The conclusion is a very important part of your essay. Although it is sometimes treated as a roundup of all of the bits that didn’t fit into the paper earlier, it deserves better treatment than that! It's the last thing the reader will see, so it tends to stick in the reader's memory. It's also a great place to remind the reader exactly why your topic is important. A conclusion is more than just "the last paragraph"—it's a working part of the paper. This is the place to push your reader to think about the consequences of your topic for the wider world or for the reader's own life!
A good conclusion should do a few things:
- Restate your thesis
- Synthesize or summarize your major points
- Make the context of your argument clear
Restating Your Thesis
You've already spent time and energy crafting a solid thesis statement for your introduction, and if you've done your job right, your whole paper focuses on that thesis statement. That's why it's so important to address the thesis in your conclusion! Many writers choose to begin the conclusion by restating the thesis, but you can put your thesis into the conclusion anywhere—the first sentence of the paragraph, the last sentence, or in between. Here are a few tips for rephrasing your thesis:
- Remind the reader that you've proven this thesis over the course of your paper. For example, if you're arguing that your readers should get their pets from animal shelters rather than pet stores, you might say, "If you were considering that puppy in the pet-shop window, remember that your purchase will support 'puppy mills' instead of rescuing a needy dog, and consider selecting your new friend at your local animal shelter." This example gives the reader not only the thesis of the paper, but a reminder of the most powerful point in the argument!
- Revise the thesis statement so that it reflects the relationship you've developed with the reader during the paper. For example, if you've written a paper that targets parents of young children, you can find a way to phrase your thesis to capitalize on that—maybe by beginning your thesis statement with, "As a parent of a young child…"
- Don’t repeat your thesis word for word—make sure that your new statement is an independent, fresh sentence!
Summary or Synthesis
This section of the conclusion might come before the thesis statement or after it. Your conclusion should remind the reader of what your paper actually says! The best conclusion will include a synthesis, not just a summary—instead of a mere list of your major points, the best conclusion will draw those points together and relate them to one another so that your reader can apply the information given in the essay. Here are a couple of ways to do that:
- Give a list of the major arguments for your thesis (usually, these are the topic sentences of the parts of your essay).
- Explain how these parts are connected. For example, in the animal-shelter essay, you might point out that adopting a shelter dog helps more animals because your adoption fee supports the shelter, which makes your choice more socially responsible.
One of the most important functions of the conclusion is to provide context for your argument. Your reader may finish your essay without a problem and understand your argument without understanding why that argument is important. Your introduction might point out the reason your topic matters, but your conclusion should also tackle this questions. Here are some strategies for making your reader see why the topic is important:
- Tell the reader what you want him or her to do. Is your essay a call to action? If so, remind the reader of what he/she should do. If not, remember that asking the reader to think a certain way is an action in itself. (In the above examples, the essay asks the reader to adopt a shelter dog—a specific action.)
- Explain why this topic is timely or important. For example, the animal-shelter essay might end with a statistic about the number of pets in shelters waiting for adoption.
- Remind the readers of why the topic matters to them personally. For example, it doesn’t matter much if you believe in the mission of animal shelters, if you're not planning to get a dog; however, once you're looking for a dog, it is much more important. The conclusion of this essay might say, "Since you’re in the market for a dog, you have a major decision to make: where to get one." This will remind the reader that the argument is personally important!
A cultural identity essay may turn out to be either the easiest task you've ever got assigned to write or a real torture. It all depends on the topic you choose and the techniques you use in writing this kind of academic paper. Some students google for "my cultural identity essay example" trying to use someone else's experience. However, there are no 100%-suitable cultural identity essay examples for you on the Web because each person has a unique background. Don't you worry! Here is a guide to help you to come up with excellent cultural identity essay topics on your own.
What a Cultural Identity Essay Is
Before you start writing or even picking a topic, you have to get a clear understanding what a this type of essay is and how it differs from other essays. This type of writing reveals your personality regarding your cultural background. No matter what aspects of your culture you've decided to depict, you should always write about how they have influenced your life views, behavior, beliefs, etc. So, one can state that this essay has a lot in common with a reflective one. Many students ask: "Do I always have to write a cultural identity essay about myself?" The answer is yes unless anything else is specified. In some cases, you may be asked to write an essay about the cultural identity of some other person or a fictional character.
How to Pick the Subject
The subject under your consideration is your cultural identity. However, you should narrow it down to write a successful essay. You may touch upon the themes of nationality, customs and beliefs, the environment you were raised in, the environment your parents were raised in as long as it concerns you, the historical background of your country, etc. If you've moved to another country, you may describe the differences between the aspects listed above and what you see here. On the other hand, you can search for parallels between your culture and the culture of the country where you live.
Choosing Cultural Identity Essay Topics
After you have selected the main subject of your essay, it is time to invent a perfect topic. Mind that there are several rules you are to follow while making your choice.
Rule #1 Consider Who You Are Going to Write About
As mentioned above there can be three main types of "protagonists" in this type of essay: you, another person who is usually well-known, or a fictional character. This is the first criterion for choosing your topic: ABOUT WHOM you are going to write. If it is about yourself, try to describe the unique experience you've got. If you work with a piece of literature, for example, try to reveal the character's traits rooted in his or her cultural identity.
Rule #2 Connect Your Topic to the Subject You've Chosen
Then, consider the subject you have chosen. The topic should demonstrate the strong connection between the person you are writing about and your subject.
Rule #3 Sparkle the Interest
Many students are wondering "If I write this essay about myself, will anybody read it?" If you think that nobody will read your personal essay attentively because it is boring, you can't be more wrong. Your teacher will read it anyway because this is the job to be done. However, it doesn't mean that you can relax. What makes your topic interesting to your readers is whether you give them an opportunity to associate with your experience or not. No matter whether you and your readers belong to the same culture or to different ones, you can fascinate them with your descriptions, awaken the feelings everybody has when they think of their home, and make your narrative really catchy. All this should find reflection in the topic you choose.
Rule #4 Make It Laconic
We have already discussed that cultural identity essay topics should reflect the content to grab the reader's attention. It is even more difficult given that the topic should be as short as possible. In the majority of cases, a topic includes a single sentence. But if you think it is impossible to say it in one sentence, your topic might have two. It is vital to remember the structure of such topic and titles, although you are better to work on the final title version when the body of work is ready. Use semicolon for a two-sentence topic. The second part can be either declarative or interrogative.