her personhood from her feminine appeal.” An Isak Dinesen character states, “Women, when they are old enough to have done with the business of being women, and can let loose their strength, must be the most powerful creatures in the world.” Aging can be freeing and makes one think of the possibilities.

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Source by Linda K Murdock

Seven Ways Reading Affects Writing

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1. Readers understand words

Readers understand words because they have read how sentences and words fit together, the order of a sentence and the placement of words. They understand the sentences because they have seen these words and similar sentences before. They can then use them in writing or compose similar ones.

2. Readers understand the structure of the Language

Readers have seen the structure so many times that they can readily understand how to construct great sentences. They can see that writers use different kinds of sentences to make Writing more interesting like starting out with a question. Then the author proceeds to answer it. A variety of sentences like Declarative, Interrogative, Imperative and Exclamatory make Writing much more delightful to read. Readers also see that some sentences are long and some are shorter. By varying sentence length, it keeps the Writing more lively.

3. Readers understand grammar

Good grammar only makes sense to readers. They know how different parts of speech should fit together. For example: they know in the sentence “The boy rides his bike,” that rides goes with a single subject noun. Thus, they understand subject-verb agreement. Understanding good grammar really can assist the reader in Writing. They are much more able to write complex and simple sentences.

4. Readers understand thoughts of the writer

Good readers understand the thoughts of the writer because they have read and thought along with the authors. This helps them in Writing their own compositions. This is a tremendous asset in Writing. When you read, you follow the author’s train of thought. It is so natural.

5. Readers have a great vocabulary

Because of their tremendous reading, readers have a great vocabulary. This will certainly help in Writing. They will use a variety of words, not the same old thing. I have a cousin who was such a wonderful reader. When he wrote his thesis for his doctorate, the words he used were so large and long, one needed a dictionary to look them up. He always beat everyone in Scrabble when he was little, even the adults. No one could outdo him. His vocabulary was extensive.

6. Readers know how to make their writing interesting and exciting

Readers read. They know they don’t like to read “boring” books or articles. They can see how authors use words to paint pictures and make it more interesting and exciting. Redundancy is poor Writing and writers need to stay away from it. Usually good readers are good writers. They go hand in hand. One complements the other.

7. Readers can use creative ways to make people want to read what they wrote

Finally, I would say that good readers can make their Writing creative. People want to read it. It would be a book you can’t put down. You just want to keep reading it until the end. It is like a bait to a fish. I thought The Shack was like that. It had a great story line, the kind that would interest many people. A good reader can do that. I loved it when my students were creative in Writing. Sometimes I would put a sentence or part of a sentence on the board. It was great to see their creativity using that sentence and making an adventurous story from it.

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Source by Miriam Vidas

Writing Essays – The Monster in Faulkner’s Story, A Rose for Emily

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To help you write essays about literature, here’s a little analysis I’ve worked up on William Faulkner’s highly acclaimed short story, “A Rose for Emily” (NOTE: You may want to read and study the story online as you follow my reasoning, here, so create another tab in your browser, then go to Google Search and type in “A Rose for Emily” and be sure to type the quote marks; you can use ALT-TAB to move between the story and this article):

As I’ve pointed out in other articles, every story – whether a short story or a novel – has to have some major change by the end. This change is the most important factor to keep in mind when you analyze and then write essays about any story, whether short or long.

What is that change? Why, a new view reverse, of course – always!

I’ll show you how to use the following three-step new view analysis process on Faulkner’s “A Rose for Emily,” which you can then use on any short story –

#1 – At the beginning of a short story, a strong value statement, an old view, is given by or about the main character, asserting an evaluation or describing some characteristic, goal, or desire.

As we start this masterful short story, the old view pops right out at us – it’s the very first sentence:

When Miss Emily Grierson died, our whole town went to her funeral: the men through a sort of respectful affection for a fallen monument, the women mostly out of curiosity to see the inside of her house, which no one save an old manservant-a combined gardener and cook-had seen in at least ten years.

