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Summer II, 2016
Due Wednesday, August 3 by 11:59 PM
Topic: Jews in Central and Western Europe were disproportionately upwardly mobile and successful after Emancipation (during the Haskalah), moving from poverty to the middle and upper classes at much greater rates than poor Christians in the same societies. Why do you think that happened? What aspects of Haskalah Jewish religion and/ or culture contributed to their greater success?
You will write a 2-3 page (500-750 word), double-spaced essay, including in-text citations that show where the information came from. Be specific. Use a thesis statement and a conclusion. Do not use any outside sources without prior permission. RESPONSES THAT USE UNASSIGNED SOURCES WILL BE SEVERELY DOWNGRADED.
• Answer all parts of the question. I recommend that you outline the essay to ensure that you have done so.
• Keep your own personal religious beliefs out of the paper.
• Avoid a lot of “I” statements, like “I think” or “I believe.” The reader can assume that to be the case, and it drags down the writing.
• Be specific with your supporting information. Use citations for paraphrased information, as well as for direct quotes.
• Use a thesis statement and a conclusion. Don’t begin your paper with a truism/ something incredibly obvious.
o “History is complicated.” “
o People have always had leaders.” “
o The Muppets are most sensational, inspirational, and celebrational.”
• Proofread in great detail.
• Use formal tone (e.g. no contractions, no conversational style).
• When writing, distinguish between fact and claim. For example “Moses parted the Red Sea” can’t be proven, so “According to Exodus 14:21, Moses parted the Red Sea” is better.
When writing papers for this class, please keep the following guidelines in mind. If you follow these rules of organization and grammar, your writing will be clearer and more concise, and your essay will flow more easily. Your writing skills will affect your grade, so please write carefully. Please do not take this personally – I have compiled this list on the basis of student papers that I have graded in the past.
• A standard-length paragraph contains 3-5 sentences. A general guideline is that paragraphs should not take up more than 2/3 of a page.
• Don’t keep restating the same information.
• Be consistent in your use of tenses, and keep history in the past tense. It’s the past, after all.
• Vary sentence length and structure within paragraphs.
2. Proofread and run spellcheck!
• Spellcheck will make sure that all of your words are actual words, though not that they are the correct words.
• If you think Spellcheck is enough, watch this Taylor Mali clip (warning: slightly dirty): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OonDPGwAyfQ
3. Sentence Structure: Grammar
• When referring to the same subject, make sure that the number and gender you use are consistent and appropriate.
• Do not begin sentences with “but”, “and”, or “so”. Instead, use “However,” “As well” or “Also,” and “In order to.”
• All pronouns must have clear antecedents. It needs to be clear who “he” is when you refer to “him.” Be specific, concise, and clear.
• Do not put an apostrophe in a word that is not possessive. The plural of “rabbi” is “rabbis,” not “rabbi’s.”
• If you are unsure where to use commas, look it up on a grammar site or in a grammar book. Do use a comma after a prepositional phrase that begins a sentence.
4. Sentences: Style:
• Don’t use a lot of qualifiers (e.g. somewhat, quite), or superlatives (the best or most of something). Have opinions, but avoid the written equivalent of shouting them.
• Avoid colloquialisms and too-casual language. Don’t write “Based off…” or “Back in the day,” for example.
• Use active voice. Try not to use the verb of being (is, are, were) if you can help it – this will make your writing more interesting.
• For possessives, try to say “the person’s thing” rather than “the thing of the person”
• Try not to repeat the same distinctive word or phrase close together, in or between sentences. However, beware of misusing the thesaurus. Words listed as synonyms often have slightly different connotations. If you use a thesaurus and don’t know what the word’s connotations are, it is clear to the person reading (and grading) your essay that you are trying to use words you don’t understand. This lowers your grade.
• AVOID CONTRACTIONS. They are informal.
• “Its” denotes possession. “It’s” is a contraction for “it is.”
• The person speaking implies. The person listening or reading infers.
• “All this tells us…” is wrong. “All of this suggests that….” is correct.
• Avoid second person in the form of “you can not use the Hebrew Bible for……” That is too casual.
• Avoid colloquialisms in formal papers.
• Use a title page – it does not count in the number of required pages, though, and neither does the works cited/ bibliography page.
• Use “different from….” instead of “different than….”.
• Avoid “…try and do something.” Instead, use “…try to do something.”
• Choose APA or MLA formatting, but include page numbers in all citations.
• Essays must be properly cited, or you are plagiarizing and will fail the paper. This means that you must:
• Include all sources used in the works cited section at the end of the paper.
• Enclose direct quotes in quotation marks and cite the source as in-text citation (author year:pages). Include author and page number. If you use more than one source by the same author, include author, year, and page number.
• Cite all ideas taken from an author in the same way as a direct quote, but without the quotation marks. This means that all paraphrased information from a source must be attributed to that source. If an entire paragraph has the same source, you can put the citation at the end of the paragraph, but if it comes from different pages, cite the individual pieces of information.
• Biblical quotes are to be cited as “ book chapter#:verse#”. For example, Genesis 2:3 is Genesis, chapter 2, verse 3. Make sure you check on the biblical citations, especially if you have memorized portions of the Bible.
• Articles or chapters in an edited volume must be cited under the author, not the editor – this includes the articles in Holtz’ book – he didn’t write most of them.
• If you have any questions, please feel free to email me about them.
• Here is a good website for citation instructions, beginning with number 32: http://www.asor.org/pubs/basor/documents/BASORContributorInstructions.pdf
• Or this, beginning on page 5: http://www.plagiarism.org/assets/downloads/AAA_StyleGuide_2009.pdf
• If you would like to look up grammar rules (e.g. proper use of commas or apostrophes), here is a good site: http://www.grammarbook.com/default.asp
• The Purdue Owl is a good resource for writing, and it does have instructions for citation, but not in this style. https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/
Summer II, 2016
Due Wednesday, August 3 by 11:59 PM
Topic: Jews in Central and Western Europe were disproportionately upwardly mobile and successful after Emancipation (during the Haskalah), moving from poverty to the middle and upper classes at much greater rates than poor Christians in the same societies.