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How to write a comparative essay

Perhaps you were asked a comparative essay at school, or you need to write a comprehensive comparative report at work. To write a great comparative text, you need to start by identifying two entities that have enough similarities and differences that lend themselves to meaningful comparison. An example would be two sports teams or two forms of government. Then, you need to find at least two or three points that you can compare them against, using research and evidence on domyessay and structuring your work logically to impress and engage your readers. Comparative essay writing is an important skill that will come in handy more than once in your studies or even your career.

Content preparation

Analyze the question carefully.  You may already have some great writing ideas in your head, but if they don't exactly fit your topic, you will lose points. Read the assignment statement, leading questions (or heading if available), and underline key phrases. Keep a list of them in front of you throughout your work.

Often the fact that the essay should be comparative is indicated by such words in the text of the assignment as "compare", "contrast", "similarities", "differences" and so on.

Note if the task has any restrictions.

Determine what type of comparative essay you need to write. Sometimes everything is quite simple - you need to compare two objects with each other, but sometimes you need to start with such a comparison and comparison, and then develop an assessment or a justified position on their basis. In such cases, simply pointing out the similarities and differences between objects will not be enough.

If the assignment implies that comparison will only be part of your job, it should usually include questions that point to it. For example: "Choose an idea or theme - love, beauty or time - and consider how it was reflected in the work of two poets of the Renaissance." This means that you need to choose two poets of the desired era and compare them, but not in general, but specifically: how one of the proposed ideas is reflected in their creations.

If the wording of the assignment is not very clear to you, check with the teacher. Better to ask a couple of questions than to write the entire essay wrong.

List the similarities and differences between the objects being compared. To identify signs of similarity is the basic task of comparative work, but you must show that objects are still different from each other, so that a good essay will definitely indicate signs of difference. By examining how objects differ from each other, you can make a deeper comparison.

It is best to start by making a list of features that are common to the objects in question and that differ.

Evaluate your list to find the arguments you need when you write my essay and reread it carefully and try to identify a specific topic or pattern. This will help you decide what will serve as a base for comparison. After that, you should outline the main structural units of the essay and its main idea.

If you want, you can highlight points in different colors that relate to different points of comparison.

For example, comparing two novels, you can highlight the similarities of the characters in pink, the setting in blue, and the issues raised in green.

Choose a basis for comparison. This gives you context: how exactly are you going to compare the two objects? The comparison may be based, for example, on a certain theoretical approach, a question or problem to which you are looking for an answer, a historical theme. Comparison should be based on a specific thesis or idea that determines why you are comparing these two objects.

The comparison basis can be specified in the assignment. Be sure to read it carefully.

The basis of comparison can be related to the topic, individual features or details of the compared objects.

The comparison base can be called differently, so don’t get lost if your teacher doesn’t use this exact wording.

Keep in mind that if the comparison objects are too similar, it will be difficult to write a good essay. The purpose of the comparison is to draw interesting parallels and nudge the reader to new conclusions. This means that for successful work, you should choose objects that are quite different from each other.

Examine the compared objects.  You need to demonstrate a deep understanding of them, but do not provide more details than the format of the assignment allows. Compare objects on several aspects without trying to cover everything.

Perhaps the assignment does not require research, or it will be superfluous. If your comparative essay does not intend to include a research portion, do not include it.

A comparative essay on historical, social, or scientific topics is more likely to suggest research, while an essay that compares two literary works is more likely to not.

If you are citing, please cite the source and quote in accordance with the rules.

Prepare a thesis statement. Each essay should contain a clear and intelligible thesis statement. Even if you yourself did not choose the basis of comparison, but simply received such a task, you need to write in one sentence why you are making the comparison. The comparison should reveal something about the objects or their relationship to each other, and your thesis statement should indicate what you are revealing.

The thesis statement must contain a specific statement related to the subject, which you will describe, when you do my essay, it is good if this statement is somewhat contradictory or allows for different interpretations. As this will allow you to build good reasoning.

Organization of content

Draw a plan. Before you start writing your essay, it's worth planning how it will be organized. The uniqueness of comparative essays is that there are several strategies for constructing them, and you can choose any.

You can make a traditional outline, but even a simple list of points in the order in which you want to put them will be helpful.

Key points can be written on pieces of paper or stickers (or typed on a computer, printed and cut out), and then swapped in different ways until you decide on the order of presentation.