Note that I’ve bolded respectful affection. That sounds like a pretty strong value statement, doesn’t it, especially since the “whole town went to her funeral.” Question is, how will that strong positive value about Emily change by the end of the story?

#2 – In the middle of a short story, the old view is supported or undercut with descriptions, conflicts, and resolutions to conflicts that set up the new view at the end.

Now, I’m not going to comment on everything in the story. But did you notice that every section of the story has something to do with the townspeople’s respect for Emily? Sometimes there was even affection along with the respect.

DESCRIPTION: Several descriptions occur in this short story, but one stands out from the rest. In the first section, after the brief introduction, the board of alderman from the town (city councilmen) have come to her mansion to meet with Miss Emily to convince her to pay her taxes, and – They rose when she entered – a small, fat woman in black, with a thin gold chain descending to her waist and vanishing into her belt, leaning on an ebony cane with a tarnished gold head. Her skeleton was small and spare, bloated….

Note that Miss Emily is dressed in black, with a contrasting thin gold chain descending to her waist and vanishing into her belt. At the end of that chain, no doubt, is a watch, which makes a figure eight of the chain with the out-of-sight watch at the end, over her abdomen. Her body is covered in black clothing and she is bloated, both face and abdomen, while her arms and legs are small and spare or thin, like the cane she carries.

We cannot grasp the significance of this description until the new view in the final scene of the story, which I’ll comment on then, of course. Just keep this description in mind, okay? We’ll bring it up again at the end of this discussion.

CONFLICT: In the second section, neighbors complain that bad smells from Emily’s house are contaminating the neighborhood. But the town’s aldermen respectfully refuse to talk to Emily about it, refuse to accuse a lady to her face of smelling bad.

RESOLUTION: To avoid a conflict with Emily about the smell, the aldermen respectfully took it upon themselves to go out at night and sprinkled lime about the grounds and in the cellar of Emily’s house to get rid of the smell. The smell disappears in two weeks.

CONFLICT: Also in the second section, Emily refused for three days to admit that her father had died and wouldn’t let anyone in to take his body to get it ready for burial.

RESOLUTION: The townspeople show respectful pity for Emily by not forcefully entering and taking the body to get it ready for funeral and burying. After three days, their respectful pity finally influences Emily, who literally broke down emotionally and let them in.

CONFLICT: The third section ends in a conflict that Emily has with the town druggist. She asks the druggist for some poison. But because he is required by law to record what the poison will be used for, the druggist keeps trying to get Emily to say what she’ll do with the poison. But Miss Emily just stared at him. No matter what the druggist said, she wouldn’t respond to the question.

RESOLUTION: The druggist gave Emily the poison anyway, in spite of the law. He merely filled in the information himself, For rats, without any input from her. He gave in to Emily out of respect for her social position, no doubt, as we have seen so often.

CONFLICT & RESOLUTION: Toward the end of the fourth section, a minor conflict and resolution occurred and passed quickly on, with Emily winning yet another conflict because of the town’s respectful affection for her: When the town got free postal delivery, Miss Emily alone refused to let them fasten the metal numbers above her door and attach a mailbox to it. She would not listen to them.

In every case of conflict in the story, respectful affection for Emily and respect for her social position is what resolves the conflict that the townspeople have with Emily’s conduct.

#3. At the end of a short story, a new view reverse of the old view is usually revealed.

In section five of the story, at Emily’s funeral, the townspeople wait respectfully until Emily is buried before they break into (which can be viewed as a kind of conflict/resolution, too) the upper room of her mansion, which has been locked for years, probably decades. The room is covered with very fine dust, and they find there a decaying skeleton in the bed, obviously belonging to Homer, Emily’s boyfriend of decades ago.

In the pillow right next to the skeleton is the surprise – they find a deep indentation where someone must have laid their head repeatedly and somewhat recently, because they find there a long strand of iron-grey hair in the indentation – Emily’s hair, without a doubt, since Faulkner has described Emily’s hair as iron grey.

