Have you ever noticed that major disagreements so often come down to the definition of words?

Have you ever noticed that major disagreements so often come down to the definition of words? Think about the current hot-button issues—”marriage,” “torture,” “socialism”, “life.”
Write an argumentative essay on a controversial topic that primarily uses a definition argument.
• Choose a controversial topic (off-shore drilling, online privacy, gay marriage, health care, etc.).
• Build your argument about this topic based on your unique definition of the main topic or issue.
• Your argument will need to consist of at least three criteria/features that support and help define
your definition of your topic. Here are some things to include:
• Your overall claim
o Example:Waterboardingistorturebecause…
• Why establishing this definition or redefinition is necessary
o Example: In order to be in compliance with the Geneva Convention, we
must define torture in this way . . .
• What criteria gets you to this definition
o Example: Using the rules laid down in the Geneva Convention, considering
the experience of people who have undergone torture such as John McCain, and knowing that it is purposely enacted by people representing the U. S. to cause harm, we can see that waterboarding is torture . . .
• What is at stake/why it matters
o Example: It is important that our society and government clearly define
torture to ensure human rights . . .Research: Use at least three relevant and credible sources. You will need to carefully research this topic and understand it thoroughly (and from multiple points of view) in order to write a successful definition argument in this essay.
• Length: 800-1500 words
• Works Cited/References: You need to use MLA or APA format to cite the sources/information you
use within your essay using in-text citations and create corresponding entries for each source in a Works Cited or References page.dequately addresses the essay prompt, meets minimum requirements for research and word count
• Demonstrates an understanding of rhetoric through balanced use of logos, pathos, and ethos
• Constructs valid arguments using rhetorical modes such as rhetorical analysis, definition,
evaluation, causation, rebuttal, or proposal
• Develops arguments citing numerous examples of evidence and uses research that properly
integrates sources using APA or MLA format

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