major writing assignment tracking the conversation essay

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FIRST DRAFT: Bring two hard copies to class for workshop on Monday, 9/30

SUBMIT FINAL DRAFT to Canvas by Monday, 10/7, at 11:59 pm

For the past five weeks, we have examined one social problem, Hurricane Katrina, and how it has been investigated from multiple perspectives: journalists, a victim, a filmmaker, and engineers. Each of these groups have communicated their findings using a different genre of writing: journalism, memoir, documentary film, and a scientific report.

Now that you have examined the event from multiple perspectives, reading and taking notes along the way, you are ready to add your voice to the conversationabout what happened in 2005, why it matters, and how to resolve the problem.


Write a 4-5 page essay in which you synthesize what you have learnedfrom the sources you have read and watched and add your voice to the conversation about what happenedin 2005, why it matters, and how best to resolve it in the future.

STEP 1: Methodically examine your notes. If you consider the texts we have read and watched to be in a conversation, what are the different perspectives represented in that conversation? How did various sources understand Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath? Are some sources connected to each other? What is the gist of this national conversation?

STEP 2: Discover your own perspective. What do you have to add to this conversation? How might your own experiences as a reader in 2019 give you insight on this conversation about an event that happened in 2005? What do you think about what you have read and watched?

STEP 3: Using what you learned in Steps 1 and 2, compose a first draft of your essayby class time on Monday, 9/30.Bring two hard copies of this essay to class on Monday, 9/30, for Writing Workshop.

STEP 4: Participate in Writing Workshop in class on Monday, 9/30. You will receive credit in the “Develop” module for coming prepared and engaging fully in the work of Peer Review.

STEP 5: Revise your first draft using feedback you receive from Writing Workshop and submit your final draft to Canvas by Friday, 10/7, at 11:59 pm.


  • Include a title
  • Use a legible, 12-point font and standard margins
  • You do NOT need to include a cover sheet
  • Use APA citation method (Links to an external site.) both in the text and in the works cited entry at the end
  • Include a Works Cited page at the end of the essay

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