Here’s the new view-the respectful affection of the townspeople at the start of the story must turn around, must reverse to a strong revulsion after they learn that Emily killed her lover and slept with his decaying body through many years, even decades. It takes some kind of a repulsive monster to do something like that!

With that thought in mind, recall the description of Emily in the first section: a small, fat woman in black. While not a perfect match, that description is fairly close to that of a black widow spider. Remember the figure eight – the thin gold chain – ending out of sight on the bloated abdomen? And the spare or thin limbs, with the cane adding a fifth sort of limb, which is one more than half of the eight limbs of a spider? Remember the fat, bloated body? So this view of Emily killing her lover is very like a black widow spider killing her male partner.

Why did the townspeople break into that locked room in the first place? They weren’t sure what was in there, but they expected to find something important there, obviously. And that something provided a new view reverse of respectful affection for Miss Emily, at the very least for the reader, if not for the townspeople, as well.

Now, these sample thesis statements can help give you a some ideas for writing a strong essay on William Faulkner’s superbly crafted short story, “A Rose for Emily:”

  • Faulkner uses his short story,A Rose for Emily, to illustrate the theme that, ‘Human nature can be corrupted when an individual is given too many unearned privileges and too much undeserved respectful affection.’
  • In a surprise ending, William Faulkner’s short story, A Rose for Emily, reveals how a society steeped in a tradition of respect for social position can be so tragically, so ironically wrong.
  • In A Rose for Emily, Faulkner repeatedly uses conflict and resolution to hammer home the respectful affection the townspeople have for Emily-until the end.
  • Descriptive imagery about the mansion in A Rose for Emily adds to the revelation about Miss Emily’s true character at the end, which has been hidden by the house for decades.
  • In A Rose for Emily, the single long strand of iron-grey hair at the end becomes a symbol suggesting Emily killed her boyfriend, which clears up the incidents of the smell, the rat poison, and the disappearance of Homer-not to mention reversing the townspeople’s ever-present respectful affection for Emily.

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Source by William Drew Jr

How to Write Thoughtful Conclusions

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Conclusions give you a chance to leave the reader with a thoughtful closing to a discussion. That’s why it makes sense to write your conclusions as more than a mere restatement of your thesis and a concise retelling of your primary ideas.

Your conclusion should always include a brief summary of your main points, as it will help the reader recall the major ideas you covered. Aside from that, you should use one or more of these instruments to help your piece become more interesting:

  1. Pose a provocative question.
  2. Use a quotation that encapsulates your message.
  3. Make a strong call for action.
  4. Evoke a vivid image in the reader’s mind, using descriptive writing to drive your point home.
  5. Suggest possible consequences that could result from your results or findings.
  6. Leave your reader with a warning.

Things To Avoid

  1. Rushing your conclusion, both in terms of content and grammar. Too many people lose focus towards the end of a paper, looking to wrap it up as quickly as possible. Don’t be one of them. In fact, you should give it more attention, since it’s the last paragraph of the paper that readers will see. Don’t skip the use of an English checking software either.
  2. Starting a new sub-topic. The conclusion is not the place for that. Create a separate paragraph if it’s really necessary.
  3. Concentrating on a minor point of the paper, no matter how interesting it might be.
  4. Qualifying your conclusion by using phrases such as “In my humble opinion.” This just paints your paper in a bad light, destroying the reader’s confidence in your arguments.

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Source by Jane Sumerset

Simple Techniques For Writing an Introduction to Your Story

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Writers struggle with how to write the introduction to a story. If the introduction is dull and unexciting, the reader is apt to put it down, never to even read the second paragraph. If the introduction is engaging and interesting, the reader will want to read further to see what will happen next in the story.

There is no easy way to learn how to write the introduction to a story. The best way to learn is to read how other writers create attention-grabbing and appealing introductions to their stories and use some of the same techniques they employ without copying their style or their words verbatim.

If finding simple ways to write an introduction to your story is keeping you from putting that burning story inside you down on paper, try these simple techniques.

