In his famous “An Essay on the Principle of Population“(1798), the English economist Thomas Malthus argued that, since geometric growth of population outstrips arithmetic growth of the food supply, we actually need poverty, disease, and starvation to restore the balance. While this theory was popular in the nineteenth century, very few would accept it today.
Point out the major developments in science, economics, and government which, since the time of Malthus, have counteracted his argument.
An Essay on the Principle of Population
Today many people speculate in real estate, especially around large cities like Toronto and Vancouver. How is it done?
First consult a real estate agent or someone you know who has profited from real estate.
Focus, then write a brief outline to establish the order of your process. Now do the first draft, leaving whitespace.
Perhaps the act of writing has uncovered steps you had forgotten; add them.
In your next draft make sure to define technical words your audience may not know, and add any missing transitions between steps.
Does a point lack a good example? Add it. Is a passage off-topic or a phrase or word unnecessary? Delete it.
Finally, test your prose aloud before publishing the final copy.
For one week read the international news feed from your favorite news site, paying special attention to reports that have implications for Third-World children.
Choose one event or issue that arouses either your approval or your indignation, then respond to it in an essay.
Using evidence from the article, make an inductive argument for your point. Use argumentation and persuasion in the proportion you think most effective.
Think of a job you have had.
Write a page of rough notes about it, then, looking these over, decide how socially useful or useless the job was.
Now write an inductive argument showing the evidence for your conclusion.
After a rapid first draft, examine what you have said: Do the examples support your thesis? If not, change your thesis to reflect what you have discovered while writing.
Are your examples fully enough explained to make sense to the reader? If not, elaborate. Or is there deadwood? Trim it out.
Read your second-to-last version aloud to help fine-tune its style.
Read the final version aloud to the class.
What degree of American influence do you detect in these aspects of Canadian life.
- Computer software
- Eating habits
- Film distribution
- Foreign policy
- Interest rates
- Popular music
- Social services
- Television programming
Identify a group that you believe has been poorly treated by Canadian society (for example the handicapped or disabled, the elderly, native peoples, farmers, immigrants, refugees, single parents, etc.).
Take notes, then write an inductive argument in which you present the evidence that led to your belief.
In your next draft revise to seek an effective balance of argumentation and persuasion.
Now share this draft and apply your classmates’ best advice.
At home, read aloud to detect wordiness and awkwardness. Edit.
Finally, read your good version to the whole class and be prepared to answer questions.
The poet W.H. Auden called the age we’re living in “the Age of Anxiety.” Would you agree? Is there a lot of anxiety in your life? What specific anxieties do you face and what is their effect upon you?
Throughout the history of the world, writers have tried to conceive better worlds than the ones they actually lived in. Look up the word “utopia” in Wikipedia and read about the various attempts at conceiving the perfect society. Do you think these efforts were worth the time and energy the authors put into them? Or do you think the world would have been better off if theses authors had tried to do something concrete to improve the actual world they lived in? Take a position and support it.
Herman Melville referred to civilization as “snivelization.” What do you think he meant? Look up the word “snivel,” digest all of its meanings and then write an essay agreeing or disagreeing with the author of Moby Dick.
Is the big city “a wondrous toy” as the song goes, or is it a hill of swarming ants? Is it a creative showcase for a country’s talent and skill or is it a drain on the energies of millions of people who must struggle for survival from day to day? Can it be both? Is it something else? What does the city mean to you? Describe your view of the city in specific detail.