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An essay is, generally, a piece of writing that gives the author's own
argument In logic Logic is an interdisciplinary field which studies truth and reasoning Reason is the capacity of consciously making sense of things, applying logic Logic (from Ancient Greek, Greek: grc, wikt:λογική, λογική, la ...
, but the definition is vague, overlapping with those of a
letter Letter, letters, or literature may refer to: Characters typeface * Letter (alphabet) A letter is a segmental symbol A symbol is a mark, sign, or word that indicates, signifies, or is understood as representing an idea, Object (philosophy ...
, a
paper Paper is a thin sheet material Material is a substance Substance may refer to: * Substance (Jainism), a term in Jain ontology to denote the base or owner of attributes * Chemical substance, a material with a definite chemical composition ...
, an
article Article often refers to: * Article (grammar) An article is any member of a class of dedicated words that are used with noun phrases to mark the identifiability of the referents of the noun phrases. The category of articles constitutes a part ...
, a
pamphlet A pamphlet is an unbound book A book is a medium for recording information Information is processed, organised and structured data Data (; ) are individual facts, statistics, or items of information, often numeric. In a more te ...

pamphlet
, and a
short story A short story is a piece of prose Prose is a form of written or spoken language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin ''communicare'', meaning "to share" or "to be in relation with") is "an appa ...
. Essays have traditionally been sub-classified as formal and informal. Formal essays are characterized by "serious purpose, dignity, logical organization, length," whereas the informal essay is characterized by "the personal element (self-revelation, individual tastes and experiences, confidential manner), humor, graceful style, rambling structure, unconventionality or novelty of theme," etc. Essays are commonly used as
literary criticism Literary criticism (or literary studies) is the study, evaluation, and interpretation of literature. Modern literary criticism is often influenced by literary theory, which is the philosophical analysis, philosophical discussion of literature ...
, political
manifestos A manifesto is a published declaration of the intentions, motives, or views of the issuer, be it an individual, group, political party or government. A manifesto usually accepts a previously published opinion or public consensus or promotes a ...
, learned
arguments In logic Logic is an interdisciplinary field which studies truth and reasoning. Informal logic seeks to characterize Validity (logic), valid arguments informally, for instance by listing varieties of fallacies. Formal logic represents stat ...

arguments
, observations of daily life, recollections, and reflections of the author. Almost all modern essays are written in
prose Prose is a form of written or spoken language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin ''communicare'', meaning "to share" or "to be in relation with") is "an apparent answer to the painful divisions ...

prose
, but works in
verse Verse may refer to: Poetry * Verse, an occasional synonym for poetry Poetry (derived from the Greek language, Greek ''poiesis'', "making") is a form of literature that uses aesthetics, aesthetic and often rhythmic qualities of language ...

verse
have been dubbed essays (e.g.,
Alexander Pope Alexander Pope (21 May 1688 – 30 May 1744) is seen as one of the greatest English poets and the foremost poet of the early 18th century. He is best known for satirical and discursive poetry, including ''The Rape of the Lock ''The Rape o ...

Alexander Pope
's ''
An Essay on Criticism ''An Essay on Criticism'' is one of the first major poems written by the English writer Alexander Pope Alexander Pope (21 May 1688 – 30 May 1744) is seen as one of the greatest English poets and the foremost poet of the early 18th century ...
'' and ''
An Essay on Man ''An Essay on Man'' is a poem published by Alexander Pope Alexander Pope (21 May 1688 – 30 May 1744) is seen as one of the greatest English poets and the foremost poet of the early 18th century. He is best known for satirical and discursive ...
''). While brevity usually defines an essay, voluminous works like
John Locke John Locke (; 29 August 1632 – 28 October 1704) was an English philosopher and physician, widely regarded as one of the most influential of Enlightenment Enlightenment, enlighten or enlightened may refer to: Age of Enlightenment * ...

John Locke
's ''
An Essay Concerning Human Understanding ''An Essay Concerning Human Understanding'' is a work by John Locke John Locke (; 29 August 1632 – 28 October 1704) was an English philosopher and physician, widely regarded as one of the most influential of Enlightenment Enl ...
'' and
Thomas Malthus Thomas Robert Malthus (; 13/14 February 1766 – 23 December 1834) was an English cleric Clergy are formal leaders within established religion Religion is a - of designated and practices, , s, s, , , , , or , that relates humanit ...

Thomas Malthus
's ''
An Essay on the Principle of Population The book ''An Essay on the Principle of Population'' was first published anonymously in 1798, but the author was soon identified as Thomas Robert Malthus Thomas Robert Malthus (; 13/14 February 1766 – 23 December 1834) was an English cler ...

An Essay on the Principle of Population
'' are counterexamples. In some countries (e.g., the United States and Canada), essays have become a major part of formal
education Education is the process of facilitating learning, or the acquisition of knowledge, skills, value (ethics), values, morals, beliefs, habits, and personal development. Educational methods include teaching, training, storytelling, discussion ...

education
. Secondary students are taught structured essay formats to improve their writing skills; admission essays are often used by
universities A university () is an of (or ) and which awards s in several . Universities typically offer both and programs in different schools or faculties of learning. The word ''university'' is derived from the ''universitas magistrorum et scholari ...

universities
in selecting applicants, and in the humanities and social sciences essays are often used as a way of assessing the performance of students during final exams. The concept of an "essay" has been extended to other media beyond writing. A
film essay An essay is, generally, a piece of writing that gives the author's own argument, but the definition is vague, overlapping with those of a Letter (message), letter, a term paper, paper, an article (publishing), article, a pamphlet, and a short ...
is a movie that often incorporates documentary filmmaking styles and focuses more on the evolution of a theme or idea. A photographic essay covers a topic with a linked series of
photographs A photograph (also known as a photo) is an image An image (from la, imago) is an artifact that depicts visual perception Visual perception is the ability to interpret the surrounding environment (biophysical), environment thro ...
that may have accompanying text or
captions Caption may refer to: *An element of comics where words appear in a separate box, see Glossary of comics terminology#Caption *Caption (comics convention), a small press and independent comic convention held annually in Oxford, England *Caption (law ...
.


Definitions

The word ''essay'' derives from the French infinitive , "to try" or "to attempt". In English ''essay'' first meant "a trial" or "an attempt", and this is still an alternative meaning. The Frenchman
Michel de Montaigne Michel Eyquem de Montaigne ( ; ; 28 February 1533 – 13 September 1592), also known as Lord of Montaigne, was one of the most significant philosophers of the French Renaissance The French Renaissance was the cultural Culture ...