Begin By Telling a Brief Story

Many writers begin their introductions with an anecdote or a brief story that grabs the reader’s attention. Be sure the anecdote or brief story introduces clearly the story that comes after it.

Describe a Scene in an Interesting Way

Describing a scene is a good way to arouse the reader’s curiosity. The reader will be intrigued by the setting and wonder what happened at the scene and why the scene was significant to the whole story. However, the scene must be interesting and relate to the story that follows.

Begin with a Quotation

When using a quotation, make sure to use a quotation that is provocative and says something significant. The story that follows should explain the meaning of the quotation or the purpose for using it in your story. Your story must build upon the quotation so that readers will want to read further to find out what you have to say.

Begin with a Definitive Statement

Most introductions begin with a general beginning and follow with specific and concrete details about the subject. Write a definitive statement that simply states your stance on an issue. Then follow the statement with interesting and/or factual information that will provoke agreement or disagreement from the reader.

Pose a Question

A good way to introduce a subject is to use a question. Sometimes questions can be answered immediately following the question and then proceed on to the story, or the question can be left at the beginning to be pondered over until later in the story. The writer can answer the question at any point in the story, but the question should be answered at some point before the story ends.

Use Contrast

Another way to introduce your subject is to state a commonly held belief or statement of fact and follow quickly with a contrasting view. You present a situation that your readers may agree with, and after a paragraph or two, you assert that you will take an opposing or differing view. This type of introduction compels the reader to take a stance on the issue.

One very important point to remember about introductions is to include a clearly defined thesis statement that indicates to the reader the overall point you are going to make in your story. The thesis statement must be stated clearly in the introductory paragraph (it is most effective as the last sentence). Be sure that with any of the techniques you use to introduce your story, you conclude the introductory paragraph with a strong, well-developed, and thoughtful thesis statement.

Now you are off to a good start. The introduction is no longer a roadblock to writing that burning story inside you.

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Source by Katrina Williams

Let Your Introduction Chapter Give a Lasting Expression

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First impression is the last impression! This adage goes well with researchers. They should always keep it in my mind that the first chapter of their thesis or their dissertation, which is the Introduction Chapter, is pivotal for their success. So they should try to make it most reader-friendly as it is the chapter which will pass on their research motive to readers.

There are many students who find it challenging to develop effective content for this chapter. However, with a little grit and determination, it is not that difficult to mark a lasting expression in the mindset of readers.

Thus, the first job, in this effort, is to set the right base. The Introduction Chapter should set the base of the study by providing basic information which a reader requires. The initial thing which one should keep in mind is to give the background of the research and to explain about the problem and its practical implications. Thereafter, the researcher should discuss his methodology, principles and research design briefly to set the tone for research in reader’s mind.

The readers should also be well-informed about researcher’s goals and hypotheses as it will help them to understand his study’s findings and applications.

Secondly, the readers should know the aim and objective of the study. They should know why the researcher has chosen this study. So they should be made aware of the specific purpose which the study has adopted through this paper.

Therefore, it is important to maintain the orientation and focus on study. To bring in clarity for readers, the statement of researcher’s purpose or topic of subject should be written somewhere in first few lines of the chapter.

Thirdly the importance of the subject should be discussed. The readers should be made aware of different facts that make the papers important. They should also know about related researches that other people have been doing in the past. So try to add a context in the paper. Also, a background should be set for the study that is being pursued.

Explain why this project has been selected. Try picking up some landmark studies that are related and linked to the study. This can highlight the importance of the research in the wider scheme.

Lastly but not the least, certain relevant issues that exist in papers should always be addressed. If they seem important, they should be addressed and the readers should be informed about them.

Thus, the conclusion of this article is that the first chapter of your research that is the introduction chapter should be organised well to make a lasting impression in reader’s mind.

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Source by Rohit K.

