Discourse Community Essay Questions

Challenging students to write about our disciplines for diverse purposes and audiences deepens learning and promotes critical thinking.And so we put a great deal of effort into creating writing assignments that do not merely ask students to report back to us the content we have “delivered,” but instead require them to explore course content and address a target audience that has specific needs.In this essay, you'll be using the skills developed writing the Discourse Analysis to compare and contrast essays written within two different discourse communities on the same subject.When comparing/contrasting (a common request in college writing) you want to be sure to point out both similarities and differences.You may find it helpful to write an with members of your group.Do they agree with your explanation of what the two essays have in common? Can they identify your focus and follow your organizational strategy?

Use as much detail as you can; remember to incorporate examples from the text.

In this case, the details will be examples from the essays themselves.

You'll also want to focus your essay on a particular claim about how the two essays are alike and/or different.

Swales defines a discourse community as, "At its most basic, discourse is language in action, or language being used to accomplish something. Because groups of people united by some activity tend to develop a characteristic discourse, we can talk about communities that are identified by their discourse-thus, discourse community (Wardle, Downs pg.795)." In addition to Swales direct definition of a discourse community, he also provides six characteristics that identify a group of individuals as a discourse community. Swales goes on to state another characteristic for discours...

To earn a position of a discourse community one must possess accurate knowledge, establish reliability of members to be accepted and learn to persuade other members of the community. Machiavelli's Discourses Throughout his discourses, Machiavelli gives a political and philosophical interpretation of the first ten books of Livy's History. "Religion can be used, that is, to inspire- and if necessary to terrorize- the ordinary populace in such a way as to induce them to prefer the good of their community to all other goods" (Skinner, 62). Machiavelli's focus on liberty and greatness of empire can be seen throughout his discourses on Rome's history.

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