Michel de Montaigne
(1533–1592) was the first author to describe his work as essays; he used the term to characterize these as "attempts" to put his thoughts into writing. Subsequently, ''essay'' has been defined in a variety of ways. One definition is a "prose composition with a focused subject of discussion" or a "long, systematic discourse". It is difficult to define the genre into which essays fall.
Aldous Huxley Aldous Leonard Huxley (26 July 1894 – 22 November 1963) was an English writer and philosopher. He wrote nearly 50 books—both novels and non-fiction works—as well as wide-ranging essays, narratives, and poems. Born into the prominent Huxl ...

Aldous Huxley
, a leading essayist, gives guidance on the subject. He notes that "the essay is a literary device for saying almost everything about almost anything", and adds that "by tradition, almost by definition, the essay is a short piece". Furthermore, Huxley argues that "essays belong to a literary species whose extreme variability can be studied most effectively within a three-poled frame of reference". These three poles (or worlds in which the essay may exist) are: * The personal and the autobiographical: The essayists that feel most comfortable in this pole "write fragments of reflective autobiography and look at the world through the keyhole of anecdote and description". * The objective, the factual, and the concrete particular: The essayists that write from this pole "do not speak directly of themselves, but turn their attention outward to some literary or scientific or political theme. Their art consists of setting forth, passing judgment upon, and drawing general conclusions from the relevant data". * The abstract-universal: In this pole "we find those essayists who do their work in the world of high abstractions", who are never personal and who seldom mention the particular facts of experience. Huxley adds that the most satisfying essays "...make the best not of one, not of two, but of all the three worlds in which it is possible for the essay to exist."


History


Montaigne

Montaigne's "attempts" grew out of his
commonplacing Commonplace books (or commonplaces) are a way to compile knowledge Knowledge is a familiarity or awareness, of someone or something, such as facts A fact is something that is truth, true. The usual test for a statement of fact is veri ...
. Inspired in particular by the works of
Plutarch Plutarch (; grc-gre, Πλούταρχος, ''Ploútarchos''; ; AD 46 – after AD 119) was a Greek Middle Platonist Middle Platonism is the modern name given to a stage in the development of Platonic philosophy, lasting from about 90 BC&nbs ...

Plutarch
, a translation of whose ''Œuvres Morales'' (''Moral works'') into French had just been published by
Jacques Amyot Jacques Amyot (; 30 October 15136 February 1593), French Renaissance The French Renaissance was the cultural Culture () is an umbrella term which encompasses the social behavior Social behavior is behavior among two or more organism ...

Jacques Amyot
, Montaigne began to compose his essays in 1572; the first edition, entitled ''
Essais The ''Essays'' (french: Essais, ) of Michel de Montaigne are contained in three books and 107 chapters of varying length. They were originally written in Middle French and were originally published in the Kingdom of France. Montaigne's stated desi ...

Essais
'', was published in two volumes in 1580. For the rest of his life, he continued revising previously published essays and composing new ones. A third volume was published posthumously; together, their over 100 examples are widely regarded as the predecessor of the modern essay.


Europe

While Montaigne's philosophy was admired and copied in France, none of his most immediate disciples tried to write essays. But Montaigne, who liked to fancy that his family (the Eyquem line) was of English extraction, had spoken of the English people as his "cousins", and he was early read in England, notably by
Francis Bacon Francis Bacon, 1st Viscount St Alban, (; 22 January 1561 – 9 April 1626), also known as Lord Verulam, was an English philosopher and statesman who served as Attorney General for England and Wales, Attorney General and as Lord Chancellor of K ...

Francis Bacon
. Bacon's
essays An essay is, generally, a piece of writing that gives the author's own argument In logic Logic is an interdisciplinary field which studies truth and reasoning Reason is the capacity of consciously making sense of things, applying l ...
, published in book form in 1597 (only five years after the death of Montaigne, containing the first ten of his essays), 1612, and 1625, were the first works in English that described themselves as ''essays''.
Ben Jonson Benjamin Jonson (c. 11 June 1572 – c. 16 August 1637) was an English playwright and poet. Jonson's artistry exerted a lasting influence upon English poetry and stage comedy. He popularised the comedy of humours The comedy of humours is a ge ...
first used the word ''essayist'' in 1609, according to the ''
Oxford English Dictionary The ''Oxford English Dictionary'' (''OED'') is the principal historical dictionary A historical dictionary or dictionary on historical principles is a dictionary which deals not only with the latterday meanings of words but also the historica ...
''. Other English essayists included Sir William Cornwallis, who published essays in 1600 and 1617 that were popular at the time,
Robert Burton Robert Burton (8 February 1577 – 25 January 1640) was an English writer and fellow of Oxford University, best known for his encyclopedic book ''The Anatomy of Melancholy''. Born in 1577 to a comfortably well-off family of the landed gentry, ...
(1577–1641) and
Sir Thomas Browne Sir Thomas Browne (; 19 October 1605 – 19 October 1682) was an English polymath A polymath ( el, πολυμαθής, ', "having learned much"; Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Itali ...
(1605–1682). In Italy,
Baldassare Castiglione Baldassare Castiglione (; December 6, 1478 – February 2, 1529),Dates of birth and death, and cause of the latter, fro, ''Italica'', Rai International online. count of Casatico, was an Italy, Italian courtier, diplomat, soldier and a prominent Ren ...
wrote about courtly manners in his essay ''Il Cortigiano''. In the 17th century, the Spanish
Jesuit , image = Ihs-logo.svg , caption = Christogram A Christogram (Latin ') is a monogram or combination of letters that forms an abbreviation for the name of Jesus Christ, traditionally used as a Christian symbolism ...
Baltasar Gracián Baltasar Gracián y Morales, S.J. (; 8 January 16016 December 1658), better known as Baltasar Gracián, was a Spanish Jesuit The Society of Jesus (SJ; la, Societas Iesu) is a religious order of the Catholic Church The Catholic C ...
wrote about the theme of wisdom.Essay (literature) – Britannica Online Encyclopedia
. Britannica.com. Retrieved March 22, 2011.
In England, during the
Age of Enlightenment The Age of Enlightenment (also known as the Age of Reason or simply the Enlightenment); ger, Aufklärung, "Enlightenment"; it, L'Illuminismo, "Enlightenment"; pl, Oświecenie , "Enlightenment"; pt, Iluminismo, "Enlightenment"; es, link= ...
, essays were a favored tool of polemicists who aimed at convincing readers of their position; they also featured heavily in the rise of
periodical literature Periodical literature (also called a periodical publication or simply a periodical) is a category of serial Serial may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media The presentation of works in sequential segments * Serial (literature), serialised ...
, as seen in the works of
Joseph Addison Joseph Addison (1 May 1672 – 17 June 1719) was an English essayist, poet, playwright and politician. He was the eldest son of The Reverend Lancelot Addison. His name is usually remembered alongside that of his long-standing friend Richard S ...

