Nuances of Writing a Historical Essay
Statement of a question
The main thing in writing an essay is to show not only that you are able to display a full awareness of the subject of the attitude. The main idea is to state the information correctly and consistently. It is important to argue and rely on facts. To do this, it is worthwhile to understand the essence of the question posed because your argument must correspond to it. Each essay must be built on specific blocks. That is, in the text, there should be an analysis of the problem, its discussion with arguments, comparison with another similar subject or phenomenon. This comparison should include key points on which it will be convenient to draw a parallel. To these blocks, you can add any others at your request. These moments should be given maximum attention because they lay the structure of your essay. They determine the vector of your narrative. Below we will decipher some key blocks and give explanations.
In order to explain this or that action or event, you need to generate the reasons and reveal the essence of the subject. For example, if the question is “Explain the reasons for the outbreak of World War I,” you must consistently state the basic facts that caused one of the most widespread armed conflicts in human history. Naturally, you should argue these reasons and explain why you took them into account.
Citation and deliberation
This or that quote can also set the tone of the essay. Usually, it is an expression of a historical personality or a historian. And you will have to discuss it in your text. For example: “The general background of the [First] World War is, after all, Anglo-German antagonism.” – Theobald Bettmann-Hollweg. Provide a discussion.
To begin with, you need to determine the vector of your narrative. This means you either agree with this quote or refute it. This will help you to express your thoughts more clearly and structurally and you will not lose the thread of your story.
This gives you a solid and clear argument to which you follow throughout the narrative and provide facts in its favor. You can also use the method of refuting the opposite argument, again, with bringing the facts.
By analyzing some quote, for example, stated above, you will show not only historical knowledge of the First World War but also the ability to choose arguments and select the facts that confirm them.
Perhaps, before you set the task to evaluate this or that action. If we say for example: “Japan’s participation in the war on the side of the Entente proved to be extremely beneficial for the Russian Empire”. You should evaluate this statement. You, again, choose the side. If you believe that this statement is true and Japan has significantly supported the Russian Empire with resources and secured its Asian part, you must give arguments. If you think that Japan’s support was absolutely superfluous and became a burden for the Russian Empire – prepare the facts. A third scenario is also possible. You can argue that this union was neither positive nor negative. Take some middle position and, again, operate with facts.
The essence is very simple, you need to take some theory and bring them to a comparison. For example, compare one economical school with another. Identify their similarities and differences. But, it is very important to bring not just a comparison but to oppose the ideology of these schools to each other.
One of the most important moments of your essay is its structure. It is on this depends on the readability of your narrative. The essay should contain an introduction, a presentation of the material and a conclusion. In the introduction, you acquaint the reader with the subject of the narrative, the main part is needed for your arguments, and in the conclusions, you summarize all of the above and duplicate the thesis.
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