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WRIT 111 (James): Narrowing Your Topic (PP)

Make These 3 Choices First

First Choice

Which modern-day paranormal activity or belief do you want to write about? 

Second Choice

Do you want to validate/legitimize or refute/delegitimize this paranormal activity or belief?

Third Choice

Which rhetorical direction do you want to go with? Religious? Psychological? Empirical?

Religious Rhetorical Direction

Things to Think About

  • Christian approach to the paranormal in general
    • Do all Christians view the paranormal the same way?
  • Christian beliefs about your specific paranormal phenomenon (ex: ghosts)
  • How does being Christian (or a non-Christian) inform how you think about your paranormal phenomenon?


Helpful Background Information on this Topic

What Does the Bible Say About Ghosts? -- Relevant Magazine

Verses about the Paranormal -- Open Bible

Supernatural: What the Bible Teaches About the Unseen World - And Why It Matters -- Book by Michael S. Heiser

Psychological Rhetorical Direction

Things to Think About

  • What causes people to interpret experiences as paranormal or not?
    • Their Education? (ex: do more or less college-educated people believe in the paranormal?)
    • Their Mental Health? (ex: does someone with schizophrenia interpret their experiences as being paranormal?)
    • Their Cognitive State? (ex: high on drugs)
    • Their Location? (ex: in a "haunted house" versus their house?)

Helpful Background Information on this Topic

Why People Think They See Ghosts -- Vox

The Psychology of Paranormal Belief: A Researcher's Handbook -- book by H.J. Irwin

Empirical Rhetorical Direction

Things to Think About

  • What specific case study would you like to validate or debunk?

If You Need More Help Narrowing Your Topic or Picking a Rhetorical Direction -- Visit the ARC

Be sure to plan ahead and schedule appointments as soon as possible. The ARC schedule fills quickly, especially during busy phases of semesters, such as mid-term and finals. The quickest and surest way to schedule an ARC consultation that fits into your academic plan is to schedule through the online system, TutorTrac.