Joseph Addison
,
Richard Steele Sir Richard Steele (bap. 12 March 1672 – 1 September 1729) was an Irish Irish most commonly refers to: * Someone or something of, from, or related to: ** Ireland, an island situated off the north-western coast of continental Europe ** North ...
and
Samuel Johnson Samuel Johnson (18 September 1709  – 13 December 1784), often called Dr Johnson, was an English writer who made lasting contributions as a poet, playwright, essayist, moralist, critic A critic is a person who communicates an asse ...
. Addison and Steele used the journal ''
Tatler ''Tatler'' is a British magazine A magazine is a periodical publication Periodical literature (also called a periodical publication or simply a periodical) is a category of serial Serial may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Th ...
'' (founded in 1709 by Steele) and its successors as storehouses of their work, and they became the most celebrated eighteenth-century essayists in England. Johnson's essays appear during the 1750s in various similar publications. As a result of the focus on journals, the term also acquired a meaning synonymous with "
article Article often refers to: * Article (grammar) An article is any member of a class of dedicated words that are used with noun phrases to mark the identifiability of the referents of the noun phrases. The category of articles constitutes a part ...
", although the content may not the strict definition. On the other hand, Locke's ''An Essay Concerning Human Understanding'' is not an essay at all, or cluster of essays, in the technical sense, but still it refers to the experimental and tentative nature of the inquiry which the philosopher was undertaking. In the 18th and 19th centuries,
Edmund Burke Edmund Burke (; 12 January NS.html"_;"title="New_Style.html"_;"title="/nowiki>New_Style">NS">New_Style.html"_;"title="/nowiki>New_Style">NS/nowiki>_1729_–_9_July_1797)_was_an_Anglo-Irish_Politician.html" "title="New_Style">NS.html" ;"title ...
and
Samuel Taylor Coleridge Samuel Taylor Coleridge (; 21 October 177225 July 1834) was an , , and who, with his friend , was a founder of the in England and a member of the . He also shared volumes and collaborated with , , and . He wrote the poems ' and ', as well ...

Samuel Taylor Coleridge
wrote essays for the general public. The early 19th century, in particular, saw a proliferation of great essayists in English—
William Hazlitt William Hazlitt (10 April 177818 September 1830) was an English essayist, drama and literary critic Literary criticism (or literary studies) is the study, evaluation Evaluation is a system A system is a group of Interaction, inte ...
,
Charles Lamb Charles Lamb (10 February 1775 – 27 December 1834) was an English essayist, poet, and antiquarian 's cabinet of curiosities, from ''Museum Wormianum,'' 1655 An antiquarian or antiquary (from the Latin: ''antiquarius'', meaning pertaining to ...

Charles Lamb
,
Leigh Hunt James Henry Leigh Hunt (19 October 178428 August 1859), best known as Leigh Hunt, was an English critic, essayist and poet. Hunt co-founded ''The Examiner (1808–86), The Examiner'', a leading intellectual journal expounding radical prin ...
and
Thomas de Quincey Thomas Penson De Quincey (; 15 August 17858 December 1859) was an English writer, essayist, and literary critic, best known for his ''Confessions of an English Opium-Eater ''Confessions of an English Opium-Eater'' ( 1821) is an autobiographi ...
all penned numerous essays on diverse subjects, reviving the earlier graceful style. Later in the century,
Robert Louis Stevenson Robert Louis Stevenson (born Robert Lewis Balfour Stevenson; 13 November 1850 – 3 December 1894) was a Scottish novelist, essayist, poet and travel writer. He is best known for works such as ''Treasure Island ''Treasure Island'' (origi ...

Robert Louis Stevenson
also raised the form's literary level. In the 20th century, a number of essayists, such as
T.S. Eliot Thomas Stearns Eliot (26 September 18884 January 1965) was a , , , , and .Bush, Ronald. "T. S. Eliot's Life and Career", in John A Garraty and Mark C. Carnes (eds), ''American National Biography''. New York: Oxford University Press, 1999, vi/ ...
, tried to explain the new movements in art and culture by using essays.
Virginia Woolf Adeline Virginia Woolf (; ; 25 January 1882 28 March 1941) was an English writer, considered one of the most important modernist Modernism is both a philosophical movement A philosophical movement refers to the phenomenon defined by a ...

Virginia Woolf
,
Edmund Wilson Edmund Wilson Jr. (May 8, 1895 – June 12, 1972) was an American writer and literary critic who explored Freudian Sigmund Freud ( , ; born Sigismund Schlomo Freud; 6 May 1856 – 23 September 1939) was an Austrian neurologist Neurology ...

Edmund Wilson
, and
Charles du Bos Charles Du Bos (27 October 1882 – 5 August 1939) was a French essay An essay is, generally, a piece of writing that gives the author's own argument, but the definition is vague, overlapping with those of a Letter (message), letter, a term pa ...
wrote literary criticism essays. In France, several writers produced longer works with the title of that were not true examples of the form. However, by the mid-19th century, the ''Causeries du lundi'', newspaper columns by the critic
Sainte-Beuve Charles Augustin Sainte-Beuve (; 23 December 1804 – 13 October 1869) was a French literature, French literary critic. Personal and public life Early years He was born in Boulogne-sur-Mer, Boulogne, educated there, and studied medicine at ...

Sainte-Beuve
, are literary essays in the original sense. Other French writers followed suit, including
Théophile Gautier Pierre Jules Théophile Gautier ( , ; 30 August 1811 – 23 October 1872) was a French poet List of poets French poetry, who have written in the French language: A * Louise-Victorine Ackermann (1813–1890) * Adam de la Halle (v.1250 – v.12 ...

Théophile Gautier
,
Anatole France (; born , ; 16 April 1844 – 12 October 1924) was a French poet, journalist, and novelist with several best-sellers. Ironic and skeptical, he was considered in his day the ideal French man of letters. He was a member of the Académie franç ...

