Patterns for College Writing : A Rhetorical Reader and Guide

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Edition: 12th
Format: Paperback
Pub. Date: 2011-12-22
Publisher(s): Bedford/St. Martin's
List Price: $73.58

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Customer Reviews

Helpful even if it is boring  May 27, 2014
Rating StarRating StarRating StarRating StarRating Star

"Right now, I have got only one word to describe this book- Electrifying. Me and a lot of my friends found this book really helpful. I was quite low on English during my early college days. But after I bought this book, I became one of the toppers. Simple, lucid, clear and easy to understand. Its extremely helpful in explaining basic college themes, and covers all aspects of writing and grammar. I doubt if there are any books in the market that can stand up to this. This is my personal opinion, there MAY be books better than this one. But this one is certainly one of the best ever books on college writing I had ever seen in my life."

Patterns for College Writing : A Rhetorical Reader and Guide: 5 out of 5 stars based on 1 user reviews.


Laurie Kirszner and Stephen Mandell, authors with nearly thirty years of experience teaching college writing, know what works in the classroom and have a knack for picking just the right readings. In Patterns for College Writing, they provide students with exemplary rhetorical models and instructors with class-tested selections that balance classic and contemporary essays. Along with more examples of student writing than any other reader, Patternshas the most comprehensive coverage of active reading, research, and the writing process, with a five-chapter mini-rhetoric; the clearest explanations of the patterns of development; and the most thorough apparatus of any rhetorical reader, all reasons why Patterns for College Writingis the best-selling reader in the country. And the new edition includes exciting new readings and expanded coverage of critical reading, working with sources, and research. It is now available as an interactive Bedford e-book and in a variety of other e-book formats that can be downloaded to a computer, tablet, or e-reader.

Author Biography

During their longstanding collaboration, Laurie Kirszner and Stephen
Mandell have produced a number of best-selling college texts for
Bedford/St. Martin’s, including Foundations First: Sentences and Paragraphs,
Writing First: Practice in Context, and Focus on Writing. Laurie Kirszner
teaches composition, literature, and creative writing at the University of
the Sciences. Stephen Mandell is the founder and former director of the basic
writing program at Drexel University, where he teaches composition, literature,
and technical and business writing.

