Presentation on theme: "How To Write the Compare and Contrast Essay"— Presentation transcript:
1 How To Write the Compare and Contrast Essay
AP WORLD HISTORY
2 AP World History Test Format
Multiple Choice – 70 questions in 55 minutesWriting: 2 hours, 10 minutesDocument Based Question (DBQ) – 10 minutes reading, 40 minutes writingChange and Continuity Over Time – 40 minutesCompare and Contrast – 40 minutes
3 Step One: Read the Question
Generally, you will be asked to analyze a broad historical issue or issues for two areas of the worldIdentify the TASKS and TERMS of the questionTASKS: What is the question asking you to DO?TERMS: What SUBJECT(S) do you need to TALK ABOUT in your essay?
4 Step 1.5: Make Your Selection when Possible
Sometimes the question will give you a choice of topic(s) and/or region(s)Make your selectionYou may be given choicesPick the areas you know the most facts aboutIf the questions picks the region(s), but allows you to choose the topics, you should always choose THREE topics/categories of analysis (Think SPICE)Be sure to read the question carefully, as it may provide you with all of the tasks and terms that you need to answer the question without making any choices.
5 With Choice (Categories AND Region):
Sample QuestionsWith Choice (Categories AND Region):With Choice (Region)Within the period from to 1900, compare the processes (e.g. political, social, economic) of empire building in the Spanish Empire with the empire- building processes in ONE of the following:The Ottoman EmpireThe Russian EmpireCompare demographic and environmental effects of the Columbian Exchange on the Americas with the Columbia Exchange’s demographic and environmental effects on ONE of the following regions between 1492 andAfricaAsiaEurope
6 Sample Question (No Choice)
For the period from 1500 to 1830, compare North American racial ideologies and their effects on society with Latin American/Caribbean racial ideologies and their effects on society.
7 Practice Identifying TASKS and TERMS
Analyze political, economic, and cultural similarities and differences between Egypt and Mesopotamia during the River Valley period.
8 Step #2: Brainstorm Essential Ideas
Before writing your essay, try to list as much as you can about the terms/topics addressed in the questionCreate categories of analysis from your list of facts (IF they give you a choice)Your knowledge should dictate your choice of region(s) and/or topic(s)You need to be able to identify at least THREE specific facts or pieces of evidence per category of analysisBrainstorming should take no more than five minutes
9 Step 3: Develop Thesis and Introduction Paragraph
Your thesis must respond to the question directly by telling the reader why/how you will complete the task by using the terms of the questionCan be more than one sentenceMake sure to address ALL parts of the questions
10 Step 3: Elements of Thesis
All Thesis Statements must include at least:Time PeriodRegion(s)Categories of Analysis/TopicsExplanation of a similarity or a difference for EACH of the categories of analysis using specific details
11 Sample Thesis OutlineWhen analyzing (thematic category), (thematic category) and (thematic category) in (region) and (region) during/between (time period), there are many similarities and differences. With regards to (thematic category #1), a (S/D) is (identify S/D), due to (brief explanation). Regarding (thematic category #2), a (S/D) is (identify S/D), due to (brief explanation). Finally, when examining (thematic category #3), (S/D) is (similar/different) because (brief explanation).
12 Step 3: What Not to Do in a Thesis
DO NOT SIMPLY RESTATE THE QUESTIONAvoid Flowery Language or vague generalities – get right to the point in your thesisAvoid giving historical background unless absolutely necessary
13 Practice: Identifying Strong, Blah, and Weak Thesis Statements
14 Analyze political, economic, and cultural similarities and differences between Egypt and Mesopotamia during the River Valley period.Early River Valley civilizations have both similarities and differences.Early River Valley civilizations have both similarities and differences. Both have rivers, however they differ in many aspects.Egypt and Mesopotamia have both similarities and differences. Both early river valley civilizations have similar environmental origins, however aspects such as religion, economics, and politics developed differently in each civilization.
15 Analyze political, economic, and cultural similarities and differences between Egypt and Mesopotamia during the River Valley period.During the period of river valley civilizations, Egypt and Mesopotamia shared many political, economic, and cultural similarities, while also remaining different in several ways throughout the same categories. Economically, both relied on trade for essential items. Politically, however, Egypt was centralized and Mesopotamia decentralized due to differing geographic features. Finally, their cultural traditions differed due to their differing environments.
16 Analyze political, economic, and cultural similarities and differences between Egypt and Mesopotamia during the River Valley period.Egypt and Mesopotamia developed both similarly and differently during the river valley period, particularly when examining their economic, political, and cultural traditions. In early history, Egypt and Mesopotamia shared similar polytheistic beliefs that were often connected to their surrounding geography, although differences in this geography led to varying interpretations on the nature of the gods and the afterlife. Economically, both civilizations traded with surrounding regions, not only for necessary goods, but also luxury goods, indicating both civilizations’ economic strength. Finally, while both employed monarchical governments, Mesopotamian government was decentralized, whereas Egyptian government was centralized. Just as geography determined religious beliefs, so too did it factor into the political decisions and organization of these early civilizations.
