It’s always a struggle for an international student whose first language is entirely irrelevant to English like me to go through a course whose primary purpose is to use the limited English skills to demonstrate and solve a social issue on paper. However, life would be boring without all the challenge and at this stage I must say, I found more about myself throughout the learning curve, and I truly appreciate the opportunity. The progress and achievement of this course come from three different level as further elaborated below.
Rhetoric works such as writing is all about having something readable and understandable to other readers. In other words, an essay is useless if other people can’t understand the thesis or follow the writer’s purpose. That’s why I find the online discussion extremely useful. By sharing my opinion and reading from others, our thoughts and ideas on literature works are exchanged. Online discussion is even more efficient compared to a regular class meeting for a writing class since students have more time to think about a topic and write it down in formal language and more importantly, another reader would have more time to read and consider the rhetoric purpose behind the author. My topic, for instance, is inspired by a discussion session online when one of my peers posted the question that if we change the gene behind our skin, are we the same person anymore. He further elaborated the topic with transhumanism that we become a new person every day thus it’s no need to worry that our personal identity is lost during this changing process. My personality is very conservative when dealing with a new ideology thus I tend to pick some safe source without too much drama involved. Transhumanism certainly falls into this category since the goal of human society is to become better in every way, and this ideology doesn’t conflict with any of my knowledge based. It’s safe to conclude that the online discussion had promoted me to this level of critical thinking, and it’s actually worth it.
When writing an essay, the most difficult thing for me is to set the boundary for each subparagraph, since an article’s goal is to narrate and persuade, it’s tough to differentiate each subsection clearly since the overall purpose is the same. My initial draft has this issue that it just seemed that Genetic engineering and external technology had overlaps. When reader approaches my draft, it’s very easy to get bored by the structure since the similarity in the rhetoric and logic are quite similar, and I believe the failure of dividing each supporting idea clearly is the root cause of the most skimming issue. This problem comes from multiple degrees of dysfunction. The first issue is my shallow understanding of the topic; transhumanism can be quite complicated, and I have to admit that my initial understanding of this ideology is indeed limited. It has nothing to do with my writing skill but my thinking process, I always tried to match my perception to the article I found to see if I can come up with a line that could lift my whole story. After going through tons of reading until the second draft period, I realized that I actually have enough material to juggle around the topic to come up with a through conclusion with all the elements from each article on my side. The second reason cause my initial dysfunction is the issue itself; transhumanism comes with two benefits that are internal and external. When bringing up the topic with a clear boundary, the approach should take place in the area they conflict so that the reader could easily differentiate them, in my second draft, I changed the point to internal genetic approach and external environmental approach to creating a much distinguish argument.
My first draft is certainly problematic. I tend to generalize all the points I want to make by using terms such as “everybody”, “we all” and Normal. That’s the major issue for a writer with a very shallow understanding of the problem. It’s very common mistake that we take our perception as a general knowledge and relay them on the entire human species. Donald Trump, for instance, tend to conclude that all Americans wants more money which is his mistake. This initial finding had pushed me to further look into the problem to see what others are thinking about the problem and the more I look into it, the more I find my draft one problematic. Then it comes to the issue of logical thinking. On page five of my initial draft, Mr. Jared Brian McCoy commented “You’re switching between challenges and technologies very quickly in this section. Why not just start with genetically engineered children?” (McCoy 5). The reason for this robust transition is that I could not find a logical link between genetically modified children to the issue of internal technology, I took the approach to raising more questions here for the reader rather than addressing them myself. So in my second draft, I used genetically engineered children as an example by establishing the advantage of this technology that is largely accepted by the general public to demonstrate the benefit of the internal technology behind the transhumanism. It’s much more efficient method, and apparently it provided better flow to the rhetoric.
During the peer review stage, I found multiple useful comments on my draft. “Since you mentioned The Philosophy of Transhumanism, why don’t you use some quotes from it directly to solve the issue of reading’s different standard on humanity.” That’s a very useful comment since it pointed out that we human see things differently, and we have a very different understanding of humanity, I have to set up a reference at the beginning so that the reader are able to tell what mine is, so I further quoted the Philosophy of Transhumanism to demonstrate that. The second useful comment is quite similar to the first one since, during the writing process, I assumed that most readers has had through an understanding of each term such us on page four, the term “disability” is used as a supporting idea without further explaining what my reference is for the duration disability. Lastly, on my last paragraph, the comment was “You listed all the questions of the limitation of transhumanism. However I don’t see any example of them, why don’t you address them a little bit?” It’s an inspiring comment. However, I don’t think I solved the problem well enough. Overall, the issue of raising the politics of toleration is that though transhumanism had provided so much benefit to the society, it’s tough to be applied to the entire society, I found it very difficult to find any logical way to still use this flaw of the ideology to still gain value to my argument. I finally ended up with the following words “Since the internal technologies focus on making stronger and more intellectual human beings rather than more adaptable people, there is no guarantee that it will do actual benefits to human beings” (Li 5-6).
The overall writing process is quite a painful process; I have to get out of my comfort zone many times, and it’s not an easy process. However, I’m glad that at this stage, I have some completed work