Visual Evolution of Writing Systems Towards Latin Alphabet – A Hypothesis

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1 The writing represents speech notion

Speech and writing originated independently of each other. Human speech probably appeared long time before writing. Earliest writings developed from drawings. They were of visual origin, as pictographs, ideograms. As time went by, writings were spatially arranged sequentially in lines, corresponding to the sequential property of speech in time domain. As writing systems evolved in the alphabetic direction, writings and speech associated with each other tighter and tighter, continuing to present day. The alphabets lost pictographic property. As alphabetic systems have replaced their pictographic [1] predecessors and gained prevalence, it seems natural to conclude that the evolution of writing systems is to better represent language sounds. This conclusion is elegant, intuitive, reasonable and basing on facts and researches. It certainly cannot explain some cases, for instance, the Chinese didn’t evolve into alphabet. However, the Chinese characters are blamed to be too complex to represent speech. The modern Chinese writing is more tightly associated with spoken Chinese than ancient Chinese writing does. Moreover, characters have been simplified in mainland China. Chinese writing looks like taking a small step towards representing speech. Little doubts have been casted on this conclusion, although many scholars consider writing as more than simply representing speech. Representing speech seems a destined direction. Let’s be a little skeptical on this natural conclusion.

Without rigorous proof, this conclusion is taken for granted by man due to its intuitiveness and accord to most facts and history of alphabets. Let me now ask some basic questions. Why alphabets better represent sounds than pictographs do? How to determine if a script is good at representing sounds? Are some alphabets better in representing sounds than other alphabets are? Should evolution be attributed to the spoken form, written form or the representing itself? These simple questions are not easy to answer. Why not attribute the evolution of writing to the visual form, then? That can certainly have more clarity and become simple as writing itself is visual creature. Why people still stick to the ‘represent speech’ notion then? Following are some possible reasons. Speech and writing both changed a lot over time. They associated with each other tighter and tighter and are considered same thing – language. Speech is considered primary in language, which is by far meant spoken language. Speech is associated with human nature, while writing is considered an artifact. There are two points. One is they associate with each other. The other is speech is primary. The latter is itself a profound, although taken for granted. Here we take neutral position and won’t try to approve nor reject it. As we have said, speech and writing has independent origins. The link between them is not preexisting. They are set up after longtime use. The resultant connection between writing and speech shouldn’t be taken as the cause for the writing to evolve. Rather, the characteristics of writing should be analyzed to explain how it evolves visually. Then, the speech-writing association’s influence on writing’s evolution should be addressed.

2 Visual evolution of writing

Evolution of writing is reflected in its visual characteristics. We can easily see the salient visual distinction between alphabets and pictographs. Alphabet is a standardized set of letters. They usually comprise tens of letters, and are derived from complex pictographic scripts. Pictographs are complex and huge in amount. It is understandable to think that they have not evolved visually. If evolved visually, why becoming simpler instead of more complex? If writing is taken as visual art, it should evolve towards greater complexity. However, writing is a means of communication, representing and recording knowledge. The clarity, convenience, efficiency and suitability for reading thus become main concern. At the beginning, drawings were to depict something directly, as pictures. They were arranged usually in lines to represent meaning continuously. Apparently, the complex pictographs are not easy to recognize, lowering reading accuracy. It affects the reading fluency since more time is spent fixating at one pictograph before moving to the next. Complex symbols are discarded or simplified to facilitate linear reading. Some symbols had simpler and clearer visual pattern and were more frequently used. Long time passed, only a set of symbols are left and standardized. We call them alphabets. The reduction in number, simplification and standardization facilitate visual manipulation and memorization, leading the alphabets to supersede pictographs. Alphabetic writing is more suitable for reading than pictographic systems. We use the word ‘legibility’ to denote the concept ‘fit for reading’, which we think is the central in evolution.

