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kriz
09-22-2010, 03:41 PM
Thanks in advance for taking the time to read this.
I got the prompt from the CollegeBoard Offical Study Guide (5th prompt) and wrote the the essay in 25 minutes. I word processed it afterwards. If you take the time to grade this, please grade on a scale of 0-6.


Topic: Is conscience a more powerful motivator than money, fame and power?

Conscience can be a powerful force, controlling a person to do what he or she believes is right but money, power and fame can go against this force, even if it far from what is morally right. The Legend of the ring of Gyges, The Enemy of the People and The Visit are examples of how money, power and fame are stronger motivators that conscience.

In the legend of the ring of Gyges, a shepherd obtains a ring with extraordinary powers. By adjusting the ring, the shepherd could make himself invisible. He used this newfound ability to seduce the queen and kill the king, taking the throne for himself. With his amazing capabilities, he decided to side with money, fame and power. What he did was morally wrong. Conscience did not stop him, showing that the desire for power is much stronger than his conscience.

Another example is found in The Enemy of The People. In this novel, the doctor tries to find loopholes in the administration of the town baths because he was ignored when he was the medical advisor. He tests the baths and realizes that the baths of the town are poisonous and wants to tell the people even though it will destroy the town. He wants to rove the town wrong for not listening to him before. The mayor finds out and tries to keep it silent knowing that the town will prosper from the baths and that visitors will be poisoned. The vistors go to the baths in hope to heal and relax from their illnesses not realizing that the baths would cause sickness. The townspeople hae meeting and agree with the mayor, keeping the baths open. The baths were deleterious to the health of the visitors but instead of reconstructing the baths and doing what is morally right, the people succumb to the power of money.

In The Visit, a millionaress, Claire Zachannan, offers a bankrupt town a million dollars for Ill's death. Ill was Claire's old lover who betrayed her years ago but he has become the most popular personality in the town and is the town's future mayor. Even so, the town turns against him, spending money it doesn't have, knowing that Ill's death will pay for it. Even Ill's own family enjoys luxuries that it can't afford and betrays him. The town struggled, deciding whether it should stay with their morals or kill Ill. It was a decision between the financial downfall of the town and the moral deterioration of the town. During a town meeting, the people vote for Ill to be killed and he dies soon after. The town's desire for money was a stronger motivator than conscience.

Through these example, it is evident that money, power and fame are more powerful motivators than the conscience. People actively go against their morals to acheive other materialistic goals. The shepard from the legend of the ring of Gyges killed the king, the townspeople from The Visit killed their future mayor and the townspeople of The Enemy of the People decided that that it was better to poison visitors than to spend money on reconstruction. All of these people go agaisnt their conscience, proving that the authority of money, fame and power can easily crush the force of the person's conscience.



Thank you very much!
Feedback would be great.

I went to Princeton Review before and they seem to want a variety of examples in the essay and more historical examples. I'm aware that I don't have much variety but I did the best I could for the 25 minutes I had.

A somewhat unrelated question: would it count against me for not mentioning the name of the author? I know the names of the authors now, but I couldn't think of them while writing the essay.
Also, I thought of using historical examples such as Robespierre but as an example for this essay would he be controversial? I would have said that he was a tyrant who maintained his power by executing people who were merely suspected of having deviated ideas or possibly against the rebellion.

Erin
09-27-2010, 12:20 AM
I've got literally a couple of minutes that I can spend on this post; I hope that's okay. First, this is a very nice start. You seem comfortable with writing and with deeper, more philosophical ideas. You give a lot of examples; most of the essays I read give two examples only, as it's hard to develop the ideas for three examples in 25 minutes. I think you should develop your paragraphs a bit more to improve the essay, which would probably require that you reduce the number of examples you use. I actually think that your introduction and conclusion are very interesting; try to incorporate some of what you do in the intro and conclusion in the body paragraphs.

Score? I'd say either a 4/6 or a 5/6, leaning more towards the 5/6.
I went to Princeton Review before and they seem to want a variety of examples in the essay and more historical examples. I'm aware that I don't have much variety but I did the best I could for the 25 minutes I had. Variety, in both content and relevance, is always good. If you use examples that are too similar, you'll get a lower score.


A somewhat unrelated question: would it count against me for not mentioning the name of the author? I know the names of the authors now, but I couldn't think of them while writing the essay.
Also, I thought of using historical examples such as Robespierre but as an example for this essay would he be controversial? I would have said that he was a tyrant who maintained his power by executing people who were merely suspected of having deviated ideas or possibly against the rebellion.You shouldn't be penalized for not remembering something; try to give some other background information if you can.

If you speak tactfully about such sensitive things, I think you should be okay. After all, that's what we do in college--explore the full range of humanity.

Overall, good job! :)

kriz
09-27-2010, 02:26 PM
Thanks so much for you time and help, Erin!

I guess I'll spend a bit more time on developing the paragraphs. Perhaps more time on the body paragraphs?
And thank you for answering my additional questions :)

Erin
09-27-2010, 07:05 PM
Yes, focus on the body paragraphs. If you want, rewrite one of the body paragraphs from this essay and post here. I should be able to give you feedback. :)