Goal:  To incorporate definition, persuasion, narration, and any other modes of development that you see fit in order to provide an extended definition of a group or subculture that you belong to or are closely connected to. 

Step 1           Identify the group or subculture that you wish to define.  For inspiration, think about your hobbies, religious affiliations, gender, extracurricular activities, jobs, ethnicity, and the list goes on.  Maybe you’re a stamp collector, a dog lover, a Catholic female, or an eBay aficionado.  Or maybe you know someone who has a learning disability or who never gets enough credit for all his/her hard work. 

Step 2    Think about how other people think about your group.  How does popular culture portray this group?  In the old sitcom “Married with Children,” the father of the family, Al Bundy, is often shown working in a shoe store and trying to fit shoes that are multiple sizes too small onto women who claim they have the perfect size 6 feet.  Think about why this is.  What does this suggest about how our culture values being petite?  How is the group you’ve chosen portrayed in magazines, films, television shows, video games, etc.?

Step 3              Write an essay showing us showing us your extended definition of your group.   What image would you like people to have of your group?  How can you show your readers that there is more to your group than people often realize.  Look at Ehrlich’s “About Men” for an example.   You are not required to use outside sources, but if you do, make sure you document your sources for any information or conclusions you quote or borrow but summarize in your own words. 

Length: 3 pages minimum, typed, double-spaced, one-inch margins, twelve-point font.

Grading Rubric

Assignment Criteria Essay #1: ProfilePoints PossiblePoints EarnedComments
The topic is significant, interesting, and specific. 10  
The paper is the required length—at least 3 pages typed and double-spaced.  10  
The introductory paragraph creates purpose and focus for the essay. 10  
The body paragraphs work well together: the information is presented in a logical manner. The writer emphasized the most important details about the subject.  Narrative sections are effectively structured.  The writer paces the flow of information so that the reader can follow it easily.  The body paragraphs include the following elements: narration, definition, persuasion.   30  
Transitional devices eloquently connect body paragraphs and ideas within paragraphs to create a “flowing” effect. 20  
The conclusion of the essay ties all the evidence together in such a way that it clinches the writer’s definition. 10  
The writer provides sufficient information for the reader to understand points or ideas raised and their significance. The writer primarily uses facts or observations in presenting the subject. 30  
The writer effectively addresses and responds to popular culture views of this group. 30  
The word choice is precise, specific, concrete, and clear.  The writer avoids colloquialisms.  Phrasing is clear and direct.  The author avoids wordiness. The essay has variety of sentence structures and word choices, creating a strong style.20  
The essay has been edited for punctuation, sentence fragments, comma splices, fused sentences, spelling, and usage errors. 20  
The essay is in proper MLA form.  The essay is double-spaced.  Font size is 12 point.  Font style is Times New Roman. 10  

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