Anatole France
, Jules Lemaître and Émile Faguet.


Japan

As with the
novel A novel is a relatively long work of narrative A narrative, story or tale is any account of a series of related events or experiences, whether nonfiction Nonfiction (also spelled non-fiction) is any document A document is a written ...

novel
, essays existed in Japan several centuries before they developed in Europe with a genre of essays known as ''zuihitsu''—loosely connected essays and fragmented ideas. Zuihitsu have existed since almost the beginnings of Japanese literature. Many of the most noted early works of Japanese literature are in this genre. Notable examples include ''
The Pillow Book is a book of observations and musings recorded by Sei Shōnagon was a Japanese author, poet, and a court lady who served the Empress Teishi (Sadako) around the year 1000 during the middle Heian period The is the last division of classic ...
'' (c. 1000), by court lady
Sei Shōnagon was a Japanese author, poet, and a court lady who served the Empress Teishi (Sadako) around the year 1000 during the middle Heian period The is the last division of classical History of Japan, Japanese history, running from 794 to 1185. It ...
, and ''
Tsurezuregusa is a collection of essays written by the Japanese monk Yoshida Kenkō between 1330 and 1332. The work is widely considered a gem of medieval Japanese literature and one of the three representative works of the zuihitsu is a genre of Japanese ...
'' (1330), by particularly renowned Japanese Buddhist monk Yoshida Kenkō. Kenkō described his short writings similarly to Montaigne, referring to them as "nonsensical thoughts" written in "idle hours". Another noteworthy difference from Europe is that women have traditionally written in Japan, though the more formal, Chinese-influenced writings of male writers were more prized at the time.


China

The
eight-legged essay The eight-legged essay () was a style of essay An essay is, generally, a piece of writing that gives the author's own argument In logic Logic is an interdisciplinary field which studies truth and reasoning Reason is the capacity ...
(
Chinese Chinese can refer to: * Something related to China China (), officially the People's Republic of China (PRC; ), is a country in . It is the world's , with a of more than 1.4 billion. China spans five geographical and 14 different count ...
: 八股文;
pinyin ''Hanyu Pinyin'' (), often abbreviated to pinyin, is the official romanization Romanization or romanisation, in linguistics Linguistics is the scientific study of language, meaning that it is a comprehensive, systematic, objecti ...

pinyin
: ''bāgǔwén''; lit. 'eight bone text') was a style of essay in
imperial examinations The Chinese imperial examinations, or ''keju'' (lit. "subject recommendation"), was a civil service examination Civil service examinations (also public tendering) are examinations implemented in various countries for recruitment and admissi ...
during the
Ming The Ming dynasty (), officially the Great Ming, was the ruling dynasty of China from 1368 to 1644 following the collapse of the Mongol The Mongols ( mn, Монголчууд, , ''Mongolchuud'', ; russian: Монголы, ) are an eth ...

Ming
and
Qing The Qing dynasty, officially the Great Qing (), was the last dynasty A dynasty (, ) is a sequence of rulers from the same family,''Oxford English Dictionary'', "dynasty, ''n''." Oxford University Press Oxford University Pr ...
dynasties in China. The eight-legged essay was needed for those test takers in these civil service tests to show their merits for government service, often focusing on
Confucian Confucianism, also known as Ruism, is a system of thought and behavior originating in ancient China The earliest known written records of the history of China date from as early as 1250 BC, from the Shang dynasty (c. 1600–1046 BC ...

Confucian
thought and knowledge of the
Four Books and Five Classics The Four Books and Five Classics () are the authoritative books of Confucianism Confucianism, also known as Ruism, is a system of thought and behavior originating in ancient China The earliest known written records of the histo ...
, in relation to governmental ideals. Test takers could not write in innovative or creative ways, but needed to conform to the standards of the eight-legged essay. Various skills were examined, including the ability to write coherently and to display basic logic. In certain times, the candidates were expected to spontaneously compose poetry upon a set theme, whose value was also sometimes questioned, or eliminated as part of the test material. This was a major argument in favor of the eight-legged essay, arguing that it were better to eliminate creative art in favor of prosaic literacy. In the history of Chinese literature, the eight-legged essay is often said to have caused China's "cultural stagnation and economic backwardness" in the 19th century.


Forms and styles

This section describes the different forms and styles of essay writing. These are used by an array of authors, including university students and professional essayists.


Cause and effect

The defining features of a "cause and effect" essay are causal chains that connect from a cause to an effect, careful language, and chronological or emphatic order. A writer using this rhetorical method must consider the
subject Subject ( la, subiectus "lying beneath") may refer to: Philosophy *''Hypokeimenon ''Hypokeimenon'' (Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the He ...
, determine the
purpose Intentions are mental states in which the agent commits themselves to a course of action. Having the plan to visit the zoo tomorrow is an example of an intention. The action plan is the ''content'' of the intention while the commitment is the ''at ...
, consider the
audience An audience is a group of people who participate in a show or encounter a work of art A work of art, artwork, art piece, piece of art or art object is an artistic creation of aesthetic Aesthetics, or esthetics (), is a branch of philoso ...

audience
, think critically about different causes or consequences, consider a thesis statement, arrange the parts, consider the
language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the ...

language
, and decide on a conclusion.


Classification and division

Classification is the categorization of objects into a larger whole while division is the breaking of a larger whole into smaller parts.


Compare and contrast

Compare and contrast essays are characterized by a basis for comparison, points of comparison, and analogies. It is grouped by the object (chunking) or by point (sequential). The comparison highlights the similarities between two or more similar objects while contrasting highlights the differences between two or more objects. When writing a compare/contrast essay, writers need to determine their purpose, consider their audience, consider the basis and points of comparison, consider their thesis statement, arrange and develop the comparison, and reach a conclusion. Compare and contrast is arranged emphatically.


Expository

An expository essay is used to inform, describe or explain a topic, using important facts to teach the reader about a topic. Mostly written in third-person, using "it", "he", "she", "they," the expository essay uses formal language to discuss someone or something. Examples of expository essays are: a medical or biological condition, social or technological process, life or character of a famous person. The writing of an expository essay often consists of the following steps: organizing thoughts (
brainstorming Brainstorming is a group creativity technique by which efforts are made to find a conclusion for a specific problem by gathering a list of ideas spontaneously contributed by its members. In other words, brainstorming is a situation where a grou ...

brainstorming
), researching a topic, developing a
thesis statement A thesis statement usually appears at the conclusion of the introductory paragraph A paragraph () is a self-contained unit of discourse in writing Writing is a medium of human communication Communication (from Latin ''communicare'', ...
, writing the introduction, writing the body of essay, and writing the conclusion. Expository essays are often assigned as a part of SAT and other standardized testing or as homework for high school and college students.


