The paper prompt is not asking you to talk about nation-building in general, but nation-building in one specific place.“This has been especially true in the Middle East, where the country of Jordan offers one example of how states in the region approached nation-building.It also sets the writer up to address the questions in the prompt, getting at both the purposes of nation-building in Jordan and referencing the scholar of nationalism s/he will be drawing on from class: Anthony Smith.
- draw your readers in- culminate in a thesis statement that clearly states your argument- orient your readers to the key facts they need to know in order to understand your thesis- lay out a roadmap for the rest of your paper Often students get slowed down in paper-writing because they are not sure how to write the introduction.
Do not feel like you have to write your introduction first simply because it is the first section of your paper. Be specific in your analysis, and draw on at least one of the scholars of nationalism that we discussed in class.”Here is an example of a introduction for this prompt:“One of the most important tasks the leader of any country faces is how to build a united and strong nation.
The question already asks you to pick one example, so your job is not simply to reiterate that information, but to explain what kind of example Jordan presents.
You also need to tell your reader why the context you are providing matters.- “First, as foreigners to the region, the Hashemites had to establish their legitimacy as Jordan’s rightful leaders.
Second, given the arbitrary boundaries of the new nation, the Hashemites had to establish the legitimacy of Jordan itself, binding together the people now called ‘Jordanians.’ To help them address both challenges, the Hashemite rulers crafted a particular narrative of history, what Anthony Smith calls a ‘nationalist mythology.’”- This stage-setting is stronger because it introduces the reader to the problem at hand.
Instead of simply saying when and why Jordan was created, the author explains why the manner of Jordan’s creation posed particular challenges to nation-building.The writer rephrases the argument by saying, “Their myth remembers their descent from the Prophet, their leadership of the Arab Revolt, and the tribes’ shared Arab and Islamic heritage.” Then, the writer reflects briefly on the larger implications of the argument, showing how Jordan’s nationalist mythology depended on the suppression of other narratives. culminate in a thesis statement that clearly states my argument? orient my readers to the key facts they need to know in order to understand my thesis? When revising your introduction and conclusion, check them against the following guidelines: Does my introduction:1. To help them face the difficult challenges of founding a new state, they employed various strategies of nation-building.”Now, here is a version of that same introduction:“Since 1921, when the British first created the mandate of Transjordan and installed Abdullah I as its emir, the Hashemite rulers have faced a dual task in nation-building.First, as foreigners to the region, the Hashemites had to establish their legitimacy as Jordan’s rightful leaders.You need to be specific about what strategies of nation-building Jordan’s leaders used.You also need to assess those strategies, so that you can answer the part of the prompt that asks about the results of nation-building.- “By presenting themselves as descendants of the Prophet Muhammad, as leaders of the Arab Revolt, and as the fathers of Jordan’s different tribal groups, they established the authority of their regime and the authority of the new nation, creating one of the most stable states in the modern Middle East.”- This thesis statement is stronger because:1. Even though you will be persuading readers of your argument through the evidence you present in the body of your paper, you want to tell them at the outset exactly what you are arguing.2.Various tribes have also reasserted their role in the region’s past, refusing to play the part of “sons” to Hashemite “fathers.” For the Hashemites, maintaining their mythology depends on the same dialectical process that John R. Gillis identified in his investigation of commemorations: a process of both remembering and forgetting. Founded after World War I by the British, Jordan has since been ruled by members of the Hashemite family.”- This stage-setting section is also too general.Certainly, such background information is critical for the reader to know, but notice that it simply restates much of the information already in the prompt.