Understanding Your Purpose

Definition

Writers often use definition for key terms of ideas in their essays. A formal definition, the basis of most dictionary definitions, has three parts: the term to be defined, the class to which the term belongs, and the features that distinguish this term from other terms in the class.

Term

Class

Distinguishing characteristics

Democracy is

government

by the people, exercised directly or through elected representatives

Look at your own topic. Would definition help you analyze and explain your subject?

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Introduction