How legibility takes effect? What is the mechanism, then? In the present world, texts explode. Through internet, one can easily find texts of any subject. The scope of the written world is virtually indefinite. Nonetheless, text still comprises basic individual symbols. Analysis can be done on the symbols and sequence of symbols. By simply analyzing the symbols, we are not overwhelmed by the explosion. These symbols are read and written by human. They have effect on humans via the eyes and brain. Legibility principle originates during reading, and then operates in thinking and writing while visual info is stored and processed in the brain. Although legible symbols can be arranged well and read easier, the visual patterns themselves are not the reason for reading. People read because the reading material reflects real world which is of the reader’s interest. Reading material is existent beforehand. They have to learn and use existing system regardless of its legibility and tend to read the symbols they are familiar [2] with. However, Texts of different degrees of legibility have different effects. Legible writing is easily read, memorized, processed by brain and written out. Legible writing impresses the eyes deeper and operates in the brain more effectively and strongly. More writings of greater legibility are read and produced than those with less legibility. After processing by the brain, the text written out has the tendency of being better patterned than those that are read. That is to say, legible writings have greater power to stimulate one to write. As a result, the writings produced later tend to be more legible than the earlier, changing the appearance of the writing system. Legibility is individual-dependent. Individual’s writing changes are not at the same pace. Change of a writing system is a result of changes made by all individuals’ written works. The appearance of post-change system usually does not differ completely from pre-change system. This evolution is a long time process and might become noticeable after generations.

Legibility principle operates starting from individual symbols, then throughout entire writing system. The recognizability of symbol/word forms, inter-differentiability of symbols, and inter-differentiability of words are the basis of a script’s legibility. Symbols/words are elementary. The strength of a writing system is usually judged on its entirety [3] – its all written works, the area and people it covers, all knowledge it represents etc. The dominant system is not necessarily the most legible. But legibility will exhibit its power as more-legible writing system grows faster. Individual symbols/words are building units of whole system and, basically determine how the whole system looks like and the potential it can expand. Legible symbols/words can be organized better and expand further. Legible system possesses more written works or has the potential to be such. It can grow bigger and thus represent more knowledge, leading to its success. Symbols form words, sentences and eventually a whole system. Rules/grammar develops for word formation and arranging words together. There are also recommended ways of formatting and writing paragraphs, thesis and book, but they haven’t become rules. These rules and recommendations imply the characteristics of larger linguistic units, facilitating reading and expanding legibility from symbol level to phrase, sentence levels and throughout the entire system. As time goes on, more-legible system overpowers/replaces less-legible system.

3 Spoken language’s influence and practical factors

Without spoken language, writing would have definitely evolved differently as it has been.Writing itself is capable of evolving alone. But, in reality, speech influences its evolution significantly. Since they are associated, writing and speech influence each other [4]. Writing and speech have their own characteristics, legibility for writing, pronounceability and comprehensibility for speech. During their interaction, they are affected by each other and in the mean time try to maintain their own characteristics. Almost all present-day writings are pronounceable. That seems evidence that writing represents speech. However, from another angle, we also see that almost all speeches are writable. It should be that they converge from independent origins into tight association, instead of simply one conforming to the other. Convergence is obvious in alphabetic systems but not in pictographic systems. Tighter association leads to greater inter-influence. Tightly-associated speech and writing achieve mutual benefits as writing stimulates more speaking and speech induces more writing. Via association, speech sounds came to be a major source of new word/expression creation. Some new symbols are created or borrowed to represent language sounds. Diacritics [5] are added to change sound value. These changes make writing representing speech better [6]. As speech sounds can be represented by different written symbols/words/phases, the legibility (visual shapes) of symbols/words/phases is pondered over for choosing desired ones. During the interactions between speech and writing, sounds could affect the formation and evolution of writing systems. But the final determinant of its success is the visual legibility, fit for processing, easy to be memorized and systemized. The visual form, instead of association/interaction with spoken language, is the central and deterministic in writing systems evolution. Spoken language works as a bridge between meaning and writing. It is not central in evolution process. On the contrary, it attaches to its writing system for survival, growth and spread. We hypothesize that the writing systems evolve towards more-legible alphabetic systems by means of visual refinement, during interactions with speech sounds.

