audience and message 7 short response questions

Week 4 Short Responses – Question 1

Consider the examples of different audiences below. For each one, describe how you would adjust your writing for that particular audience. Be sure to respond to the question in four to six complete sentences, using proper grammar. Specifically address the following points:

  • How formal should your tone be?
  • What level of detail should you provide?
  • What is this audience looking for in your essay—basic information or detailed arguments?
  1. Your best friend
  2. People reading a newspaper editorial you’ve written
  3. Your professor
  4. The audience at a conference where you are presenting

Audience and Message (Question 2 and 3 below)

By now you should have a beginning idea of what your thesis statement and argument will be in your essay. Once you analyze and get to know the audience you are writing for (or choose to be writing for), you will have a clearer understanding of what message* to convey in your essay, which is closely related to your thesis. Knowing your audience allows you to select which details to include and which to leave out. Understanding their level of knowledge on the topic will help you decide how much information to include, how formal or informal your writing should be, and how subjective you should be in your writing.

When considering your audience, also remember why you are writing. The purpose of your writing is tied to the audience you are writing for. You should think about what you are trying to accomplish in your writing. For example, in your historical event analysis essay, you will be attempting to answer your research question by making an argument that ties back to your thesis statement.

Some things to consider about your audience when writing your paper:

  • Will the audience expect you to cite scholarly sources? (In this course, the answer is yes!)
  • Will the audience understand technical terms or jargon?
  • How much background information will the audience know about the topic?
  • Will the audience expect a particular format or point of view? (When writing for a class, it is usually best to check what formatting the instructor prefers.)

As the writer of your essay, you need to communicate your message in a way that is tailored to your specific audience. You could consider your vocabulary, your audience’s potential current knowledge of historical events, or lack thereof, and what is specifically important to the audience. Will your audience understand historical terminology and principles associated with your event, or will you need to explain these? All of these questions should be considerations when forming the message of your historical analysis essay. Crafting a succinct and clear message will make you a better writer in future courses, and in your day-to-day life as well.

Week 4 Short Responses – Question 2

Consider how your audience might influence the information you include in an historical analysis essay about the Women’s Suffrage Movement.

2. What audience would be most interested in reading about the women’s movement? How would you tailor your presentation to that audience? What message would be most appropriate for this audience?

Week 4 Short Responses – Question 3

3. Let’s say the intended audience for your historical analysis essay about the legal battle for women’s suffrage is a group of civil rights lawyers. How would you explain the legal background of the Constitution and the Nineteenth Amendment? How would this approach compare and contrast to an audience of high school students?

Question 4 and 5 – In each of the following exercises, you will be presented with a research question that addresses the idea of causality, as it relates to the women’s movement for equal rights.

For each exercise, craft a thesis statement based on that research question, using the information presented in this case study. Be sure to respond to the question in one to two complete sentences, using proper grammar

Week 4 Short Responses – Question 4

4. Was President Kennedy’s decision to support the Equal Rights Amendment a necessary cause for the amendment’s passage by Congress?.

Week 4 Short Responses – Question 5

5. Was the social tumult of the 1960s a necessary cause of the women’s liberation movement?

Week 4 Short Responses – Question 6

6. Simone de Beauvoir was the intellectual founder of the women’s liberation movement. Tailor this thesis statement into a message suitable for an audience of high school history students.

Week 4 Short Responses – Question 7

7. The women’s movement’s focus on issues related to sexual freedom, including reproductive rights, galvanized support among many younger women, but it cost the movement support among many older and more socially conservative women. Tailor this message for an audience consisting of students in a Women’s Studies class.

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