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What are some tips on making a reaction paper?

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Quick Answer

Some tips for writing a reaction paper, also known as a response paper, include reading or observing the piece closely to get a well-rounded understanding of it and taking detailed notes of initial impressions. The reaction paper must have a strong thesis and present a relevant argument.

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The first paragraph of the reaction paper needs a strong introductory sentence that contains the title of the piece to which the writer is responding and the name of the author or artist. The end of the first paragraph contains a well-crafted thesis statement on which the rest of the paper is built. Reaction papers rely on the writer's opinion and contain phrases such as "I feel" or "I believe" to accurately relay the information.

Reaction papers are written about multiple forms of work including art, film, books, plays and poems. Examples from the work or references to the work are necessary when describing a particular position or response. Some acceptable response statements include "it is clear that the writer is trying to convey" or "the artist did not successfully make me think of" followed by an analysis of a particular aspect of the piece. The writer has to balance careful analysis with personal observations.

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