The evolution is complicated by dozens of practical factors. Firstly, the creation and spread of writing relies on tools, materials, media, such as pen, paper, printing and nowadays computer and internet. Technological advancement has transformed the appearance of writing as well as the way writing is created, exists and spreads. Secondly, being durable, existing written works inevitably resist the writing system reform or new scripts adoption, more written works, stronger resistance. Finally, writing system is used by people and associated with things in a society. Development of writing system therefore has to do with the people and things. Writing system is associated with country, religion, education, economy, law, science, culture and so on. It spreads and grows together with them. Writing system is often designated officially in a country or region. Its changes are thus of regulatory, political and even military concerns. These factors, speech and still other factors complicate writing’s history. Writing possibly doesn’t evolve along a straight line. Nevertheless, in their complex development history, writing systems with greater legibility will be adopted by more people and prevail. It is an extraordinary feat of writing to incorporate all these matters and present visually organized arrangement to humans.

4 The success of Latin alphabet and the future of written English

As the prevailing alphabet of present world, Latin alphabet and its systems exemplify the legibility and speech-writing association. It has been used for writing numerous spoken languages and prevails for many of them, regardless of what sounds the languages possess. Visual feature of its writing systems is responsible for its prevalence.

Not only alphabetic systems superseded pictographic systems, some alphabetic systems have replaced or are overpowering other alphabetic systems. Different alphabets have been hard-tied with their spoken languages. Perhaps all people will say their respective alphabets are best to represent their spoken languages. However, basing on legibility, their writing systems compete to grow for success over others. Latin systems gain momentum in all alphabetic systems, invading other systems. The superiority of Latin systems is in that they have simple and clearly inter-distinguishable letters, syllabic combination of letters and words possessing integrated visual characteristics. Every letter is well shaped with great recognizability. The letters are easily to be systematically arranged. The ascenders and descenders of lowercase alphabets make letter combinations and words more legible. In most cases, the uppercase letters are less legible and had been superseded by lowercase letters, although they represent same sound as lowercase letters do. On the top of Latin systems, English sits. The English’s fit for reading clearly demonstrates writing itself instead of representing speech is crucial for a system to gain advantage, as the English written works expand globally, beating other systems, in various speech communities. With greatest volumes of written works and great legibility, the English writing system has spread around the world, via ways including trade, academics, education, war, colonization and most noticeable nowadays – technological evolution.

Besides direct spread of Latin systems, the Latin alphabet is used to write languages originally written in other scripts (or none), a process called Romanization. Romanization can create new Latin alphabets-based system. For language already written in another script, most people consider Romanized system and original system as the same language, though. That is perhaps due to its direct representing original writing/speech. Although Romanized system is taken as original language, Romanization is in fact Latin alphabet’s expansion. The original language is annexed into Latin systems. Romanized system brings people closer to other Latin systems. Knowing the Romanized system, people are readily to learn other Latin systems. Romanization also brings new words into existing Latin systems, whose speakers use some Romanized words as foreign words, which would enter native vocabulary over time. Romanization continues due to the legibility of Romanized system. As existing Latin systems spread and grow, Romanization goes on to non-Latin system regions. Non-Latin systems are unlikely overpowered by Romanized systems alone, but it seems they would be overwhelmed by the overall expansion of Latin systems.

As representative of Latin systems, English writing system is growing through representing knowledge, recording speech sounds and borrowing, among other means. The trend of English’s dominance is continuing. Written English is used by more and more people in non-native regions and would eventually be adopted by all. English will also be spoken by more people following the spread of written English [7]. Other writing systems may be replaced, Romanized or coexist with English.

Written English is systematic. It has 26 letters, established rules for word-formation and grammar. Will it evolve in fundamental level, i.e. its scripts, lexicon or grammar? Or it will only continue growth basing on current system and rules? In near future, radical change seems unlikely. English has become international language. Without challenge, its basic look would not change. Rather, it would grow upon existing system when other language, culture and new-found knowledge are represented. On the long run, radical change cannot be ruled out. Theoretically, its future can be studied from its visual feature and is governed by legibility principle. In reality, the evolution is now a global process with billions of people’s participation. That is absolutely very complex. It is shaped by writings of every individual.

