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Rose for Emily

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Example of a thesis and partial outline for Ben Button essay.

Assignment: Select one of the topics satirized in the short story, “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button,” to analyze in an argument essay. Among some of the topics that we discussed in class are aging-vanity, social climbing and appearances, the medical profession, marriage, and school rivalry. In your essay, use and explain quotes that illustrate the satire you are analyzing. Explain the satire in terms of when the time the story was written (around 1922) and if the satire is still relevant today.

THESIS: Fitzgerald, who attended Princeton University, satirizes Ivy League schools, Yale and Harvard universities, for their emphasis on maintaining a proper appearance and revered reputation, and the school rivalry between them, manifested by sports.

I. Button is refused admittance to Yale after he had passed his exam because of his unacceptable appearance and how that could hurt the school’s reputation.

A. The registrar is outraged at Button, who does not appear to an acceptable Yale freshman, and throws him out of the office and school. B. Fitzgerald further criticizes the school’s attitude by using irony when he named the registrar, Mr. Hart, who appears heartless, calling Button a lunatic. C. To show just how extreme the school revered its reputation, Fitzgerald has nearly everyone in the university, from freshman, the football team to professors’ wives, run him off the campus. 1. To illustrate the school rivalry, the angry mob shouts at him to go to Harvard, preferring to send the perceived “lunatic” to Harvard than accept him at Yale.

Note that A, B, C, support I, and that I supports the thesis.

With a well thought out sentence outline, most of your work is down when you write your essay, since you will be able to incorporate these or similar sentences into your essay.

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