Unity

Writing has unity when the supporting sentences all work together to support the topic sentences. Paragraphs that lack unity are confusing to the reader because some ideas do not seem to belong.

Compare the examples below. The first paragraph has poor unity because there are sentences that do not support the topic sentence.

Example: Body Paragraph (Poor Unity)

       Chopin was a musical prodigy. While many people are aware of the great pieces he wrote, not as many people are aware of how young he was when he began his musical career. Chopin published one of his first pieces at the age of seven and one year later performed in a public concert (Plantinga & Hendley, 2018). At an astonishingly young age, he truly showed great musical talent in both of these things. While it may be hard to imagine, his interest in music may have begun even earlier. "In infancy Chopin was always strangely moved when listening to his mother or eldest sister playing the piano" (Plantinga & Hendley, 2018, "Life," para. 1). Many children show some response to music in their infancy. This early sensitivity may have helped his early desire to create and perform. It is clear that he was musically gifted very early in life.

Example: Body Paragraph (Revised for Unity)

       Chopin was a musical prodigy. While many people are aware of the great pieces he wrote, not as many people are aware of how young he was when he began his musical career. Chopin published one of his first pieces at the age of seven and one year later performed in a public concert (Plantinga & Hendley, 2018). At an astonishingly young age, he truly showed great musical talent in both of these things. While it may be hard to imagine, his interest in music may have begun even earlier. "In infancy Chopin was always strangely moved when listening to his mother or eldest sister playing the piano" (Plantinga & Hendley, 2018, "Life," para. 1). Many children show some response to music in their infancy. This early sensitivity may have helped his early desire to create and perform. It is clear that he was musically gifted very early in life.

Exercise: Revise for unity