Using Concessions in a Thesis Statement

A thesis statement is the most important part of your argument. It should clearly indicate your position on the topic and provide your readers with an understanding of what you will discuss in your paper. Sometimes, thesis statements include concessions. Concessions are statements that admit that your paper doesn’t address some important issues or acknowledge a different perspective. Learn more about concessions in this quick guide from

Writing Concessions

Also known as concessive clauses, concessions usually start with a concession phrase or word, such as “even though,” “although,” “regardless of,” “despite,” or “while.” For example: “Even though coal mining creates jobs, its impact on the environment outweighs such benefits.” The same thesis statement can also end with a concession: “Coal mining creates thousands of jobs; however, its negative impact on the environment is a much more important issue.”

Where to Use Concessions

Usually, a concession precedes the main part of a thesis statement. This approach allows you to make sure that readers will focus on your idea because people tend to remember the last idea in a series. This approach also helps to prepare readers for the first paragraph, which will likely support your thesis. Keep in mind that a concessionary can also be an independent sentence. We recommend that you experiment with different approaches to choose the most persuasive one.

Addressing Opposite Points

One of the main purposes of a concession is to acknowledge another perspective. If you demonstrate that you understand a competing point, your concession can make your argument more authoritative. Thesis statements of this kind are very effective because they don’t follow a binary logic. Concessions allow you to demonstrate the complexity of a topic, explaining different perspectives and the strengths of your point.

Limit Your Scope

A concession can also help you indicate that you’re aware of other aspects of your topic but not going to discuss them in the paper. Such a concession is necessary if you write about a broad topic because you need to narrow down your thesis. Acknowledge other aspects of the topic in the form of a concession and then clarify what exactly you’re going to consider.

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