Descriptive

Descriptive writing is characterized by sensory details, which appeal to the physical senses, and details that appeal to a reader's emotional, physical, or intellectual sensibilities. Determining the purpose, considering the audience, creating a dominant impression, using descriptive language, and organizing the description are the rhetorical choices to consider when using a description. A description is usually arranged spatially but can also be
chronological Chronology (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through the power of th ...
or emphatic. The focus of a description is the scene. Description uses tools such as denotative language, connotative language,
figurative language Literal and figurative language is a distinction within some fields of language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, ...
,
metaphor A metaphor is a figure of speech A figure of speech or rhetorical figure is a word or phrase that entails an intentional deviation from ordinary language use in order to produce a rhetoric Rhetoric () is the Art (skill), art of ...
, and
simile A simile () is a figure of speech A figure of speech or rhetorical figure is a word or phrase that entails an intentional deviation from ordinary language use in order to produce a rhetoric Rhetoric () is the Art (skill), art of pe ...
to arrive at a dominant impression. One university essay guide states that "descriptive writing says what happened or what another author has discussed; it provides an account of the topic". Lyric essays are an important form of descriptive essays.


Dialectic

In the
dialectic Dialectic or dialectics ( grc-gre, διαλεκτική, ''dialektikḗ''; related to dialogue Dialogue (sometimes spelled dialog in American English American English (AmE, AE, AmEng, USEng, en-US), sometimes called United States Engli ...
form of the essay, which is commonly used in
philosophy Philosophy (from , ) is the study of general and fundamental questions, such as those about Metaphysics, existence, reason, Epistemology, knowledge, Ethics, values, Philosophy of mind, mind, and Philosophy of language, language. Such questio ...

philosophy
, the writer makes a thesis and argument, then objects to their own argument (with a counterargument), but then counters the counterargument with a final and novel argument. This form benefits from presenting a broader perspective while countering a possible flaw that some may present. This type is sometimes called an ethics paper.


Exemplification

An exemplification essay is characterized by a generalization and relevant, representative, and believable examples including
anecdote An ''anecdote'' is a brief, revealing account of an individual person or an incident: "a story with a point," such as to communicate an abstract idea about a person, place, or thing through the concrete details of a short narrative or to characte ...

anecdote
s. Writers need to consider their subject, determine their purpose, consider their audience, decide on specific examples, and arrange all the parts together when writing an exemplification essay.


Familiar

An essayist writes a ''familiar essay'' if speaking to a single reader, writing about both themselves, and about particular subjects.
Anne Fadiman Anne Fadiman (born August 7, 1953 in New York City) is an United States, American essayist and reporter. Her interests include literary journalism, essays, memoir, and autobiography. She has received the National Book Critics Circle Award, the Lo ...
notes that "the genre's heyday was the early nineteenth century," and that its greatest exponent was
Charles Lamb Charles Lamb (10 February 1775 – 27 December 1834) was an English essayist, poet, and antiquarian 's cabinet of curiosities, from ''Museum Wormianum,'' 1655 An antiquarian or antiquary (from the Latin: ''antiquarius'', meaning pertaining to ...

Charles Lamb
. She also suggests that while critical essays have more brain than the heart, and personal essays have more heart than brain, familiar essays have equal measures of both.


History (thesis)

A history essay sometimes referred to as a thesis essay describes an argument or claim about one or more historical events and supports that claim with evidence, arguments, and references. The text makes it clear to the reader why the argument or claim is as such.


Narrative

A
narrative A narrative, story or tale is any account of a series of related events or experiences, whether nonfiction Nonfiction (also spelled non-fiction) is any document A document is a written Writing is a medium of human communication Comm ...

narrative
uses tools such as flashbacks, flash-forwards, and transitions that often build to a climax. The focus of a narrative is the
plot Plot or Plotting may refer to: Art, media and entertainment * Plot (narrative), the story of a piece of fiction Music * The Plot (album), ''The Plot'' (album), a 1976 album by jazz trumpeter Enrico Rava * The Plot (band), a band formed in 2003 ...
. When creating a narrative, authors must determine their purpose, consider their audience, establish their point of view, use dialogue, and organize the narrative. A narrative is usually arranged chronologically.


Argumentative

An
argumentative In the American legal system, argumentative is an evidentiary Evidence, broadly construed, is anything presented in support of an Logical assertion, assertion, because evident things are undoubted. There are two kind of evidence: intellectual ev ...
essay is a
critical Critical or Critically may refer to: *Critical, or critical but stable, medical state Medical state is a term used to describe a hospital A hospital is a health care institution providing patient treatment with specialized medical and nursing s ...
piece of writing, aimed at presenting objective
analysis Analysis is the process of breaking a complex topic or substance Substance may refer to: * Substance (Jainism), a term in Jain ontology to denote the base or owner of attributes * Chemical substance, a material with a definite chemical composit ...

analysis
of the subject matter, narrowed down to a single topic. The main idea of all the criticism is to provide an opinion either of positive or negative implication. As such, a critical essay requires research and analysis, strong internal logic and sharp structure. Its structure normally builds around introduction with a topic's relevance and a
thesis statement A thesis statement usually appears at the conclusion of the introductory paragraph A paragraph () is a self-contained unit of discourse in writing Writing is a medium of human communication Communication (from Latin ''communicare'', ...
, body paragraphs with arguments linking back to the main thesis, and conclusion. In addition, an argumentative essay may include a refutation section where conflicting ideas are acknowledged, described, and criticized. Each
argument In logic Logic is an interdisciplinary field which studies truth and reasoning Reason is the capacity of consciously making sense of things, applying logic Logic (from Ancient Greek, Greek: grc, wikt:λογική, λογική, la ...
of an argumentative essay should be supported with sufficient evidence, relevant to the point.


Process

A process essay is used for an explanation of making or breaking something. Often, it is written in chronological order or numerical order to show step-by-step processes. It has all the qualities of a technical document with the only difference is that it is often written in descriptive mood, while a technical document is mostly in
imperative mood The imperative mood is a grammatical mood In linguistics Linguistics is the scientific study of language A language is a structured system of communication used by humans, including speech (spoken language), gestures (Signed lang ...
.


