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What is an essay

An essay is a unique literary genre. Essentially, this is any quick work-a work he composed in private on a particular question. A key feature of the essay is its author in contrast to the scientific and journalistic styles with a strict specification style. At the same time, the essay stands in rank below the works of art.


Can be summarized in a definition essay is a justification of personal points of view of the person in written form. However, it is worth considering that the product of this literary genre is not intended to be the basis of the issue or exhaustive source of information. This essay contains the author’s conclusions and insights. Therefore, how to write an essay, sample of writing and the requirements are just recommendations or set of rules (applies to past), while the main part should occupy your thoughts.

Historical note

Essay comes from the French “attempt”, “sample”, “sketch”. And originated the genre also in this beautiful country, back in the Renaissance. French writer and philosopher Michel de Montaigne for the first time tried to write “about everything and about nothing, not having preliminary themes and action plan”. He claimed that he likes to soften the boldness of his ideas, adding suggestions moderately questioning speculation “can be” and “probably”. So “probably” has become a formula expression essays in principle. Epstein, in turn, have defined the genre as matriptase, with its original validity and how the image of this reality.

Differences from the novel

Genre of the essay developed in parallel with the genre of the novel. The latter, however, more familiar to Russian literature, especially classical. Essay, in turn, has had an enormous influence on Western literature.

Unlike the novel, essay and monologue is the author’s individuality. It narrows its scope, as a genre, and the picture of the world presented highly subjective way. At the same time, the essay is inevitably interesting in that it reveals the inner world of a particular person, not fictional, and entirely real – with its advantages and disadvantages. The style of such literary works will always contain the imprint of the human soul. The novel reveals the characters and heroes, from the pen of the author, no less interesting, but the virtual, unreal.

Why write an essay?

Students and applicants in preparation for the exams there is often a question about how to write an essay. Piece of writing this kind of work looking for too often, and that is to say, to find it is easy. But why, in principle, to write it? This question also has the answer.

Essay writing develops creative thinking, skills of written presentation of ideas. Person learns to identify causal relationships and to structure information, to formulate what he wished to Express, to explain their point of view, illustrating it by various examples, to summarize the article.

Usually essay devote philosophical, intellectual, and moral-ethical issues. The latter is often used for assignments essays to students – they do not impose strict requirements, citing lack of erudition and informal design work.


Content. These include art and publitsisticheskie, historical and philosophical, spiritual and religious etc.

According to literary form. Among them may be letters or a diary, notes, or reviews, of lyrical miniatures.

Form. Such as: descriptive, narrative, reflective, analytical, compositional and critical.

The descriptions distinguish between subjective and objective. First reflect the personality of the author, the second focuses on the description of the object, phenomenon, process and so on.

Distinctive features

Essay can “identify” on the following grounds:

A small amount of. Usually up to seven pages of printed text, although in different educational institutions may have their own requirements on this occasion. In some universities essay – full-time job of 10 pages, others appreciate the summaries of all of his thoughts on two sheets.

Specifics. Essays are usually answers one specific question, which is often formulated in the subject of the task. Interpretation of the response is subjective and contains the author’s conclusions. Again, depending on the specifications of the works, you may want to consider the problem from all angles, even if half of these opinions in no case may not apply directly to the author.

Free-style composition. Essay differs associative narrative. The logical connection, the author thinks, follow your own thinking. Recall that in essay his inner world.

Paradoxes. Moreover, the phenomenon of paradoxes is the place to be not only in the text, but in the principles of the essay: because this literary genre, though presented in a loose narrative, is bound to have semantic integrity.

The consistency of the abstracts and the author’s claims. Even if the author of a controversial nature, he is obliged to explain why he could not choose one point of view, not to lose the thread of the narrative, breakingit, then starting anew. In the end, even the pages of the diary turned into an essay, are literary norms. After all, the final essay will read not only the author himself.

How to write an essay?

A sample of the work may introduce a beginner into error: one or a couple of examples of little help to the author, who could not understand what actually is required.

First of all, it is worth mentioning that for writing so-called essay, you must be fluent in the topic. If when writing you have to seek information from many sources, the essay ceases to be so. This rule comes from the fact that in his “trial”, the author truly expresses my point of view, though of course it can emphasize its quotations of great people etc. of Course, the data to be reliable, it is necessary to check them. But the essay is not written on the basis of the material, and starting from him, coming to his conclusions and results.

Why having problems writing?

Many students try to find sample essays, due to the fact that schools do not pay enough time for writing such type of work. School essays, though, and referred to the genre, and some teachers formulate tasks, using precisely these terms, still do not have each particular specifications. As mentioned earlier, the school essays don’t even always magnify themselves. In secondary schools children only learn to articulate their thoughts in a literary format. That’s why many people come to pass the Unified State Examination with fear – they will in a short time to Express their point of view, while they do not quite know how.

The structure of the essay

Theme essays are usually submitted in the form of quotes by famous people with whom the writer can agree or disagree, arguing your opinion.

It is therefore recommended to start an essay with “I agree () with this opinion” or “I can not say what I think as well as the author” or “this statement seems controversial, although on some points I agree with this opinion”.

The second sentence should contain an explanation of how it was understood approval. Need to write myself – that, in the opinion of the writer, the author want to say and why it seems so.

The main part of the essay is a detailed account of the author’s point of view, on the principle of “I think so, because …”. You can seek the assistance of other quotations and aphorisms, which jointly and severally writing.

The conclusion of the essay – the results of the work. This is a required item that make the piece complete.

Consider the main subjects for which written essay.

Social studies

So, in the course of social science may include:

  • sociology;
  • political science;
  • philosophy;
  • psychology;
  • economy.

Sample essays on social science graduates are often necessary when writing the exam. The structure of this work is fully consistent with the submitted structure. For testing knowledge students can provide the theme of quotes by famous philosophers, sociologists, and other figures of social Sciences.

Below are sample of essay writing in social studies (in summary form).

The theme: “In time of war the laws are silent. Lucan”

“After reading this statement for the first time, I decided that I absolutely agree with this statement. But a little later it occurred to me that this quote, like almost everything in our world is not so simple.

With the statement of Lucan I have been associated a different well-known aphorism – “In love and war all means are good.” Probably because many implicitly follow this rule, believing it to be true, and it turns out that in wartime all the laws prefer to keep quiet.

But there is another side of the coin: during the war, was the law of war. “Kill or be killed”. And heroes follow the laws that tell them their hearts. In the name of loved ones, family and friends.

It turns out that the war creates new laws. More rigid and uncompromising than peacetime.

Of course, I can understand the Lucan: all of his quotes suggest that this man adhered to a pacifist point of view. Loving yourself and I think. But specifically this statement does not pass the logical check on my part, so to say that I agree with him, I can’t.”

On the exam put a limit on the number of words in the interval. It is very important to stick to them, otherwise, even a carefully considered structure of the essay will not pass the verification of the examiner.

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