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Please review/Grade my Argument Essay


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Woven baskets characterized by a particular distinctive pattern have previously been found only in the immediate vicinity of the prehistoric village of Palea and therefore were believed to have been made only by the Palean people. Recently, however, archaeologists discovered such a "Palean" basket in Lithos, an ancient village across the Brim River from Palea. The Brim River is very deep and broad, and so the ancient Paleans could have crossed it only by boat, and no Palean boats have been found. Thus it follows that the so-called Palean baskets were not uniquely Palean.


Write a response in which you discuss what specific evidence is needed to evaluate the argument and explain how the evidence would weaken or strengthen the argument


My Response:

The author of the article points out some facts and discoveries about the ancient village of Palea and

Draws conclusion based on those findings. Although at the first skim of the writing it might seem logical, but on the contrary the author makes some significant leaps of arguments while trying to prove that Palean Baskets were not uniquely Palean. As a result his arguments warrant serious evidence to support his claims.


The author starts by pointing out a recent discovery of the distinctly Palean basket in Lithos, a village across a deep and broad river from Palea, and builds his following argument on this solitary fact. But he fails to acknowledge the possibility that other civilization from a comparatively later era, who might have access to a boat could have managed to bring the baskets across the river. The writer doesn't present any specific evidence pertaining to this scenario and thus fails to discard this possibility, which significantly weakens his argument. If he cited some study of the discovery of a group of antiquities  in Lithos, with the same carbon dating as the baskets then it would have strengthened his claims.


Moreover the author implies that as the river was deep and broad and as no Palean boats were ever found then they couldn't have crossed the river. This statement of the author lacks specific evidence on multiple fronts. Firstly the author indicates that archaeologists recently discovered the basket and further highlights the depth and the breadth of the river as the reason that impeded the Paleans from crossing it. But rivers are highly subjected to change and evolve over the course of prolonged period. It might be possible that during the ancient time when the Paleans were present the river was very shallow and narrow and over considerable amount of time the river has evolved to its current state. Without any evidence for or against this possibility, no accurate judgment can be made.


Secondly even though the writer mentions that there were no boat ever found he fails to provide any evidence that supports his claims. Was the lack of unearthing any boat belonging to the Paleans a definitive proof of the inability of the Paleans to make any boats? May be with further fastidious searches boats belonging to the Paleans might be found. If decisive proof of the technological inability of the Paleans to make boat could be found then it could be said with certainty that they never made boats. Otherwise there will always be a lingering possibility that with further conduction of exhausting searches in the Palean vicinity proof of boats could be found.


Archaeological studies and theories always depend on the information at hand and are subject to change when more conclusive evidence shows up. But in the article the author fails to provide significant pieces of crucial information to back-up his claims. Thus in absence of these verifications it cannot be said with certainty that the woven baskets were uniquely Palean.

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Wow, it's amazingly written and very cogently presented. Currently I am not that skillful enough to rate your essay but surely it'd be 5+ 

I want to ask you , did you time yourself while writing the essay? Can you give me some tips to write such a verbose essay , I've recently written the same essay but I wanted to elaborate it more but I fail to articulate my ideas , get nervous as the time ticks and end up writing a less cogent essay. Here's mine --


The arguement above states that the Woven Baskets which were native to Palea were also found in Lithos hence were not discreet to
Plaea. The above statement is too generalized and is fundamentally flawed , since it is based on numerous assumptions.

Firstly , it states that the Woven Baskets were found in vicinity of Palea hence they are produced by Paleans . Just because
they were found in the vicinity of Palea doesn't necessarily instigate that they were produced by them. For instance , the
world famous Apple originally belongs to California , but is produces parts in China this doesn't mean that the product belongs
to China. Therefore, more information regarding the same is needed.

Secondly, It states the Brim river is deep and broad but doesn't state how deep or broad it is , it might be 1 meter , 10 meter
or 1000 meter. The river could've been deep enough for a small child , but an adult could have easily crossed it by swimming or by
other means.'Deep' and 'Broad' are too general terms that do not give complete information about the river.

Moreover, it states no Palean boats have been found , but there's no evidence about Lithosean boats. Merchants , traders from
Lithos could have traveled to Palea and imported the Woven Basket which later on were discovered by archaeologists.

And, There's no specific evidence about the design and characteristics of the Woven Basket , since it belongs to prehistoric
time , there are huge chances that the particular distinctive pattern might've worn out with passage of time and the Baskets
discovered by the archaeologists in Lithos might be something closely related to but not the same as the baskets in Palea.

In sum , the given information is to generalized and is inappropriate to conclude , however more information regarding the
same would result in a better argument.


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Hello Kulkarni. Thanks for your input on my essay. I did time myself, and I took around 32 minutes (with some distractions). I just started practicing for GRE. But I've some writing experience from Highschool. To be honest my Issue Essays are not of the same standard as my argument essay. I suspect this has something to do with my Debating history. I'm more comfortable with arguments.

Anyway, as for tips, I can give you some.

I really liked this argument of your's

Moreover, it states no Palean boats have been found , but there's no evidence about Lithosean boats. Merchants , traders from
Lithos could have traveled to Palea and imported the Woven Basket which later on were discovered by archaeologists.

What I'd suggest is to elaborate on this. Your third (above one) and final argument is actually very good, but the first two hinges upon pedantic details. Brainstorming more would surely help. But overall it was a good essay.

You also made some grammatical errors, which happens. But one thing that stuck out was that, you used Instigate wrongly. Instigate means to start/initiate something (as far as I know). I think you wanted to mean Imply. I'd suggest not to use words that you're unsure of. 

As you say, you buckle under pressure; so I believe you'll be able to write very good essays if you keep practicing (while timing). You'll surely improve.


Edited by Mochachino_60
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