17 Step 4: Body ParagraphsAll parts of the question must be addressed in your body paragraphsYou need to address similarities AND differences within EACH category of analysisYou must ALWAYS explain WHY or HOW the regions are similar or differentRULE OF THREE:Each essay should have THREE categories of analysis, unless otherwise notedEach essay should have at least THREE body paragraphs, one for each category of analysisEach body paragraph should have at least THREE similarities/differences identifiedEach body paragraph needs to have at least THREE pieces of specific evidence to support the similarities/differences
18 Step 4: Body Paragraphs Each body paragraph MUST have a topic sentence
It should briefly restate (in different words) what you said in the thesisGood Example of a Topic Sentence:Egypt and Mesopotamia shared many political similarities, such as monarchies, but also many differences, such as centralized and decentralized governments.Bad Example of a Topic Sentence:Egypt and Mesopotamia had many political similarities and differences.
19 Step 4: Direct Comparisons in Body Paragraphs
You must have at least one direct comparison in each body paragraph.The best essays have multiple direct comparisons in each body paragraphDirect Comparison: referencing BOTH civilizations in one sentence, as related to a specific similarity or difference
20 Direct Comparison Examples
Poor Direct Comparison:Egypt and Mesopotamia shared several political similarities.Slightly Better Direct Comparison:Egypt and Mesopotamia were similar because both had kings.Best Direct Comparison:Egypt and Mesopotamia both had kings at the center of their government in order to provide central leadership and clear laws for both regions. However, while Egypt believed their Pharaohs were gods, people in Mesopotamia believed that gods only gave kings the right to rule.
21 Step 4: Analysis in Body Paragraphs
You must always explain WHY or HOW the regions are similar or different for every example that you provide.If you cannot do this, do not include the example in your body paragraphs.You can combine the identification and explanation into one sentence, or make it 2+ sentences.
22 Unacceptable Body Paragraph
Egypt and Mesopotamia were politically similar and different in many ways. Egypt and Mesopotamia both had kings. Egypt believed its king, known as a pharaoh, was a god. Egypt was centralized, but Mesopotamia was decentralized. Egypt was not invaded as often as Mesopotamia.
23 Better Body ParagraphEgypt and Mesopotamia shared many political similarities, such as monarchies, but also many differences, such as centralized and decentralized governments. Egypt and Mesopotamia both had kings at the center of their government in order to provide central leadership and clear laws for both regions. However, while Egypt believed their Pharaohs were gods, people in Mesopotamia believed that gods only gave kings the right to rule. This, in large part, was due to the more positive beliefs attributed to Egyptian gods, as compared to Mesopotamia’s more negative views on religion. Both governments employed bureaucracies to implement the laws the king, making it easier to maintain control. Finally, while they shared many political features, one major difference was that Egypt had a more centralized government, whereas Mesopotamia was more decentralized as city-states. Egypt’s centralization is because of its isolation and protection provided by the Sahara Desert and Nile River cataracts. However, Mesopotamia has no such geographical features, thus leaving them more vulnerable to outside attack and in greater need of smaller, more spread out governments that can respond at any time.
24 Step 5: ConclusionEvery essay MUST have a conclusion paragraph – you will lose points in my class if you do not have a conclusion paragraph that includes at least:Restatement of thesis in new wordsBrief explanation of an example from each category to demonstrate similarities and differences
25 General Tips All essays are worth 100 points
Always Remember the Rule of ThreeAll Essays written at home must be typed, double- spaced, with 1” margins, and 12-point fontLate essays lose 10% points per day. Essays later than 2 days will receive a 0; missing essays will result in an incomplete in Infinite Campus until you submit it
Essay on Compare and Contrast Egypt and Mesopotamia
901 WordsOct 22nd, 20124 Pages
Egypt developed around the Nile River, while Mesopotamia developed between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers. Egypt and Mesopotamia grew into complex civilizations. Politically, both Egypt and Mesopotamia had a government with one main ruler, but Egypt had a centralized government with a pharaoh, while Mesopotamia had a decentralized government with a king. Socially, both civilizations were patriarchal, but Egypt was more lenient towards women while Mesopotamia was stricter. The political and social structures of Egypt and Mesopotamia both similarities and differences. Politically, although both Egypt and Mesopotamia had one main ruler, Egypt was centralized and whereas Mesopotamia was decentralized. Egypt centralized government led…show more content…
However, in Mesopotamia, the males subjugated the women. To stop married women from tempting other men, they were forced to cover their bodies, except for their faces, with veils. Women in Mesopotamia were often arranged into marriages, without a say on the subject. The Mesopotamian women had little impact on their society, while certain Egyptian women were able to gain highly influential positions in their society. One Egyptian woman even became the Queen of Egypt, alongside her son. Due to Egypt being less strict towards the women, Egyptian women were able to have a greater influence on their society. Although both civilizations were patriarchal, they varied on how strict they were towards women. Ancient civilizations surrounding Egypt and Mesopotamia during this time period had similar political and social structures to either of the civilizations. Most societies with a centralized government did not see their rulers as divine as pharaohs. Some civilizations, like the Chinese rulers and their Mandate of Heaven, ruled with a power similar to the Egyptian pharaohs. However, the Chinese empire could also be overthrown if they were a bad ruler. The Greek city-states also constantly fought each to gain power over all of Greece. Socially, ancient civilizations were not as lenient towards their women. Since social inequalities developed starting around the development of agriculture, women of ancient times were