Revising a thesis statement through writing narratives

In the PDF for this page, the excerpt below follows an explanation of how I revised my preliminary thesis statement ( described in Lit Review→Thesis Statement) in the process of writing the opening historical narrative about Nightingale.

Revised thesis statement

Florence Nightingale had agreed to substitute as a head ward nurse at Middlesex Hospital in order to suss the set-up and staff there in the event that she decided not to pursue the proposed nursing superintendent position at King’s College Hospital; shortly after she arrived, cholera broke out in St. James, Westminster, and she remained at the Middlesex, which admitted many cholera patients, until after the local epidemic had peaked.

The revised thesis statement covers three elements: what I think happened, when, plus how/why it came about.  I’ll add a fourth, why I think the experience was significant for Nightingale, when unpacking her responses during the outbreak itself. (See “research essay” in Appendix A.)

This PDF is entitled, “Crafting the Nightingale narratives” and is an excerpt from 31 August 1854 (HU). The excerpt includes discussion of how to locate a person in the 1851 English census, historical possibility and probability, use of documentary and other evidence, and the narrative forms I employed in the narratives about Nightingale.