Economic

An
economic An economy (; ) is an area of the production Production may be: Economics and business * Production (economics) * Production, the act of manufacturing goods * Production, in the outline of industrial organization, the act of making products ...

economic
essay can start with a thesis, or it can start with a theme. It can take a narrative course and a descriptive course. It can even become an
argumentative In the American legal system, argumentative is an evidentiary Evidence, broadly construed, is anything presented in support of an Logical assertion, assertion, because evident things are undoubted. There are two kind of evidence: intellectual ev ...
essay if the author feels the need. After the introduction, the author has to do his/her best to expose the economic matter at hand, to analyze it, evaluate it, and draw a conclusion. If the essay takes more of a narrative form then the author has to expose each aspect of the economic puzzle in a way that makes it clear and understandable for the reader


Reflective

A ''reflective essay'' is an piece of writing in which the writer describes a real or imaginary scene, event, interaction, passing thought, memory, or form—adding a personal reflection on the meaning of the topic in the author's life. Thus, the focus is not merely descriptive. The writer doesn't just describe the situation, but revisits the scene with more detail and emotion to examine what went well, or reveal a need for additional learning—and may relate what transpired to the rest of the author's life.


Other logical structures

The logical progression and organizational structure of an essay can take many forms. Understanding how the movement of thought is managed through an essay has a profound impact on its overall cogency and ability to impress. A number of alternative logical structures for essays have been visualized as diagrams, making them easy to implement or adapt in the construction of an argument.


Academic

In countries like the
United States The United States of America (U.S.A. or USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US) or America, is a country Continental United States, primarily located in North America. It consists of 50 U.S. state, states, a Washington, D.C., ...

United States
and the
United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain,Usage is mixed. The Guardian' and Telegraph' use Britain as a synonym for the United Kingdom. Some prefer to use Britain as shorth ...

United Kingdom
, essays have become a major part of a formal
education Education is the process of facilitating learning, or the acquisition of knowledge, skills, value (ethics), values, morals, beliefs, habits, and personal development. Educational methods include teaching, training, storytelling, discussion ...

education
in the form of
free response Free response, usually referred to as essay An essay is, generally, a piece of writing that gives the author's own argument In logic Logic is an interdisciplinary field which studies truth and reasoning Reason is the capacity of c ...
questions. Secondary students in these countries are taught structured essay formats to improve their writing skills, and essays are often used by universities in these countries in selecting applicants (''see''
admissions essay An admissions or application essay, sometimes also called a personal statement or a statement of purpose, is an essay An essay is, generally, a piece of writing that gives the author's own argument, but the definition is vague, overlapping wi ...
). In both secondary and tertiary education, essays are used to judge the mastery and comprehension of the material. Students are asked to explain, comment on, or assess a topic of study in the form of an essay. In some courses, university students must complete one or more essays over several weeks or months. In addition, in fields such as the humanities and social sciences, mid-term and end of term examinations often require students to write a short essay in two or three hours. In these countries, so-called academic essays, also called ''papers'', are usually more formal than literary ones. They may still allow the presentation of the writer's own views, but this is done in a logical and factual manner, with the use of the first person often discouraged. Longer academic essays (often with a word limit of between 2,000 and 5,000 words) are often more discursive. They sometimes begin with a short summary analysis of what has previously been written on a topic, which is often called a
literature review A literature review is an overview of the previously published works on a specific topic. The term can refer to a full scholarly paper or a section of a scholarly work such as a book, or an article. Either way, a literature review is supposed ...
. Longer essays may also contain an introductory page that defines words and phrases of the essay's topic. Most academic institutions require that all substantial facts, quotations, and other supporting material in an essay be referenced in a
bibliography Bibliography (from and ), as a discipline, is traditionally the academic study of book A book is a medium for recording information Information is processed, organised and structured data Data (; ) are individual facts, stati ...
or works cited page at the end of the text. This scholarly convention helps others (whether teachers or fellow scholars) to understand the basis of facts and quotations the author uses to support the essay's argument. The bibliography also helps readers evaluate to what extent the argument is supported by evidence and to evaluate the quality of that evidence. The academic essay tests the student's ability to present their thoughts in an organized way and is designed to test their intellectual capabilities. One of the challenges facing universities is that in some cases, students may submit essays purchased from an
essay mill An essay mill (also term paper mill) is a business that allows customers to commission an original piece of writing on a particular topic so that they may commit academic fraud. Customers provide the company with specific information about the ess ...
(or "paper mill") as their own work. An "essay mill" is a
ghostwriting A ghostwriter is hired to write literature, literary or journalism, journalistic works, Public speaking, speeches, or other texts that are officially credited to another person as the author. Celebrities, executives, participants in timely new ...
service that sells pre-written essays to university and college students. Since
plagiarism Plagiarism is the representation of another author An author is the creator or originator of any written work such as a book A book is a medium for recording information Information is processed, organised and structured data ...

plagiarism
is a form of
academic dishonesty Academic dishonesty, academic misconduct, academic fraud and academic integrity Academic integrity is the moral code Morality (from ) is the differentiation of intention Intention is a mind, mental state that represents a commitment to carr ...

academic dishonesty
or
academic fraud An academy (Attic Greek: Ἀκαδήμεια; Koine Greek Ἀκαδημία) is an institution of secondary education, secondary or tertiary education, tertiary higher education, higher learning, research, or honorary membership. Academia is the ...
, universities and colleges may investigate papers they suspect are from an essay mill by using
plagiarism detection Plagiarism detection or content similarity detection is the process of locating instances of plagiarism or copyright infringement within a work or document. The widespread use of computers and the advent of the Internet have made it easier to pla ...
software, which compares essays against a database of known mill essays and by orally testing students on the contents of their papers.


Magazine or newspaper

Essays often appear in magazines, especially magazines with an intellectual bent, such as ''
The Atlantic ''The Atlantic'' is an American magazine and multi-platform publisher. It was founded in 1857 in Boston, as ''The Atlantic Monthly'', a literary and cultural magazine that published leading writers' commentary on education, the abolition of sl ...

The Atlantic
'' and '' Harpers''. Magazine and newspaper essays use many of the essay types described in the section on forms and styles (e.g., descriptive essays, narrative essays, etc.). Some newspapers also print essays in the
op-ed An op-ed, short for "opposite the editorial page" or as a backronym A backronym, or bacronym, is an acronym formed from a word that existed prior to the invention of the backronym. Unlike a typical acronym, in which a new word is constructed fro ...
section.


