Category Archives: Argumentative Essay

List of Research Topics for Argumentative Essay

List of Research Topics for Argumentative Essay
List of Research Topics for Argumentative Essay

Below are lists of possible research topics for evidence or counterarguments depending on which stance you take. These lists are just starting points and should be used for brainstorming and preliminary research.


  • Bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki
  • Concentration and internment camps
    o Treaty of New Echota
    o Trail of Tears
    o Japanese-, German-, and Italian-Americans, and Native Alaskans during WWII
    o Guantanamo Bay Detention Camp
  • Crimes against humanity
    o South African apartheid
  • Cruelty towards animals
  • Domestic Terrorism
    o Oklahoma City Bombing
  • Drug Wars
  • Genocides or Ethnic Cleansings
    o Turkish massacre of Armenians in WWI
    o Holocaust (NO!)
    o Pol Pot
    o 1994 Rwandan Genocide
  • Hate groups
    o Ku Klux Klan
    o Aryan Nations
    o Westboro Baptist Church
  • Hate crimes
    o 16th Street Baptist Church Bombing
    o Matthew Shepard murder
    o James Byrd Jr. murder
  • Human Trafficking
  • Massacres
    o Nanking Massacre
    o My Lai massacre
    o Kent State massacre
    o Wisconsin Sikh temple shooting
    o 2011 Tucson supermarket shooting
    o Boston Marathon Bombing
  • Psychology experiments
    o The Stanford Prison Experiment
    o Milgram Experiment
  • Salem Witch Trials
  • School shootings
    o Columbine High School
    o Virginia Tech
  • Slavery
  • War crimes
    o Bombing of Dresden in World War II
    o Abu Ghraib prison torture
  • Villains and Dictators
    o Idi Amin
    o Josef Mengele
    o Joseph Stalin
    o Muammar Qaddafi
    o Saddam Hussein
    o Bashar al-Assad


  • Nobel Peace Prize winners and nominees
    o Mother Teresa
    o 14TH Dalai Lama
    o Nelson Mandela
    o Martin Luther King Jr.
    o Mahatma Gandhi
    o Bono of U2
    o Al Gore
  • Philanthropic/altruistic individuals
    o Warren Buffett
    o Bill Gates
    § Eradicating Polio
    o The Giving Pledge campaign
  • Disaster relief aid and efforts
    o 9/11 first responders
    o 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami
    o 2010 Haiti earthquake
    o 2011 Joplin, Missouri tornado response
    o Hurricane Sandy
    o 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami
  • Japanese senior citizens tackle nuclear crisis at Fukushima following Tohoku
  • Heroes
    o Cesar Chavez
    o Miep Gies
    o Louis Pasteur
    o Jonas Salk (creates polio vaccine, tests it on himself, never patents it)
    o Frederick Douglass
    o Harriet Tubman
    o Oskar Schindler
  • Human rights/Humanitarian organizations
    o Amnesty International
    o American Red Cross
    o Doctors Without Borders (Medecins Sans Frontieres)
    o UNICEF
  • Non-profit /volunteer groups
    o Habitat for Humanity
    o Peace Corps
  • Strangers helping strangers
    o Donation of organs to strangers
    § Kidney transplants
    o Random Acts of Kindness (RAK) Foundation
    o Pay It Forward Movement
  • Underground Railroad
  • 9/12 Project

An Argumentative Research Paper

An Argumentative Research Paper
An Argumentative Research Paper

Your Task:

In your English class, you are reading and discussing Mark Twain’s satirical essay “The Lowest  Animal.” Your teacher tells you that some people would argue that Twain’s assessment of mankind  is accurate, while others would argue that Twain is generalizing—blaming certain atrocities from  history on all mankind as opposed to the few individuals that were truly responsible.

To explore this issue further, you will be provided two common research sources from your  teacher, and you will be responsible for finding two more sources on your own. Research  thoughtfully. Keep track of source information. You will need it for your works cited page. Read all  the sources carefully, and take notes on the information you find.

Your Assignment:

After completing your research, write an argumentative essay in which you take a stance on  the topic of mankind and whether humanity is innately kind or cruel. Make sure you establish an argumentative claim, address potential counterarguments, and support your claim with evidence from the sources you have gathered. Develop your ideas clearly and use your own words, except when quoting directly from a source. Be sure to reference each source by
author’s last name and page number when using facts or details taken directly from the sources.

– Your research paper must be at least 1000 words not including your Works Cited  page. Your final typed report must utilize MLA (Modern Language Association) format with 12 pt Times New Roman font, 1 inch margins on all sides, and correct headings and headers.

– Your final research must include a minimum of five sources (“The Lowest Animal,” two teacher-provided common sources, and two self-selected sources). You may choose to use more.

– Your final research paper must have a counterargument where you acknowledge an  opposing side of the argument but then deny all or part of its validity.

– Your final research paper must include at least two direct quotations. Remember to  lead into the quote with the author’s name and any appropriate credentials.

– Your final research paper must include two graphics (pictures, charts, etc.) to go  along with and additionally support your research and evidence. Graphics must enhance the information presented. Avoid inappropriate and distracting graphics.

– Plagiarism will result in a failing grade. Cite everything that is not common knowledge using in-text citations and list all sources in alphabetical order on a Works Cited page.

– Uses a formal, objective tone (Write in the third-person. No ‘I’ or ‘you’.)