Welcome, Student Name
| Student Demo |
Buy Now
Writing Skills
Establishing and Maintaining Theme or Main Idea
Recognize Effective Topic Sentences
Development of a Main Idea
Logical Sequence of Ideas
Effective Transitions
Sentence Construction, Grammar, and Usage
Spelling, Capitalization, and Punctuation
Analyzing and Revising Sentences
Practice Writing Tests

Main Menu
Exit Student Demo

Buy Now for $39.95 and begin using the entire course in less than two minutes

DEMONSTRATION ONLY: This demonstration presents an abbreviated version of the complete COMPASS course. Click 'Next' at the bottom of the screen or make a selection from the links on the left to begin. Not all links are available for the demo.

Establishing and Maintaining a Central Theme or Main Idea

Recognize Effective Topic Sentences

Just stating a main idea in a topic sentence is not enough to inform, to persuade, or to entertain your readers. You must develop the main idea with enough information to achieve your purpose.

As you read this paragraph, watch how the speaker tries to persuade you that something is wrong with the masculine ideal in the love relationship.




Mahesh was my friend. But I thought of him as a man who had been stunted by his relationship with Shoba. That had been achievement enough for him. Shoba admired him and needed him, and he was therefore content with himself, content with the person she admired. His only wish seemed to be to take care of this person. He dressed for her, preserved his looks for her. I used to think that when Mahesh considered himself physically he didn't compare himself with other men, or judge himself according to some masculine ideal, but saw only the body that pleased Shoba. He saw himself as his woman saw him; and that was why, though he was my friend, I thought that his devotion to Shoba had made him half a man, and ignoble.
(V. S. Naipaul, The Bend in the River)



Answer these questions about the relationship. Answers will vary.

1. What has his relationship with Shoba done to Mahesh?
Check answer

2. Why is Mahesh content with himself?
Check answer

3. What does Mahesh do to take care of the person Shoba loves?
Check answer

4. What is the result of Mahesh's devotion to Shoba?
Check answer