Employment

Employment essays detailing experience in a certain occupational field are required when applying for some jobs, especially government jobs in the United States. Essays known as Knowledge Skills and Executive Core Qualifications are required when applying to certain US federal government positions. A KSA, or "Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities," is a series of narrative statements that are required when applying to Federal government job openings in the United States. KSAs are used along with resumes to determine who the best applicants are when several candidates qualify for a job. The knowledge, skills, and abilities necessary for the successful performance of a position are contained on each job vacancy announcement. KSAs are brief and focused essays about one's career and educational background that presumably qualify one to perform the duties of the position being applied for. An Executive Core Qualification, or ECQ, is a narrative statement that is required when applying to Senior Executive Service positions within the US Federal government. Like the KSAs, ECQs are used along with resumes to determine who the best applicants are when several candidates qualify for a job. The Office of Personnel Management has established five executive core qualifications that all applicants seeking to enter the Senior Executive Service must demonstrate.


Non-literary types


Film

A film essay (or "cinematic essay") consists of the evolution of a theme or an idea rather than a plot per se, or the film literally being a cinematic accompaniment to a narrator reading an essay. From another perspective, an essay film could be defined as a
documentary film A documentary film or documentary is a non-fictional film, motion-picture intended to "document reality, primarily for the purposes of instruction, education, or maintaining a Recorded history, historical record". Bill Nichols (film critic), Bi ...
visual basis combined with a form of commentary that contains elements of self-portrait (rather than autobiography), where the signature (rather than the life story) of the filmmaker is apparent. The cinematic essay often blends documentary,
fiction Fiction is any creative work A creative work is a manifestation of creativity, creative effort including Work of art, fine artwork (sculpture, paintings, drawing, Sketch (drawing), sketching, performance art), dance, writing (literature), filmm ...

fiction
, and experimental film making using tones and editing styles.Cinematic Essay Film Genre
. chicagomediaworks.com. Retrieved March 22, 2011.
The genre is not well-defined but might include propaganda works of early
Soviet The Soviet Union,. officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. (USSR),. was a socialist state A socialist state, socialist republic, or socialist country, sometimes referred to as a workers' state or workers' republic, is a sove ...
filmmakers like
Dziga Vertov Dziga Vertov (russian: Дзига Вертов, born David Abelevich Kaufman, russian: Дави́д А́белевич Ка́уфман, and also known as Denis Kaufman; – 12 February 1954) was a Soviet The Soviet Union,. officiall ...
, present-day filmmakers including
Chris Marker Chris Marker (; 29 July 1921 – 29 July 2012) was a French writer, photographer, documentary film director, multimedia artist and Essay#Film, film essayist. His best known films are ''La Jetée'' (1962), ''A Grin Without a Cat'' (1977) and ''S ...
,
Michael Moore Michael Francis Moore (born April 23, 1954) is an American documentary filmmaker, author, and left-wing activist. His works frequently address the topics of globalization Globalization, or globalisation (Commonwealth English Th ...

Michael Moore
(''
Roger & Me ''Roger & Me'' is a 1989 American documentary film written, produced, directed by and starring Michael Moore, in his directorial debut. Moore portrays the regional economic impact of General Motors Corporation, General Motors Chief executive off ...
'', ''
Bowling for Columbine ''Bowling for Columbine'' is a 2002 American documentary film A documentary film or documentary is a non-fictional film, motion-picture intended to "document reality, primarily for the purposes of instruction, education, or maintaining a Reco ...
'' and ''
Fahrenheit 9/11 ''Fahrenheit 9/11'' is a 2004 American documentary film A documentary film or documentary is a non-fictional film, motion-picture intended to "document reality, primarily for the purposes of instruction, education, or maintaining a Recorded ...
''),
Errol Morris Errol Mark Morris (born February 5, 1948) is an American film director A film director controls a 's artistic and dramatic aspects and visualizes the (or script) while guiding the and s in the fulfilment of that . The director has a key r ...
(''
The Thin Blue Line Image:Thin Blue Line flag.svg, 325px, The blue line symbol The "thin blue line" is a term that typically refers to the concept of the police as the line which keeps society from descending into violent chaos. The "blue" in "thin blue line" refers ...
''),
Morgan Spurlock Morgan Valentine Spurlock (born November 7, 1970) is an American documentary filmmaker, List of humorists, humorist, television producer, screenwriter and playwright. Spurlock's films include ''Super Size Me'' (2004), ''Where in the World Is Osam ...
('' Supersize Me'') and
Agnès Varda Agnès Varda (; born Arlette Varda, 30 May 1928 – 29 March 2019) was a Belgian-born French film director, screenwriter, photographer, and artist. Her pioneering work was central to the development of the widely influential French New Wave ...
.
Jean-Luc Godard Jean-Luc Godard ( , ; ; born 3 December 1930) is a French-Swiss film director, screenwriter, and film critic. He rose to prominence as a pioneer of the 1960s French New Wave The New Wave (french: La Nouvelle Vague) is a French art film ...

Jean-Luc Godard
describes his recent work as "film-essays". Two filmmakers whose work was the antecedent to the cinematic essay include
Georges Méliès Marie-Georges-Jean Méliès (; ; 8 December 1861 – 21 January 1938) was a French illusionist Magic, which encompasses the subgenres of illusion, stage magic, and close up magic, among others, is a performing art in which audiences are ...

Georges Méliès
and
Bertolt Brecht Eugen Berthold Friedrich Brecht (10 February 1898 – 14 August 1956), known professionally as Bertolt Brecht, was a German theatre practitioner A theatre practitioner is someone who creates theatrical performances and/or produces a theoretica ...

Bertolt Brecht
. Méliès made a short film ('' The Coronation of Edward VII'' (1902)) about the 1902 coronation of King
Edward VII Edward VII (Albert Edward; 9 November 1841 – 6 May 1910) was King of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland There have been 12 British monarchs since the political union of the Kingdom of England The Kingdom of Engla ...

Edward VII
, which mixes actual footage with shots of a recreation of the event. Brecht was a playwright who experimented with film and incorporated film projections into some of his plays.
Orson Welles George Orson Welles (May 6, 1915 – October 10, 1985) was an American director, actor, screenwriter, and producer who is remembered for his innovative work in radio, theatre and film. He is considered to be among the greatest and most in ...

