Explanatory synthesis essay

Prove/disprove anything or make an argument.★Politics = Barack Obama was not born in the United States, Sarah Palin’s youngest childwasactually her daughter’s baby, etc.★Pop culture = Elvis is still alive, Paul McCartney (or Avril Lavigne) died andwas replacedby an imposter, etc.★Science = The moon landing was faked, the Earth is flat, etc.★Current

events = Almost anything related to COVID-19Suggested Talking Points●Background information about yourrumor: What is the rumor? When did it start? Is itstill going? How well-known is/was it? What effects has it had,if any? This informationshould be in your introduction so your audience understands your topic before youmoveinto the explanation in the body paragraphs.●What type of rumor is it? How can it be classified? What is itspurpose or goal?●What makes it a “good” rumor? (Good as in successful, not as in benevolent orbeneficial for theworld.)●Why/how was it spread? What is it tapping into in the people who believe and spreadit?●How couldthis rumor have been combated? Use specific strategies from the articles,don’t make up yourown.RECOMMENDED WRITING PROCESS1.Examine the writing assignment and determine your purpose: toexplain societalbehavior2.Ask questions to identify relationships among the articles we have read3.Choose onerumor to focus on and apply the sources to it4.Begin drafting, returning to sources for paraphrases, quotations,and summaries5.Revise and edit (including, but not limited to, the mandatory in-class peer review andrevisionworkshops)TIPS AND HINTSDetermine how your sources help us understand the rumor. Let’s imagine thatyou areinterested in using Goleman and Knapp to examine the popular rumor that Elvis is still alive.Begin byasking yourself, what statements about the rumor would each author make? What aresome main ideas andrelevant key terms from each source worthy of paraphrase andquotation? Is any information from Goleman indirect opposition to the concepts introduced byKnapp? Are there places where Goleman might agree withKnapp about certain aspects of therumor? Based upon this evidence from your sources, how can we explainthe creation, spread,and goals of this particular rumor?Your purpose is to be informative, NOT PERSUASIVEOR ARGUMENTATIVE. It is your goal topresent facts with objectivity, so you must avoid opinion. Instead, relyupon the informationpresented in your readings in order to explain how and why your chosen rumor caught onwiththe public the way it did. Think of it more in terms of a news report than an editorial.Your thesis statementshould be descriptive and non-persuasive. If it helps, think about yourexplanatory synthesis thesis as the mostobvious statement you can make about therelationship between our readings and your chosen rumor. Anexample: “The rumor that Elvisis still alive shows how people can interact with and respond to information theydo not know to be true, which is societal behavior that many scholars agree exists but have different ways of explaining.”

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