Here's an example. Step 2: Contextualize your topic Next, give your reader the background information they need to understand your topic and argument.
Once they are thinking about the topic, and wondering why you hold your position, they are more likely to be engaged in the rest of the essay. What question or problem will you be thinking about? You might introduce the main subject of the essay and why it is an important topic.
In our example, the first sentence simply introduces the topic in a concise, compelling way: The invention of Braille marked a major turning point in the history of disability. Whist some progress has been made since these two inquiries were carried out, many improvements still need to be made to overcome institutional racism.
What message, then, does the building convey, and why are the fallen soldiers of such importance to the alumni who built it? For instance, in an essay about the First Amendment guarantee of freedom of speech, the context may be a particular legal theory about the speech right; it may be historical information concerning the writing of the amendment; it may be a contemporary dispute over flag burning; or it may be a question raised by the text itself.
The commemoration of those students and graduates who died for the Union during the Civil War is one aspect of this alumni message to the future, but it may not be the central idea. After working your way through the whole draft, testing your thinking against the evidence, perhaps changing direction or modifying the idea you started with, go back to your beginning and make sure it still provides a clear focus for the essay.
Your introduction should provide the reader with a sense of what they should expect out of your essay, not to expound upon every piece of knowledge ever developed by man. The fullness of your idea will not emerge until your conclusion, but your beginning must clearly indicate the direction your idea will take, must set your essay on that road.
Always keep all important and useful information at hand.
Is the essay limited to a particular time period, a particular group of people, a particular country?