Orson Welles
made an essay film in his own pioneering style, released in 1974, called ''
F for Fake ''F for Fake'' (french: link=no, Vérités et mensonges, "Truths and lies") is a 1973 docudrama A docudrama (or documentary drama) is a genre Genre () is any form or type of communication in any mode (written, spoken, digital, artistic, et ...
'', which dealt specifically with art forger
Elmyr de Hory Elmyr de Hory (born Elemér Albert Hoffmann; April 14, 1906 – December 11, 1976) was a Hungarian-born painter and art forger, who is said to have sold over a thousand art forgeries to reputable art galleries all over the world. His forgeries g ...
and with the themes of deception, "fakery," and authenticity in general. These are often published online on
video hosting service An online video platform (OVP), provided by a video hosting service, enables users to upload, convert, store and play back video content on the Internet The Internet (or internet) is the global system of interconnected computer networ ...
s. David Winks Gray's article "The essay film in action" states that the "essay film became an identifiable form of filmmaking in the 1950s and '60s". He states that since that time, essay films have tended to be "on the margins" of the filmmaking the world. Essay films have a "peculiar searching, questioning tone ... between documentary and fiction" but without "fitting comfortably" into either genre. Gray notes that just like written essays, essay films "tend to marry the personal voice of a guiding narrator (often the director) with a wide swath of other voices". The
University of Wisconsin A university () is an educational institution, institution of higher education, higher (or Tertiary education, tertiary) education and research which awards academic degrees in several Discipline (academia), academic disciplines. Universities typi ...
Cinematheque website echoes some of Gray's comments; it calls a film essay an "intimate and allusive" genre that "catches filmmakers in a pensive mood, ruminating on the margins between fiction and documentary" in a manner that is "refreshingly inventive, playful, and idiosyncratic"."Talking Pictures: The Art of the Essay Film"
Cinema.wisc.edu. Retrieved March 22, 2011.


Music

In the realm of music, composer
Samuel Barber Samuel Osmond Barber II (March 9, 1910 – January 23, 1981) was an American composer, piano, pianist, conductor (music), conductor, baritone, and music educator, and one of the most celebrated composers of the 20th century. The music critic Do ...

Samuel Barber
wrote a set of "Essays for Orchestra," relying on the form and content of the music to guide the listener's ear, rather than any extra-musical plot or story.


Photography

A photographic essay strives to cover a topic with a linked series of
photograph A photograph (also known as a photo) is an image An SAR radar image acquired by the SIR-C/X-SAR radar on board the Space Shuttle Endeavour shows the Teide volcano. The city of Santa Cruz de Tenerife is visible as the purple and white ...
s. Photo essays range from purely photographic works to photographs with captions or small notes to full-text essays with a few or many accompanying photographs. Photo essays can be sequential in nature, intended to be viewed in a particular order—or they may consist of non-ordered photographs viewed all at once or in an order that the viewer chooses. All photo essays are collections of photographs, but not all collections of photographs are photo essays. Photo essays often address a certain issue or attempt to capture the character of places and events.


Visual arts

In the visual
art Art is a diverse range of (products of) human activities Humans (''Homo sapiens'') are the most populous and widespread species of primates, characterized by bipedality, opposable thumbs, hairlessness, and intelligence allowing the use ...

art
s, an essay is a preliminary drawing or sketch that forms a basis for a final painting or sculpture, made as a test of the work's composition (this meaning of the term, like several of those following, comes from the word ''essays meaning of "attempt" or "trial").


See also

*
Abstract (summary) An abstract is a brief summary of a research article, thesis A thesis, or dissertation (abbreviated diss.), is a document submitted in support of candidature for an academic degree An academic degree is a qualification awarded to students ...
* Body (writing) *
Book report A book report is an essay discussing the contents of a book, written as part of a class assignment (education), assignment issued to students in schools, particularly at the elementary school level. There is a difference between a book report and ...
*
Essay thesis A thesis as a collection of articlesWr ...
*
Five paragraph essay The five-paragraph essay is a format of essay An essay is, generally, a piece of writing that gives the author's own argument In logic Logic is an interdisciplinary field which studies truth and reasoning Reason is the capacity of ...
*
Introduction Introduction, The Introduction, Intro, or The Intro may refer to: General use * Introduction (music), an opening section of a piece of music * Introduction (writing), a beginning section to a book, article or essay which states its purpose and g ...
*
List of essayists This is a list of essayists—people notable for their essay An essay is, generally, a piece of writing that gives the author's own argument, but the definition is vague, overlapping with those of a letter, a paper Paper is a thin shee ...
* SAT Essay *
Schaffer paragraph The Jane Schaffer paragraph is a five-sentence paragraph developed by Jane Schaffer, used to write essays. The paragraph only makes up one of many paragraphs in an essay, and are more mechanical in nature including the introduction and conclusion. ...
*
Treatise A treatise is a formal Formal, formality, informal or informality imply the complying with, or not complying with, some set theory, set of requirements (substantial form, forms, in Ancient Greek). They may refer to: Dress code and events * For ...


References


Further reading

* * , "The Essay as Form" in: Theodor W. Adorno, ''The Adorno Reader'', Blackwell Publishers 2000. * Beaujour, Michel. ''Miroirs d'encre: Rhétorique de l'autoportrait''. Paris: Seuil, 1980. oetics of the Literary Self-Portrait. Trans. Yara Milos. New York: NYU Press, 1991 * Bensmaïa, Reda. ''The Barthes Effect: The Essay as Reflective Text''. Trans. Pat Fedkiew. Minneapolis: Univ. of Minnesota Press, 1987. * D'Agata, John (Editor), ''The Lost Origins of the Essay''. St Paul: Graywolf Press, 2009. * Giamatti, Louis. "The Cinematic Essay", in ''Godard and the Others: Essays in Cinematic Form''. London, Tantivy Press, 1975. * Lopate, Phillip. "In Search of the Centaur: The Essay-Film", in ''Beyond Document: Essays on Nonfiction Film''. Edited by Charles Warren, Wesleyan University Press, 1998. pp. 243–270. * Warburton, Nigel. ''The basics of essay writing''. Routledge, 2006.


External links


Essay writing category
on EnglishGrammar.org
Essay eTexts
at
Project Gutenberg Project Gutenberg (PG) is a volunteer Volunteering is a voluntary act of an individual or group freely giving time and labour for community service. Many volunteers are specifically trained in the areas they work, such as medicine, educati ...

What is an Essay?
from Wikidot

Criticism of the modern essay, by Paul Graham {{Authority control School terminology Writing