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Monster Theory 7 Thesis Statement

We live in a time of monsters. Monsters provide a key to understanding the culture that spawned them. So argue the essays in this wide-ranging and fascinating collection that asks the question, What happens when critical theorists take the study of monsters seriously as a means of examining our culture?

In viewing the monstrous body as a metaphor for the cultural body, the contributors to Monster Theory consider beasts, demons, freaks, and fiends as symbolic expressions of cultural unease that pervade a society and shape its collective behavior. Through a historical sampling of monsters, these essays argue that our fascination for the monstrous testifies to our continued desire to explore difference and prohibition.

Contributors: Mary Baine Campbell, Brandeis U; David L. Clark, McMaster U; Frank Grady, U of Missouri, St. Louis; David A. Hedrich Hirsch, U of Illinois; Lawrence D. Kritzman, Dartmouth College; Kathleen Perry Long, Cornell U; Stephen Pender; Allison Pingree, Harvard U; Anne Lake Prescott, Barnard College; John O'Neill, York U; William Sayers, George Washington U; Michael Uebel, U of Virginia; Ruth Waterhouse.

Transcript of Creating Monster Thesis Statements (Narrated)

Creating Monster Thesis Statements
Thesis statements are often the scariest part of any college essay. They represent the most important sentence of your paper and are frequently the most critiqued sentence by many professors. This presentation will provide you with the tips necessary to create a monster thesis statement (in a good way).
Thesis Statements: Don't be Scared
A thesis is simply the main argument/point of your essay. Typically found in the last sentence of your first paragraph, your introduction paragraph introduces your reader to your topic before ending on your main argument. While a thesis statement is, in theory, quite simple, there is more than meets the eye to crafting a strong thesis.
What's a thesis?
Here a few quick tips when crafting a thesis statement:

• A thesis is usually a well-developed sentence
• A thesis is a specific argument
• A thesis is usually debatable in some way
• A thesis attempts to broach something new about the topic

Thesis Do's
Your assignment sheet is a crucial resource in figuring out how to construct your thesis. Not only should your thesis answer your assignment’s requirements, but you can potentially integrate aspects of your assignment sheet within your thesis.
Once you have a topic, you can ask the following questions about your topic to narrow to your thesis statement:

• What are three aspects of your topic that you find interesting?
• What is the “elephant in the room” or tensions within your topic?
• What is the majority opinion on your topic and how can you refute it?
• What are the future implications of your topic?
• How can you look your topic through a specific analytical lens (social class, gender, race, etc.)?

While these tips provide you with some insight into what a thesis looks like, there are several common errors that you should avoid when crafting a thesis:

• A thesis is never a question
• A thesis is not an obvious fact or statement
• A thesis is neither a very short sentence or a very long sentence
• A thesis is usually not overly direct (e.g., avoid writing “in this paper, I will be arguing”)
• A thesis does not contain quoted material

If you are still struggling with crafting your thesis, one strategy you can employ is waiting until the very end to compose your thesis. That way, you already know what your paper is arguing and can match your thesis accordingly.

We hope that this presentation helped combat the monsters that are thesis statements. If you ever have further questions, please meet with a writing specialist in the Academic Writing Center (Langsam Library 401 N). For more info, check out our website at
Thesis Don'ts
Let’s look at examples of not-so-monstrous thesis statements. How can we make them more monstrous?
1. Inequalities in society lead to problems in the school systems.
Inequalities in society are reflected in schools, most notably in the technological resources afforded to children in the inner-cities.
2. The Internet has a great influence on modern society.
The Internet’s influence on society has reduced digital natives’ engagement physical texts, which has negatively affected the level of engagement that young people have with information.
3. World War II was a global conflict that involved millions of causalities.
World War II was more of a product of economic factors instead of its common characterization as a struggle between good and evil.
Capital punishment should be abolished in our society in favor of more humane modes of rehabilitation.
4. The question we should ask is should we end capital punishment?
5. In this paper, I will argue that online classes are the future of education.
Due to the growth of the technological society, online courses are the future of education.
Look to Your Assignment Sheet
Narrowing Questions
Thesis for Last?
The Academic Writing Center

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