Quick Write

What are questions or issues with diversity that would benefit from us researching them?

Chp 5, “And Yet”

Distinguishing What You Say from What They Say

Chapter 5 (p. 68) introduces you to the term voice markers in order to help you distinguish the “I say” from the “They say.” This is a very important move since we are now including the “They say” in your writing. If you do not do this clearly, the reader will be confused as to your position and you may seem to contradict yourself.

The templates help you with specific ways of signaling who is saying what, and to embed the voice markers. Being able to distinguish your own view from the common view is a “sophisticated rhetorical move.”

Using “I” or “We”

The chapter also covers using the first person in academic writing, “I” or “we.” You have likely been told to not or never use the I in college writing. The book argues that well-supported arguments are grounded in persuasive reasons and evidence, not in the use of nonuse of pronouns.

Grossman “From Scroll to Screen”

From Scroll to Screen by Lev Grossman was first published in the New York Times.

What is Grossman’s report about? What is his purpose?

Does this sound like an argument or a thesis?

How is he organizing the information?

Gladwell “Small Change”

Malcolm Gladwell “Small Change: Why the Revolution Will Not Be Tweeted” (399)

Gladwell discusses the arguments promoting social media as a key component in social activism starting in paragraph 7. He says, “The new tools of social media have reinvented social activism. With Facebook and Twitter and the like, the traditional relationship between political authority and popular will has been upended, making it easier for the powerless to collaborate, coordinate, and give a voice to their concerns.” He discusses revolutions in Moldova and Iran and quotes a former senior State Department official who believes social media can be used to fight terrorism. He brings up these opposing views (his “they say”) after an extended description of the Woolworth’s lunch counter sit-ins. He begins to refute these views in paragraph 8.

2/2/60 Greensboro, N.C.: A group of Negro students from North Carolina A&T College, who were refused service at a luncheon counter reserved for white customers, staged a sit-down strike at the F.W. Woolworth store in Greensboro 2/2. Ronald Martin, Robert Patterson and Mark Martin are shown as they stayed seated throughout the day. The white woman at left came to the counter for lunch but decided not to sit down.
woolworths sit in
Sit-in participants are bullied and have food and drinks dumped on them.

Chp 6 Skeptics May Object

Chapter 6 introduces a different sort of “they say”: the naysayer. The naysayer, or counterargument, appears after the conversation and after you have made some points. Including what the objections might be helps you make a more thorough point and adds credibility to the writing.

Be careful to treat the objection carefully and fairly. Do not present a weak argument or a simplification of it because that can lead to a number of fallacies including the Strawman fallacy.


The book offers suggestions for including the Naysayer or Skeptic.

  • Anticipate Objections
  • Entertain Objections in your own writing.
  • Name the Naysayers.
  • Introduce objections formally or informally
  • Represent Objections Fairly
  • Answer Objections
  • Make concessions and stand your ground.