How to write a critical analysis essay
While writing a critical analysis essay, you are expected to take a subject and make a critical assessment of it. This subject can be a historical event, an artistic work such as a book, movie, song, social problem, or even a political issue.
Any topic that can create conflict or has the potential of triggering different reactions can be the subject of a critical analysis essay.
Step 1: Common mistakes
You first need to improve your argumentation skills. Most college papers require creating and defending your arguments, which is quite common in argumentative essays.
Now that we know what critical analysis is and what to avoid, we can continue with the other steps of the writing process.
Step 2: Choose a subject and research
If your subject is pre-assigned by your teacher or instructor, you can pass this step. If not, there are a few tips you should consider when choosing your topic.
Keeping these tips in mind, choose yourself a subject that you are interested in. For this guide, let’s choose the subject “Kate Chopin’s ‘The Story of an Hour’ as a work of women’s liberation.” (sample essay)
Whether your subject is a book, a movie, or a cultural phenomenon, examining it once is not enough for writing a critical analysis essay.
For example, suppose you are analyzing a book. You need to read scholarly articles in addition to the actual book. While reading, your main aim is to detect the author’s thesis statement. There are three main points to consider when you are reading the text.
The tone and language of the essay (US or UK English) can be a clue for you. For example, if the author uses advanced vocabulary and technical theories, the text is intended for knowledgeable audiences.
By reading into the persuasion methods such as language and rhetoric, you can understand the messages the author intends to give in the text.
By examining the text’s structure, you can recognize the main points the author wants to emphasize.
Pro tipWhile researching, make sure to write down words and concepts that are unfamiliar to you.
Step 4: Build your thesis
After the reading part is done, you can start writing your essay. If possible, give yourself some time to reflect upon your readings to organize your thoughts on the subject.
“Kate Chopin’s 1894 short story ‘The Story of an Hour’ is an excellent example of a women’s liberation story which expresses the oppression women face in a male-dominated society magnificently.”
ImportantIn a critical analysis essay, it is essential that your thesis statement be a strong claim that is open to opposition.
Step 5: Create an outline
As with all essays, once you build your thesis statement, creating an outline will help you organize your thoughts and be coherent in your writing process.
Unless specified otherwise, your essay should follow the traditional essay structure. This means it should have an introduction, supporting paragraphs, and a conclusion.
Step 6: Introduction
The introduction paragraph is one of the most critical parts of your essay because it sets the structure for the rest of your paper. You can see the example introduction and then see a checklist below.
Step 7: The summary paragraphs
To make a critical analysis of a subject, you first need to summarize it effectively. Especially if your subject is a literary work or a movie. Therefore, making a summary of the work in your first supporting paragraph would be a smart choice.
Step 8: The analysis paragraphs
Check your analysis paragraph based on these questions, and then we can finally get to the conclusion.
Step 9: Conclusion
First, see an example of a good conclusion paragraph. Then you can follow the checklist to write one by yourself!
Frequently Asked Questions
Thank you for reading. If you need further information, feel free to have a look at our essay samples or contact us at live chat.
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