What is an Essay?

Topics: Essay, Writing, Alexander Pope Pages: 5 (1806 words) Published: February 20, 2013
An essay is a piece of writing which is often written from an author's personal point of view. Essays can consist of a number of elements, including: literary criticism, political manifestos, learned arguments, observations of daily life, recollections, and reflections of the author. The definition of an essay is vague, overlapping with those of an article and a short story. Almost all modern essays are written in prose, but works in verse have been dubbed essays (e.g.Alexander Pope's An Essay on Criticism and An Essay on Man). While brevity usually defines an essay, voluminous works like John Locke's An Essay Concerning Human Understanding and Thomas Malthus's An Essay on the Principle of Population are counterexamples.

 Descriptive Essay
Also known as descriptive writing, the descriptive essay is the most commonly-used essay format in schools. Taken simply, a descriptive essay is all about, well, describing – the who, what, when, where, and why of a particular topic and the relevant ideas connected to it. A descriptive essay is about telling something as it is, structuring it in such a way that would make sense to someone who’s reading it. Though descriptive, metaphors and analogies do figure in these types of essays, just that they are more devices of clarity than of literary merit.

Persuasive or Argumentative Essay
Just as it’s description, a persuasive essay usually means that you’re siding with a particular opinion, and is writing to establish the evidences for or against it. As the principle of arguments usually allow, the essay is constructed so that each assumption is proved valid, and each point structure to lead to one’s conclusion.

Compare and Contrast Essay
When one is called upon to write a compare and contrast essay, it usually requires one to talk about two distinct points and expound upon the similarities and differences of each. Narrative Essay
A narrative essay usually tells a story and reflects the personal perspective of the author. It attempts to present ideas and topics via story-telling, mindful to expound on the main points of the article through the story itself. Evaluation Essay

Evaluation essays are usually academic reviews of a particular idea or topic. Though you may right with an informal position, it’s usually done as an exposition of style rather than requirement.

Descriptive essayI was born and raised in South America, a continent with a lot of mountain ranges–ideal for mountain climbing and hiking-long winding rivers, lush forests, wonderful beaches, as well as valleys with breathtaking views.  Based on experience, I can say that it is a tropical country; which was confirmed during my history class in sixth grade.  In a country where it’s hot and humid, my fashion statement is sporting a large white (sometimes blue) t-shirt and a Hawaiian type shorts.  A dark pair of shades is also an important part of my get-up as it protects my eyes from the sun’s harsh rays.  Being born in South America you might think that I have dark hair with brown eyes and a charming smile; a typical Cabana boy.

Persuasive or Agumentative essay
In the twenty-first century, people have practically forgotten how important it is to connect with nature. Despite all the technological advances and scientific inventions that make us believe we have nothing in common with the rest of the animal world, we are still part of the planet’s fauna, whether we realize it or not. Needless to say, back when humanity’s main achievements were the invention of a round wheel, or specific tools for farming agriculture, people were very dependent on nature and paid a lot of attention to the changes of its course. Now, with the technological revolutions and discoveries that made our past history, we seem to pay extremely little attention to nature, getting more and more disconnected from it every day. However, the links that were initially there, couldn’t just disappear and there is a number of...
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