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Ceremony and The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian address many issues that Native Americans must still confront today, including, but not limited to, the following: cycles of poverty perpetuated by the reservation system, the exploitation of natural resources on Native lands, and the reality of racism from both outside and within Native communities. For this essay, you will select a topic that interests you, and then compose a sustained research paper that incorporates the principles of summary/paraphrase and argumentation developed in the first essay and adds outside research (5-7 pages). Keep in mind that your topic must be specific to a Native American community or communities, and remember that the novels we have read are only a springboard for thinking about issues facing Native communities; your essay should not reference either of the novels as sources. Instead, your essay must reference at least 4 nonfiction sources.

Possible Topics

  • Land rights & the exploitation of natural resources (e.g. the Dakota Access Pipeline, uranium mining on Southwestern reservations, etc.)
  • Unemployment on reservations
  • Alcoholism on reservations
  • Sexual violence against Native women
  • Mass incarceration and policing of Native Americans
  • Lack of access to quality K-12 education on reservations
  • Equity gaps for Native American students in higher education
  • You may select your own topic, but you must contact me for topic approval. Please note that poverty is too broad a topic for such a short paper.

Structure

Your essay should include an introduction (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site. that introduces the topic and ends with a clearly worded, 1-2 sentence thesis statement. (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site. Each supporting paragraph (there should be at least 3) should begin with a strong topic sentence (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site. and should incorporate evidence, including direct quotations from one or more of the assigned articles. Direct quotations should be incorporated using the quotation sandwich method (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site. and proper MLA in-text citations (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.. The essay should also contain a strong conclusion (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.. The final page of the document should consist of a Works Cited (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site. page. Tips for formatting electronic sources can be found here (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site..

Formatting Tips

Your document should:

  • Be a minimum of 5 pages in length
  • Be typed and double-spaced, in Times New Roman font, size 12
  • Have 1-inch margins
  • Include a properly formatted heading and a title
  • A properly formatted Works Cited page (see the sample provided in the instructions document for Essay 2 and review the resources available at the Purdue OWL (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.).

Essay 2 Rubric

Requirements

Strong

Average

Needs Improvement

Argument: The paper advances a thoughtful argument that utilizes the argumentation skills described The Norton Field Guide to Writing.. The essay includes a clearly worded thesis statement that explains why the topic selected is important for non-Native Americans to understand. Each paragraph has an argumentative topic sentence with at least one subsequent quotation and analysis of that evidence to help prove the topic sentence, which all helps prove the thesis. The essay also includes reference(s) to at least 4 outside sources. The conclusion demonstrates the thesis’s significance.

Writing: The writing is formal and polished with few grammatical/spelling/usage errors. In particular, the essay will demonstrate a strong grasp of comma usage and sentence structure.

Organization & Context: The paper logically organized and does not provide unnecessary details.

Presentation: The paper follows MLA formatting with double-spacing, a heading, and approximately 5-7 pages of text. The paper is presented in 12-point Times New Roman (including the header) with 1″ margins. All in-text citations are properly formatted, and the final page of the document contains a properly formatted Works Cited page that includes all sources referenced (which includes those that were summarized and/or paraphrased) in the essay.

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