Compare and Contrast Essay: Narrative and Descriptive Essays

Topics: Essay, Maya Angelou, Writing Pages: 6 (1036 words) Published: September 26, 2015

Compare and Contrast Essay
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Academicians argue that, a powerful reader paints a picture on a reader’s mind. Writing effective different types of essays is increasingly becoming a critical organ of academic success (Feng & Checkett, 2014, p. 152). There are two major types of essays, narrative and descriptive. While the two might be appropriate in academic writing, one is arguably effective that the other. Narrative essays tells a story from personal experiences whereby; the use of first persona “I” is commonly used. While it may seem convincing, narrative essay communicates shallow message to the reader. Grasping the attention of a reader requires the narrator to paint a picture in the reader’s mind. Descriptive essay is the most effective writing. It not only gives the reader a broader perception of the message but also, helps in broadening the mind of the reader. An effective writer depicts the ability to paint a communicating picture in the reader’s mind.

Narrative and descriptive essays have an identical objective, communicating to the reader. While they may seem to be identical, there are several things that distinguish the two organs. For instance, narrative style is usually based on a personal experience and uses the first person tense. In academic learning, the use of first person is not highly fostered and this makes narrative essay less effective (Feng & Checkett, 2014, p. 89). In addition, it communicates shallow message to the reader and is vivid. For instance, in the essay I want a wife by Judy Brady the narrator uses first person tense throughout the essay. This is a good example of narrative essay. Although the reader can barely understand why the narrator wants a wife and why they choose to go to school, the essay does not communicate effectively (Brady 1972, 15). An effective writer does not allow the reader to make conclusive ideas about their work. Narrative essay is evidently, less effective than descriptive essay. It narrows down every item and makes conclusions for the reader. Most readers’ intentions are learning from what they read which is helpful in their academic and which helps them in standardized learning.

An effective writer paints a picture on the reader’s mind which ensures engaging and captivating the reader (Chesla & Research and Education Association, 2008, p. 165). Evidently, descriptive essay has been acknowledged by many educators and students as being the most effective essay in academic success. It has the ability of painting a picture on the reader’s mind with words. Using words, the narrator describes an event, place or an animal hence; captivates the reader such that they are unable to put down what they are reading. In addition, descriptive essay paints a bigger picture in the reader’s mind that leaves them quenching for more. It has the ability to string along the reader to the end before they can make a final judgment of what the writer is communicating. For instance, in caged bird a poem by Maya Angelou, the narrator says “the caged bird sings, with fearful trill of things unknown but longed for still and his tune heard on the distant hill, fort the caged bird sings for freedom (Angelou, 1983, 8).” The art behind the poet’s art of communication is descriptive and quite helpful in academic learning. The poet of the caged bird manages to paint the picture of a caged bird in the reader’s mind through descriptive essay. This according to critics and low learners might be deemed as mind boggling, however; according to educators this is one of the most effective ways of learning. Narrative and descriptive essays are meant to communicate messages to the reader regardless of their different approaches. For instance in I need a wife by Judy Brady the author blatant says, “I want a wife” this communicates his main message. On the other hand, Maya Angelou in a descriptive essay depicts the quest for freedom...

References: Angelou M. (1983). The poetry Foundation: Caged Bird: Random House.
Brady J. (1972). I want a wife: MS: Magazines &Judy Syfers.
Chesla, E. L., & Research and Education Association. (2008). Interpreting literature & the arts. Piscataway, NJ: Research & Education Association.
Feng-Checkett, G., & Checkett, L. (2014). The write start: Paragraph to essay: with student and professional readings. Boston: Wadsworth, Cengage Learning.
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