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Mercedes R.
Novelist and Professional Editor and Educator
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Writing
TutorMe
Question:

Why is outlining important when creating a work of prose and how is it different from a summary?

Mercedes R.
Answer:

Spending the extra time to write an outline before beginning is greatly beneficial because it provides you with an opportunity to get your thoughts straight. Think of it like drawing a picture--an artist starts with a faint sketch in pencil before getting out the more permanent material. This outline isn't set in stone--it can (and most likely will) change as you begin working on the actual project. However, it tells you what you know and in general what you want to say, as well as the order that you want to say it in. An outline helps you make sure your ideas flow together and that it isn't just a jumble of words, ideas, or concepts thrown together with a name slapped onto it. An outline provides order--a skeleton that you can build up with flesh and muscles to create a whole entity. A summary comes after the fact. It is a short description of what you say in your essay, story, poetry collection, etc. Summaries are made up of complete sentences and proper grammar, and usually take the form of paragraphs. On the other hand, an outline is a compilation of ideas. It doesn't have to be written in complete sentences. In general, it only has to make sense if you read it. For example, if I were to be writing about the history of pies, I can write the following: 1. Intro A. Eyecatcher B. general facts C. Thesis 2. Apple A. seasonal B. american C. Independance 3. Lemon Meringue A. Tea B. .... While none of the entries are longer than two words, the words I included are key to the concept that each section will cover. A summary is longer: This paper delineates the history of pies while covering their cultural uses both today and in the past. It combines primary source research and surveys compiled over the last fifty years to paint a picture of how the popularity of certain pies have risen and fallen over the last fifty years. The research depicted in it shows that.... Outlines and summaries are both very different in form and function. One helps the writer (outline) and one helps the reader (summary). Both take practice to execute effortlessly, but if mastered can deliver beautifully written prose.

English
TutorMe
Question:

Why was 'A Doll House' by Henrik Ibsen seen as controversial when it was first performed and did Ibsen do this on purpose?

Mercedes R.
Answer:

Today, the western world considers women to be valuable members of society; they can vote, go to school, and sometimes even hold political offices. This mindset is quite a change from the world portrayed by Henrik Ibsen in 'A Doll House'. The story is set just over a hundred years ago, at the end of the 19th century. In Ibsen’s world, women are perpetual minors unable to own property, make financial transactions, or even hold jobs without their husbands’ approval. This patriarchal society feeds into the mentality that women are not fit to think for themselves. Thus, instead of realizing that Nora has a unique personality, Torvald tries to force his wife to behave according to his idea of a good woman. He is oblivious to her real feelings, which leads to a collapse of their marriage. In exaggerating the effect of the patriarchal mentality on women, Ibsen is attempting to shock his viewers by presenting them with an aspect of society not often noticed

Anthropology
TutorMe
Question:

Is it possible for anthropologists to exclude personal biases from their own ethnographic studies?

Mercedes R.
Answer:

The answer to this question is an obvious one: absolutely not. No matter how hard we try to exclude our personal views from what we write, we are products of our own culture, and so have a certain way of speaking about and viewing cultures outside of our own. The only way around this is to be as aware of our personal biases as we can, and to be mindful of the sorts of words we use to describe the groups in our ethnographies. An example of the power of words can be seen in "Body Rituals of the Nacirema" by Horace Minor. He uses mystical and foreign terms like tribe, shaman, rites, and ceremonies. In our society, these terms are associated with barbarity, ignorance, and a lack of modernity. They give one a sense of superiority when describing another culture using such terms, and creates a huge divide between the society in question and western readers. However, to be the bearer of spoilers, the tribe in Minor's paper is an American one, but because of his terminology, he has rendered it unrecognizable. It is a conscious choice to include such terminology when discussing an external society, and again a conscious choice to present a divide of biases rather than to attempt to teach a relatable and understandable comparison. We must be as aware of our own cultures as we are of the cultures that we are studying. Miner, Horace. "Body Ritual among the Nacirema." American Anthropologist 58, no. 3 (1956): 503-07. doi:10.1525/aa.1956.58.3.02a00080.

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