Essays on Writing (A Longman Topics Reader)

Lizbeth A. Bryant / Heather M. Clark  
Total pages
October 2008

Product detail

Product Price CHF Available  
Essays on Writing (A Longman Topics Reader)
39.30 approx. 7-9 days

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Essays on Writing explores social and cultural facets of writing as well as practices of writing in a brief, flexible, and inexpensive reader.


Designed for instructors who want to keep the discourse in the writing classroom on writing as well as students who want to connect the writing they do in their composition course to literacy outside of the academic environment, Essays on Writing  focuses on such issues as our attitudes toward writing, the impact of technology on writing, and the impact of writing outside academia in business and civic contexts.


Readings by canonical authors such as bell hooks, Donald Murray, Williams Zissner, and Anne Lamott are balanced by contemporary works on the topics of instant messaging, online paper mills, peer tutoring, and some of the consequences of spectacularly poor writing in legal and business settings.  Focused apparatus encourages students to think critically about their attitudes toward writing as they analyze pieces rhetorically and synthesis ideas in their own writing.


  • Chapter Introductions preview the issues and present the conversations reflected in the following chapter while framing how each reading contributes to the dialogue in order to help students recognize thematic and rhetorical connections among readings.
  • Prereading Questions that close each Chapter Introduction focus the readers' attention on the issues in the chapter and can be used as writing activities in which students explore their prior knowledge, generate questions they want answered, and predict what the readings will say. 
  • Head notes for each reading help students discern the author's angle of vision and purpose for writing by presenting the background of the writer and the rhetorical situation influencing the reading.         
  • Thinking and Writing Questions follow each reading and help students asses their comprehension, analyze rhetorical strategies, bring the reading into conversation with another, and analyze each piece so that students fully engage the reading, discuss with their peers, and develop ideas through their own writing. 
  • End-of-Chapter Writing Opportunities ask students to synthesize readings' ideas, prewrite, and produce formal writing that includes literacy narratives, analyses, and a researched writing. 

Table of Contents

Preface for the Student

Preface for the Instructor



1.  Attitudes



Roy Peter Clark, "I Won't Use Writing as Punishment.  I Won't. . . ."

Dick Harrington, "Writing about General Apache" 

John Holt, "Making Children Hate Reading"

Melissa Duffy, "Inspiration"

bell hooks, "writing autobiography"

Craig Vetter, "Bonehead Writing"

Stanley Aronowitz, "Writing Is Not a Skill"

End-of-Chapter Thinking and Writing


2. Practice


Sandra Boynton,"Five Paragraph Theme"

Gayle Brandeis, "Dyr Mom: Wy R You So Laveable?"

Susan Wyche, "Time, Tools, and Talismans"

William Stafford, "A Way of Writing"

Anne Lamott, "Shitty First Drafts"

Donald Murray, "Internal Revision"

William Zinsser, "Simplicity"

End-of-Chapter Thinking and Writing


3.  Voice


Lizbeth A. Bryant, "Disruptive 'Sexual' Voices in English 101"

Linda Christensen, "Teaching Standard English: Whose Standard?"

Nora McCarthy, "Flipping the Script: Exploring the Relationship between Form and Content in Teen Writing"

Rebecca Moore Howard, "A Plagiarism Pentimento"

Keith D. Miller, "Redefining Plagiarism: Martin Luther King's Use of an Oral Tradition" 

End-of-Chapter Thinking and Writing 


Technology and Integrity


Wendy Leibowitz, "Technology Transforms Writing and the Teaching of Writing"

Heather Hunter, "Traveling the Too-Much-Information Highway"

Seth Stevenson, "Adventures in Cheating"

Nicole Kristal, "Tutoring' Rich Kids Cost Me My Dreams"

Maureen Hourigan, "Of Plagiarism, Paper Mills and the Harried, Hurried Student" 

End-of-Chapter Thinking and Writing 


5.  Impact


Adam Liptak, "Judge Finds a Typo-Prone Lawyer Guilty of Bad Writing"

Sam Dillon, "What Corporate America Can't Build:  A Sentence"

C.W. Griffin, "Three Mile Island and the Billion Dollar Memo"

Karen Cangialosi, "Healing Through the Written Word"

Carol Avery, "Laura's Legacy" 

Margaret Atwood, "Spelling" 

Mary Pipher, 'Writing to Connect"

End-of-Chapter Thinking and Writing



Instructor Resources