Florida Gateway College Conversion from Islam to Christianity

For this paper, you will be exploring an event (or series of events) that caused you to reevaluate your stance on a particular belief/bias/position. The goal of the paper is two-fold: to detail your beginning and ending positions, as well as describing and analyzing the event that caused you to change your mind. Why was this event significant? Why does this shift in belief matter? What were the consequences? Think of “Shooting Dad” by Sarah Vowell as possible model for this essay. The ideas that you will be exploring in this paper should be of major importance; a change in major, for example, rather than what color sweater you planned to wear today. Other topics people have successfully discussed have been relationship or location changes, religious conversions, and “what I want to be when I grow up.” Note: You may NOT write about any of the following topics: abortion, euthanasia, the death penalty, drug legalization, or gun control. The proportions of this paper are important; spend as much time talking about the event(s) that caused the shift as you do the before and after. In other words, if you spend a page telling what you used to believe, and a page telling what you believe now, then you should have at least two pages discussing the event that caused to you shift your postion. Length: 5-7 pages (1400-2000 words) Final Thoughts: A good rule of proportions is a ½-page introduction, 1 page on the initial position, 2-3 pages of the event(s) that shifted your perspective, and 1½ pages on the ending position and conclusion (in which you ponder the significance of this shift). One possible component of your paper may be to describe both the pro and the con of a given topic. If you cite any outside sources, you MUST put them in MLA format (see the textbook for specific details). This paper involves a discussion of opposing viewpoints. Remember to critique the ideas, not the idea-holder. You can say “The idea that the earth is flat is not logical,” but you cannot say, “If you believe the earth is flat you are a big fat stupid moron.” Also, remember that this is not a forum for converting your colleagues to your position; this is a narrative essay, not a persuasive one.

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