Dedicate each paragraph to a different aspect.  This means that in each paragraph you will write about both objects, comparing them on a certain basis. In the first paragraph, you will compare them in one aspect, in the second - in the second, and so on, each time placing the objects in the same sequence (first characterize the first, then the second, without swapping them).

The advantage of this structure is that throughout the work the reader focuses on the comparison, and you, as the author, have to pay equal attention to each aspect of the comparison.

This method is especially recommended for long essays or complex subjects, where both the author and the reader can become easily confused.

Alternate objects from paragraph to paragraph. This means that the first paragraph will reveal one aspect of the subject, the second - the same aspect of another subject; in the third paragraph, the second aspect of the first item will be described, in the fourth - the same aspect of the second item, and so on, without interchanging the objects.

The advantage of this structure is that it allows you to discuss different aspects of objects in greater detail, and the transition from one object to another, if they are strikingly different, will not be so abrupt.

This method is especially recommended if you need to write a deeper essay with more detail.

Describe immediately everything about one object.  This means that the first few paragraphs will be devoted to discussing the first subject, and the next - the second, and all aspects will be considered in the same order.

This is the most dangerous method, as the comparison can be one-sided, and it will be difficult for the reader to follow your thought.

This method is recommended for short essays on simple topics, the development of which the reader can easily keep in mind.

Writing process

Write your essay out of order.  As a rule, writing essays strictly from beginning to end is more difficult than out of order. Also, when you get to the end, you might want to revisit what was written at the beginning. So you can write in a different order, but the thesis statement should always be written at the very beginning.

Write the body first. Work through all the information you have and see what kind of story you get. It is only when you process your data that you understand what the bulk of your work will be.

Then write a conclusion. Now that you have tackled the toughest challenge, you have a clear idea of ​​the main idea of ​​your work. Forge the iron while it's hot. Start your conclusion by rephrasing your thesis statement.

At the end, write an introduction. Start your introduction with a phrase that grabs the reader's attention. Since you've already written your essay, choose what will draw attention to it in the best possible way, be it a quote, a statistic, a fact, a rhetorical question, or a curious incident. Then write 1-2 sentences about your topic, narrowing it down to a thesis statement. This will be the introduction.

Write the body paragraphs.  The first sentence of each body paragraph (often called a key sentence) prepares the reader for what the paragraph will cover. In the middle of the paragraph, you disclose the information you have gathered, and in the last sentence you make a small interim conclusion based on that information. Be careful not to break the paragraph boundaries, drawing general conclusions - this is the task of the final part.

Structure your paragraphs using one of the methods listed in Part 2. Once you have decided on the points to compare against, decide which body structure you will use to present the data in an optimal way. It is recommended that you sketch out a plan first in order to successfully organize the transitions.

Be very careful not to compare objects in different ways. Comparing the color of one object with the size of another will in no way give the reader the opportunity to compare them.

Write a conclusion . The finished essay should give the reader the impression that he has learned something new and that he has read the finished text, and should not search for missing pages. Start your conclusion with a short summary of the points you have covered, and then make a more detailed conclusion about the two items. (Note that your conclusion should be based on facts, not personal preference, especially if the assignment recommended a neutral tone.) The last sentence should leave the reader with the feeling that all the ideas expressed in the essay are brought together and form a single whole.

Keep in mind that your comparisons do not always lead to obvious conclusions, especially since people tend to evaluate the same things differently. Specify if necessary.

If the objects are fundamentally different from each other, it is sometimes useful to emphasize their common feature before drawing a conclusion.

Write an introduction.  Start with a general point that indicates the similarities of the discussed objects, and move on to the specific topic of the essay. At the end of the introduction, write a thesis statement that first talks about which aspects you plan to compare, and then what conclusion you come to based on them.

Check the writing.  If the case suffers, it is best to postpone work for the day. Go somewhere, grab a snack, get distracted - forget about your essay until tomorrow. When you start testing, remember that the two most important things are to identify problems and fix them. Do this in two passes. On the first reading, find the flaws in your work, and correct during the second reading. As much as you would like to immediately make corrections, it is better to check everything first, and only then fix it. This will ensure you have checked everything and will make the process faster and more efficient.

Even the best writers know that you can't write a good book without editing. To make every effort to write an essay means to carefully check it and make corrections.

If possible, ask a friend to read your essay: perhaps he will notice the mistakes that you missed.

If you are writing on a computer, it is sometimes useful to increase or decrease the font size while checking your work to change how the text looks visually. If you look at the same thing for a long time, the brain begins to see the expected, not the reality (the eye becomes blurred), and you may miss some mistakes.

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