Thesis Statements: Four Steps to a Great Essay

Writing a thesis statement is all about figuring out the main idea for your paper and then explaining that main idea to your reader. But where to begin with the question the question you’re answering with your essay will use the Scarlet Letter as an example.

Let’s say your teacher gave you the following question as your essay topic what role does the Scarlet Letter a play in Hawthorne’s novel and why is it important.

Step 1 Assuming you’ve read the book and really you can’t write a paper without having read the book. Answer the question off the top of your head question. What role does the Scarlet Letter a play in Hawthorne’s novel and why is it important. Preliminary thesis in the scarlet letter the letter A is a symbol that’s a good start but you haven’t answered the whole question remember that the second part of the question is and why is an important.

Step two So now you need to refine your answer. At this point you’ll probably need to look back at your notes about the book to figure out why¬† its important. After you do revise your thesis statement question what role does the Scarlet Letter a play in Hawthorne’s novel and why is it important revise thesis in the scarlet letter. The letter A is more than a symbol it actually helps define Hester’s identity. That’s not a bad thesis but remember that your thesis sends the reader off into your essay not just knowing what you’re going to write about. But how you’re going to make your case in other words you want to give your reader a little bit more direction

Step three Before you finish refining your thesis you need to know which examples from the book are going to help you make your case for this question. We might look at the way the meaning of the Scarlet Letter a changes over the course of the novel. First it defines Hester as an adulteress later it shows how able Hester is. And finally it comes to stand for angel as Hester takes control of her own identity.

So with these examples in mind let’s revise that thesis one more time question. What role does the Scarlet Letter a play in Hawthorne’s novel and why is it important. Finalized thesis version 1 in The Scarlet Letter the letter A is more than a symbol it actually helps define Hester’s identity.

Steps 4 ask yourself if I really saying all I could be saying with my thesis. I really saying it in the clearest possible way or are my examples leading me to tweak my thesis and say something a little different a little deeper.

If your answer to any of these questions is yes revise again question what role does the Scarlet Letter a play in Hawthorne’s novel and why is it important finalized thesis version 2 in The Scarlet Letter. The letter A isn’t just a symbol of Hester’s downfall as Hester moves from adulteress to a woman who’s able and finally to an angel. It becomes a symbol of Hester’s agency in defining her own identity.

Let’s look at those steps one last time to write your own killer thesis statement one answer the question to refine your answer making sure you’ve answered all parts of the question.