Analyzing Alfie Kohn's Essay To Degrading

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Alfie Kohn’s essay “From Grading to Degrading” initially impresses the reader. At a glance, the ideas imbedded in the text appear radically revolutionary, yet reasonable, intelligent and logical. Unfortunately, the promise of a good essay is marred by excess personal emotion that clouds the judgment of the writer, along with ill-timed references to the author’s extensive research. The writing is this essay’s redeeming quality. The polished yet simple language captivates the reader. It is sophisticated enough to convey a sense of authority, and yet, it manages to stay away from high-flown language that would alienate many audiences. Kohn chooses his words carefully. He wants his audience to understand his stance with the least amount of confusion possible. This makes the text easier to analyze and enables the reader to form their own opinions. Alfie Kohn as an impressive arsenal of research available. Unfortunately, he just does not know how to use it effectively. Research is a powerful persuasive tactic, but he abuses it. The article is thoroughly woven with (Last Name, Year) in the first few paragraphs, but he uses them less as the article continues. Perhaps he had no original ideas of his own for the first part of the article and had to rely on a crutch. Regardless,…show more content…
However, these are variables that cannot be accounted for. Kohn, as an educator himself, is frustrated by the mindset of the student population. Seeing students mind-numbingly trudging through the production line that the modern education system has evolved into must be disheartening. This personal emotion prevents Kohn from realizing that assessment and competition coexist. Even if teachers use written assessments, some students will still try to defeat their fellow classmates. Changing the method of assessment will not fix

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