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Argumentative Phrases for a Formal Essay


Topic priming: for a long time X, it has been the case that Y it is/has been (often) asserted / believed / noted that X most accounts of X state / claim / maintain that Y , X is Y according to one of the most controversial/important Xs (in the recent literature) is Y Topic nomination (naming / identifying): a. statement of purpose: this paper intends / is designed to X the Basic emphasis / purpose / goal of the paper / article is to X *I/we / this paper intends to show / demonstrate / illustrate that X the purpose of this study / analysis / discussion is to X b. statement of topic: this paper treats / discusses / claims that X it is the case that X *my/our / this papers argument is essentially that X *I/we / this paper claims / maintains / contends that X Statement of organization: this paper will compare / contrast / describe / demonstrate that X (first) (by analyzing / comparing / demonstrating) (that Y) (then by ____ing Z, and finally by ____ing A) in what follows, X will be examined in erms of Y (and Z)


assert: it can be claimed / said / assumed that X it seems certain / likely / doubtful that X *I/we / this paper maintains / claims that X agree: as X perceptively states *I/we rather / somewhat / strongly agree with / support (the idea that) X X provides / lends support to Ys argument / claim / conclusion that Z / about Z

disagree: as X would have us believe, *I/we rather / somewhat / strongly disagree with X as X states 9somewhat) unclearly / erroneously X does not support Ys argument / claim / conclusion that Z although X contends that Y rather, this paper argues that X X in no way substantiates / supports Y X repudiates / disproves / disconfirms / calls Y into question compare: both X and Y are (quite) similar in that Z X resembles Y X and Y have / share some aspects of Z X and Y have in common that Z X is not unlike Y in that / with respect to Z contrast: X is (quite) different from Y (in that Z) X is not the case that / the same as Y X in no way resembles Y X contrasts with Y (in that Z) X is unlike Y in that / with respect to Z recommend: it is suggested / recommended that X this study recommends that X *I / we recommend / suggest that X substantiate: as proof / evidence / an example (for this) ... according to ______ as X says / claims / maintains / demonstrates X provides evidence / support that Y X substantiates Y classify: X can / may / might be divided / classified into Y (and Z) X and Y are categories / divisions of Z demonstrate: X demonstrates / shows that Y X is an illustration of Y

* First person, especially I, is strongly dispreferred in most formal academic writing. Based on an excerpt from Nattinger, J. & DeCarrico, J. 1992. Lexical Phrase and Language Teaching. Oxford: Oxford Univ. Press. pp. 165-6.