How To Write The Philosophy Paper Your Professors Want

Writing is no easy task. Even for those naturally inclined towards writing, there are so many diverse styles that different fields of work demand that it is difficult to be able to switch between writing styles. I am a well-established English major, writing is my passion, and I found it highly difficult to write philosophy papers in upper division classes before I understood their construction. There is, indeed, a set way to write philosophy papers in college, and once you master it, the philosophical world finds it a universal part of its literature.

Philosophy is seldom readable. Plainly stated, it's a bunch of gibberish to the common man. Be it Spinoza or Aristotle, philosophy is confusing, hence one of the reasons why professors make clarity a requirement in the papers they assign. Everything you learned in English classes, forget. In philosophy papers, there's no formal introduction, no formal conclusion. If it makes you feel better, write those parts along with your paper, and then just cross them out. They are sadly unwanted. Those high school teachers who lauded you, gave you an A for utilizing "higher-level diction" and a "mature command of the language", forget their advice when it comes to philosophy papers. Flowery doesn't fly in philosophy. Nor does witty. Or cute. Or overly profound venturing into the very depths of your soul. It simply doesn't work. Descartes and Plato may be able to do it, but you can't, at least anyways according to the academic world.

So I repeat: strive for clarity. Keep your words short, your sentences concise and coherent. Be blunt. Logic is the base of philosophy, and it is critical that you abide by its rules. That is, methodically organize your argument. Begin with the topic given, and take a clear stand on it. Briefly give any background necessary to ensure that the reader will understand the point from which your resume, and delve into what you have to say. Philosophy papers, as oftentimes unreadable as they are, are cut and dry. Think like a Hellenist, those who tore everything down to arrive at the bare minimum truth. Strip out every fancy word, every inverted sentence, every unnecessary word (no kidding!) and start there. Once your argument is put to paper in a clear visible way, only then can you begin to add a very small dose of style back into your thesis.

Points for your argument in philosophy papers must proceed like the philosophical proofs which they imitate. Philosopher A believed in principle X. He defined principle X as A + B. Philosopher A came to this conclusion by 3 methods of reasoning: C, D, and E. Reasoning C can be explained in terms of example 1 and practical application 2. Reasoning D can be explained in terms of example 3 and 4...and so on, and so on. There is the skeleton for a philosophy paper, in essence.

Yet for those who thrive on simplicity, it's not as simple as it seems. Every single phrase, word, sentence, claim, that you say or make must not only be concisely and immovably supported, but it also must anticipate the reader's next thought. As you write your philosophy paper, reason your way through it. If you end up asking yourself "Why does he say this?" or "How does this apply to what I'm saying?" you're on the right track. Think critically (pardon the cliché). Further, another principle to keep in mind is your audience. Write your paper as if you were writing to someone who knew a general basis about your argument, who had read whatever you are referring to, and who is educated. No need to give a biographical background of Socrates. Even less need to summarize what the Apology says. And whatever you do, stay away from overly general statements-professors hate it.

Most importantly, cite your sources. Cite, cite, cite, cite out your ears. Philosophy as a science is based on premises...if there are no sound premises, there can be no valid argument. Only use textual quotes that are relevant. It is highly important that you sort through your data and once what you need is found, that you cite exactly where it came from.See more info about Michael Vick of programming do your computer science homework original article visit this site.

Philosophy papers are difficult in and of themselves. What makes them simply impossible, however, is not knowing how to write them. A proper understanding of how to write specifically for philosophy is essential, and trust me, it makes life a great deal easier.