Notes

[1] Non-sound ‘based’ systems, such as logographic system, often contain many symbols not picture-like. They can be treated like pictographic system in that they also don’t have well-established sign-sound correspondence. We discuss pictographic system. Conclusion can be easily generalized to other non-sound based systems.

[2] People usually feel the familiar system easier to read than unfamiliar ones. Thus, to analyze legibility, familiarity should be taken into account.

[3] Systems of the same script can be different. For instance, we consider English system as a different system from other Latin alphabet-based systems.

[4] Writing’s influence on speech is tremendous.

[5] It is the English alphabets without (or rarely use) diacritics prevails, owing to diacritics usually makes readability worse.

[6] The visual characteristics of alphabets make them fit for representing sounds and can account for the tightness of speech-writing association. Writing evolves visually towards the alphabetic forms which in the mean time associates more tightly with speech than pictographs did.

[7] This is and was probably the case for native English-speaking countries.

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Source by Charley Pein

Masters and Doctorate Literature Review Without Tears

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The literature review is a crucial part of any research. The literature review is vital for two reasons, 1) establish the status quo and 2) identify the gaps in the status quo. Really, it is the gaps we are after. If after a literature review we do not identify a research gap then there really is nothing to proceed.

The researcher may already have a hunch about the gaps, but this must be borne out in the literature review. In other words, realistically, the researcher would likely have an idea of the gap, but it must be demonstrated in the literature review.

When conducting a literature review, the researcher first scans a document. If the content of this document (text, photo, audio, video, etc.) is not related to the area of research, then this document is discarded and the researcher looks at the next document. If the document appears to be relevant, the researcher adds it to a Reference collection where information such as the author, publisher, year, etc. are noted.

Then, reading through the document, the researcher extracts pertinent excerpts. Excerpts must be tagged with one or more codes. Codes are developed according to the idea a set of excerpts convey. As more excerpts are extracted, more codes are created. Thus, excerpts and codes may be created recursively. As more codes are created, the codes are arranged into some form of logical structure so that an idea leaning towards the proposed idea is developed.

As a code is created it must be subjected to the gap analysis. A common gap analysis considers the gap set PICOS (Population, Intervention, Comparison, Outcome and Setting) or PITAM (Population, Intervention, Theory, Analysis, Methodology). If a code has nothing different between its Current and Proposed state, with respect to the gap set, then there is no gap. A code that is not a gap may be dropped from subsequent research. However, its non-significance must be included in the literature review. If a code has at least one difference in the gap set, then there is a gap and the code could be important.

Besides the gap analysis, a code must be tagged Topic, Issue or Scope. Pertinent gaps from the Topic (e.g. drinking green tea), Issue (e.g. body weight) and Scope (e.g. adolsescent girls) can be combined with a modifier to form a research question, e.g. {question: Does} {topic: Drinking green tea} {modifier: reduce} {issue: body weight} {scope: in adolescent girls}? More expressly: Does Drinking green tea reduce body weight in adolescent girls?

If the researcher only takes topic, issue and scope variables that are gaps, then the research question is an original one. Since the question centers on {modifier: reduce} the researcher can immediately look for tests of location, such as a t-test from a list of available test types. The null (Ho) and alternate (Ha) hypothesis follows:

  • Ho: Drinking green tea does not reduce body weight in adolescent girls.
  • Ha: Drinking green tea does reduce body weight in adolescent girls.

Clearly, the modifier determines what type of test is to be conducted. Besides the simple “reduce” other modifiers could be increase, goodness of fit, test of independence, correlation, regression, and a whole lot of other common statistical tests. Additionally, once the test type is known, the data template is known. The data collection can be designed and collected accordingly. The data analysis is also explicitly known. Not much is left for imagination and it can be said that the starting point for the research question is in the literature review.

An illustration of the above literature review method is available here.

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Source by Nicolo Belavendram