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How important is the first paragraph?

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palrif | Student, Grade 11 | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted October 20, 2010 at 2:56 PM via web

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How important is the first paragraph?

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epollock | (Level 3) Valedictorian

Posted October 20, 2010 at 2:57 PM (Answer #1)

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The first paragraph establishes clarity about the narrator’s sense of guilt, but it shows him to be unsure about his own motivations for the narrative to follow. He is therefore ambiguous because he assumes that “some intellect” in the future may be able to interpret the causes of his actions, and therefore could show that they stemmed form “nothing more than an ordinary succession of very natural causes and effects.” It is a model for writers to follow in which it contains almost the entire exposition but leaves out enough information for readers to want to know more. This could be something that students could follow in developing their own essays.

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rupadhye | College Teacher | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted October 20, 2010 at 7:14 PM (Answer #2)

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The first paragraph sets the tone for the entire essay or story.One must use powerfully penetrating prose at the beginning.The first sentence and paragraph will make or break an essay.  It is important  for the first paragraph of an essay should have  a meaningful  first sentence.The first sentence needs to be more than a simple repetition of the topic of the essay.  It must invite and urge  the reader in for a closer look.  There are several ways to accomplish this end.  One could start with a famous quotation or a few relevant lines of poem essay.  A quotation properly used could do all the work for you to draw in the reader by its noteworthiness.  Sometimes a carefully formed question will draw in the reader who wants to know the answer.  However, one could write a creatively styled sentence that rolls off the tongue and intrigues the reader by a taste of great writing.  

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