Democracy and Authoritarianism

Description FOCUS ON THIS QUESTION: What are the differences between cases in terms of the timing and process of industrialization, nationalism, and constitutionalism (rule of law) and to what extent these structural variables bare fruit in helping us to explain transitions and revolutions? INSTRUCTIONS TO FOLLOW • Maximum 250 words (please include word count) • Overview of the summary Make sure to include the following 1) Question 2) Thesis 3) Evidence Question refers to the overall topic of the article – what big question does the article seek to answer. This may not be obvious until after you have finished reading the whole article/chapter. But in most cases it should be clear from the first paragraph. Thesis is the main idea—the big argument for the article or book or chapter. In academic writing, the thesis is typically (although not always) located in the first paragraph. If the article has an abstract, you will find the thesis there. A thesis is never simply a statement of fact (The Canadian government signed the Kyoto Accord in 1997). Rather, it is an argument. It is therefore always possible to disagree with a thesis. A good clue that you have correctly identified the thesis is if the author seeks to persuade you of it throughout the rest of the article. Evidence is the information that the author provides that makes the thesis something more than an opinion or assertion—without the evidence you have to take the author’s word for it or just take what they are saying on faith. – Factual information/claims by the author – Arguments that other experts have made – Philosophical or logical information and arguments Summarizing the evidence does not mean listing all of the facts that appear in the article. Instead, try to write one or two sentences that demonstrate the significance of the facts, or that identifies the most important fact. When you read with this lens in mind it helps you to think more systematically about how the article is being developed and this will help you to develop your own writing.

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