Table of Contents

Thematic Guide to the Contents
Introduction: How to Use This Book    
     Henry Louis Gates Jr., “What’s in a Name?”
     Responding to an Essay
1 Reading to Write: Becoming a Critical Reader
     Understanding Critical Reading
     Determining Your Purpose
* Brent Staples, Cutting and Pasting: A Senior Thesis by (Insert Name)
* Maria Hinojosa, A Supreme Sotomayor: How My Country Has Caught up to Me
* Brent Staples, Cutting and Pasting: A Senior Thesis by (Insert Name) (with sample annotations)
     Reading Visual Texts
2 Invention
Understanding Your Assignment
Setting Limits
Moving from Subject to Topic
Finding Something to Say
Journal Writing
Grouping Ideas
Understanding Thesis and Support
Developing a Thesis
3 Arrangement
Recognizing a Pattern
Understanding the Parts of the Essay
4 Drafting and Revising
Writing Your First Draft
Revising Your Essay
Points for Special Attention: First Draft
Points for Special Attention: Second Draft
Laura Bobnak, The Price of Silence (Student Essay)
5 Editing and Proofreading
Editing for Grammar
Editing for Punctuation
Editing for Sentence Style and Word Choice
Proofreading your Essay
Checking Manuscript Format
6 Narration
What is Narration?
Using Narration
Planning a Narrative Essay
     Developing a Thesis Statement
     Including Enough Detail
     Varying Sentence Structure
     Maintaining Clear Narrative Order
Structuring a Narrative Essay
Revising a Narrative Essay
Editing a Narrative Essay
GRAMMAR IN CONTEXT: Avoiding Run-on Sentences
A Student Writer: Narration
Tiffany Forte, My Field of Dreams (Student Essay)
     Points for Special Attention
     Focus on Revision
Visual Text: Marjane Satrapi, The Socks (Graphic Fiction)
Sandra Cisneros, Only Daughter
*Mark Edmundson, The Pink Floyd Night School
Bonnie Smith-Yackel, My Mother Never Worked
Martin Gansberg, Thirty-Eight Who Saw Murder Didn’t Call the Police
George Orwell, Shooting an Elephant
Sherman Alexie, Indian Education (Fiction)
Writing Assignments for Narration
Collaborative Activity for Narration
N.B. Chapters 7-14 follow the same structure as Chapter 6; subheadings have been omitted for brevity.
7 Description
Mallory Cogan, My Grandfather’s Globe (Student Essay)
Mary Lim, The Valley of Windmills (Student Essay)
Visual Text: Mary Hoover Aiken, Café Fortune Teller (Painting)
* Jhumpa Lahiri, Rice
* Ann Hodgman, No Wonder They Call Me a Bitch
Suzanne Berne, Ground Zero
Heather Rogers, The Hidden Life of Garbage
E. B. White, Once More to the Lake
Kate Chopin, The Storm (Fiction)
8 Exemplification
Kristy Bredin, Job Application Letter (Student Essay)
Grace Ku, Midnight (Student Essay)
Visual Texts: Four Tattoos: Alex Williams, “Lisa, Karen”; Joel Gordon, “Rose”; Bob Daemmrich , “Jiminy Cricket”; and Charles Gatewood, “Body Art” (Photos)
David J. Birnbaum, The Catbird Seat
Judith Ortiz Cofer, The Myth of the Latin Woman: I Just Met a Girl Named Maria
Brent Staples, Just Walk on By: A Black Man Ponders His Power to Alter Public Space
* Deborah L. Rhode, Why Looks Are the Last Bastion of Discrimination
* Zev Chafets, Let Steroids into the Hall of Fame
* Jamaica Kincaid, Girl
9 Process
Eric McGlade, The Search (Student Essay)
Melany Hunt, Medium Ash Brown (Student Essay)
* Visual Text: Matt McKeon, The Evolution of Privacy on Facebook (Graphs)
Malcolm X, My First Conk
Stanley Fish, Getting Coffee Is Hard to Do
* Joshua Piven, David Borgenicht, Jennifer Worick, How to Decorate Your Room When You're Broke
Arthur Miller, Get It Right: Privatize Executions
Jessica Mitford, The Embalming of Mr. Jones
Shirley Jackson, The Lottery (Fiction)
10 Cause and Effect
Evelyn Pelicane, The Irish Famine, 1845–1849 (Student Essay)
Visual Text: Louis Requena, Major League Baseball Brawl (Photo)
Norman Cousins, Who Killed Benny Paret?
* Stan Cox, The Case against Air Conditioning
Lawrence Otis Graham, The “Black Table” Is Still There
Linda M. Hasselstrom, A Peaceful Woman Explains Why She Carries a Gun
* Guillermo del Toro and Chuck Hogan, Why Vampires Never Die
Janice Mirikitani, Suicide Note (Poetry)
11 Comparison and Contrast
Mark Cotharn, Brains versus Brawn (Student Essay)
Maria Tecson, A Comparison of Two Web Sites (Student Essay)
Visual Texts: Auguste Rodin, The Kiss, and Robert Indiana, LOVE (Sculptures)
Bruce Catton, Grant and Lee: A Study in Contrasts
* Paul H. Rubin, Environmentalism as Religion
Bharati Mukherjee, Two Ways to Belong in America
* Amy Chua, Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior
Ellen Laird, I’m Your Teacher, Not Your Internet-Service Provider
Deborah Tannen, Sex, Lies, and Conversation
Gwendolyn Brooks, Sadie and Maud (Poetry)
12 Classification and Division
Josie Martinez, What I Learned (and Didn’t Learn) in College (Student Essay)
Visual Text: Ellis Island Immigration Museum/NPS, Key to Chalk Marks Designating Medical Conditions of Immigrants, Ellis Island (Chart)
William Zinsser, College Pressures
Carolyn Foster Segal, The Dog Ate My Disk, and Other Tales of Woe
Amy Tan, Mother Tongue
Stephanie Ericsson, The Ways We Lie
* Billy Collins, Aristotle
13 Definition
Ajoy Mahtab, The Untouchable (Student Essay)
Visual Text: U.S. Census Bureau, U.S. Census 2010 Form (Questionnaire)
Judy Brady, I Want a Wife
José Antonio Burciaga, Tortillas
Meghan Daum, Fame-iness
Gayle Rosenwald Smith, The Wife-Beater
* Amanda Brown, Love and Other Catastrophes
14 Argumentation
Matt Daniels, An Argument Against the Anna Todd Jennings Scholarship (Student Essay)
Visual Text: American Civil Liberties Union, Thanks to Modern Science . . . (Ad)
Thomas Jefferson, The Declaration of Independence
Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Declaration of Sentiments and Resolutions
Martin Luther King Jr., Letter from Birmingham Jail
* DEBATE: Are Internships Fair to Students?
* Anya Kamenetz, Take This Internship and Shove It
* Jennifer Halperin, No Pay? Many Interns Say, “No Problem”
* DEBATE: Should American Citizenship Be a Birthright?
* Linda Chavez, The Case for Birthright Citizenship
* George F. Will, An Argument to Be Made about Immigrant Babies and Citizenship
* CASEBOOK: What Can Be Done about the Shortage of Organ Donors?
* Alex Tabarrok, The Meat Market
* Scott Carney, The Case for Mandatory Organ Donation
* Charles Krauthammer, Yes, Let’s Pay for Organs
* Virginia Postrel, The Surgery Was Simple; the Process Is Another Story
* CASEBOOK: Should the Government Fight Obesity by Taxing Sugary Drinks?
* Richard F. Daines, A Tax That Invests in Our Health
* David Leonhardt, Fat Tax
* Daniel Engber, Let Them Drink Water!
15 Combining the Patterns
Michael Huu Truong, The Park (Student Essay)
Lars Eighner, On Dumpster Diving
* Barbara Ehrenreich, The Shame Game
David Kirby, Inked Well
Jonathan Swift, A Modest Proposal
16 Finding and Evaluating Sources
     Finding Information in the Library
     Finding Information on the Internet
     Evaluating Sources
17 Integrating Sources and Avoiding Plagiarism
     Integrating Source Material Into Your Writing
     Synthesizing Sources
     Avoiding Plagiarism
     Avoiding Common Errors that Lead to Plagiarism
     Avoiding Plagiarism with Online Sources
18 Documenting Sources: MLA
     Parenthetical References in the Text
     The Works-Cited List
Philip Lau, The Limitations of Wikipedia (Student Essay in MLA Style)
*Appendix: Documenting Sources: APA
     Using Parenthetical References
     Preparing a Reference List
     Examples of APA Citations
*Sample Student Essay in APA Style: Philip Lau, The Limitations of Wikipedia



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