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However, when eating from a partitioned plate, a diner might have a bite of burger, then a spoonful of baked beans, then back to the burger, and then the macaroni salad.
It would be better to cut one’s toenails, because at least the repetitive task of clipping toenails results in feet more comfortably suited to sneakers, allowing for greater movement in this world.
The five-paragraph essay, by contrast, cuts all mirth and merit and motion from ideas until there is nothing to stand upon at all, leaving reader and writer alike flat on their faces.
Not so for the consumers of the five-paragraph essay, who must move through Point 1, then Point 2, and then Point 3. It is arbitrary force-feeding to the point of indigestion.
After the body paragraphs, and if readers have not already expired, they may read the Conclusion, which is actually a summary of the Introduction.
I hate it so much, I decided to be naughty and condemn the five-paragraph essay in a five-paragraph essay. Despite this long tradition, the five-paragraph essay is fatally flawed.
It cheapens a student’s thesis, essay flow and structure, and voice.A five-paragraph essay is like a string of beads with no differentiation, such as a factory, rather than an individual, might produce.No matter how wondrous the material, the writer of a five-paragraph essay will sound reductive, dry, and unimaginative. Besides teaching college literature courses, I write creatively, and my debut young adult novel comes out in September.I am joining the debate on the five-paragraph essay in response to because I think high school and college teachers can work together and set up our students for success—and the five-paragraph essay is setting them up for a really tough time in college.First, the five-paragraph essay constricts an argument beyond usefulness or interest.In principle it reminds one of a three-partitioned dinner plate.Confidence is shattered, and students can’t articulate a position, having only the training of the five-paragraph essay dulling their critical reasoning skills.Moreover, unlike Midas whose touch turns everything to gold, everything the five-paragraph essay touches turns to lead.Such an essay form is the very three-partitioned tombstone of human reason and imagination.Kim Zarins is a medievalist and an Associate Professor of English at the California State University at Sacramento.