That doesn't mean you have to come up with your own theory, or that you have to make a completely original contribution to human thought. An ideal paper will be clear and straightforward (see below), will be accurate when it attributes views to other philosophers (see below), and will contain thoughtful critical responses to the texts we read. But you should try to come up with your own arguments, or your own way of elaborating or criticizing or defending some argument we looked at in class.
Merely summarizing what others have said won't be enough. These early stages will involve writing, but you won't yet be trying to write a complete paper.
Here, brainstorming is necessary but a review of existing resources would help a great deal in formulating a topic that has not been covered.
Before you can come up with a topic, it is also important to make sure it is interesting and would consequently illicit interest from philosophers who would want to read your work; not just your supervisor.
However, before you can pick on a topic that is desirable and within the realms of the study, it is important to take note of the fact that your writing can take either one of the two dimensions available.
It is either you examine existing literary piece on the topic in which case you topic will be based on this or you come up with your own.
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Then it goes on to do one or two of the following: No matter which of these aims you set for yourself, you have to explicitly present reasons for the claims you make.
Students often feel that since it's clear to them that some claim is true, it does not need much argument.