Analyzing Marcus’ “Dartmouth’s New College Try”

In Marcus’s article, “Dartmouth’s New College Try”, she talks about student consumption of alcohol on Dartmouth campus and how the school plans to work on this problem.  The kairos of this article, or the timeliness, could go on into perpetuity.  College students drinking alcohol at alarming amounts has been something that has taken place for decades and is always a relevant issue.  Her beginning of the article, which includes a hook, draws in her readers.  She starts off with a little joke, tying in the alcohol issue that Dartmouth is trying to address to the idea of the “new college try”.  She also includes all schools: “and, by the way, on almost every college campus across the country.”

Marcus isn’t afraid to use colloquialisms and informal diction in her writing.  Some examples of this include “(Fraternities, that’s you)”, “so pregaming becomes dicier”, and “–dare I mention it–“.  These phrases add spark and sizzle to her writing.  Also to keep her writing interesting, she varies paragraph length.  There are 2 examples of her using one sentence as a paragraph: “Seriously, if these people put as much dedication into schoolwork as they do into obtaining alcohol, they’d all be Rhodes scholars.”, and “For this we’re spending $65,000 a year?”  Along the same lines as the varied paragraph structure, Marcus also throws grammar to the wind in an effort to make a point.  Two examples of this would be, “But it could perhaps be reduced.” and “Mondays, ditto, because ‘senior societies’ meet then.”

The data and grounds that Marcus uses to support her argument as she progresses through the paper center around alcohol consumption before and after students get in to Dartmouth.  One of the data she uses is “(72 percent non-drinkers at Dartmouth, compared with 59 percent nationally)” and how by the middle of the term, “35 percent become high-risk drinkers. . . compared with 26 percent among college students nationwide.”  Closer to the end of this article, Marcus uses a turn and presents her own argument: “Still, if students can drink this much and maintain 3.8 GPAs, something seems wrong.”  She discusses how students drink due to too much pressure, not because there isn’t enough pressure placed on them.

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Analyzing Marcus’ “Dartmouth’s New College Try”

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