The word “criticism” for many is associated with condemnation, the identification of negative aspects. You might think that writing a critical essay boils down to smashing all the author’s arguments and showing how weak his work is. But in fact, this is not so.
To begin with, criticism implies an analysis that identifies both the negative and the positive aspects of the phenomenon under consideration. A critical essay is a kind of essay in which it is necessary to analyze and evaluate any scientific work (thesis, article, report) or a work of art.
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Technique of Work with the Source
- First of all, stock up on a copy of the original work. If it is a scientific article or a short story, then it will not be difficult for you to make a photocopy. It is more complicated with volume work like a dissertation or a capacious art book. If the work exists in electronic form, then you can review it on the computer, for example, using the review tools in the Microsoft Word program. In other cases, you will have to make all the entries in the scratch pad.
- If the work is small, first read it to get a general idea of it. Describe in an arbitrary form your impression of the work, and also make a small annotation. In case of voluminous work, read the individual chapters and describe your impression of each of them. In large works, it makes sense to immediately make the necessary notes (see below).
- When you read again, pay attention to the details. If this is a scientific work, check the argumentation of the theses put forward, pay attention to the logical harmony, completeness, clarity of presentation and other points. In the literature it is worth paying attention to the plot lines developed in the work, the elaboration of the characters, the originality of the plot, the presence of the climax, and so on.
- Emphasize everything that puzzled you or upset you. Write down questions on the margins or in the notebook, note inaccuracies, weak and strong work places. All this will help you with the further writing of the essay.
Starting an Essay
- Do not forget to write the essay competently, maintaining its structure.
- In the water part of the critical essay, the work itself and its author should be designated. It is recommended to note the regalia of the scientist or writers, as well as the date of publication of his work.
- Briefly describe the problem raised in the work. In the case of scientific work, be sure to identify the purpose of the work, the main scientific statement and the author’s arguments.
- Describe the experience of the author. When considering scientific work, be sure to find out how much the scientist is authoritative in the scientific community. Authority is confirmed by publications in significant publications, high citation of previously published works, availability of scientific papers, titles, degrees, etc. Note how scientist is correct and accurate in the work. Does not it use obsolete or questionable sources of information from the point of view of science, always confirms its arguments with arguments, does it consistently state the material? If it is a writer, pay attention to his experience. Be sure to note in the essay that the author is a novice in this activity, or list his merits, if this is an experienced writer. In the second case, compare his skill in the current and first works.
Finishing an Essay
- Go to the main part of the essay, which should be larger in volume than the introduction and conclusion. In the case of writing a critical essay on scientific work, the main part should be devoted to the presence of arguments in the work and the detection of counterarguments. Determine what the work describes too vaguely and requires further explanation, which is ambiguous, which requires new research. Perhaps you think the author’s system or technique is too complicated to be implemented in a specific area. Explain your point of view and suggest solutions to the problem. At the same time, although this is an essay, it should be closer to research work (diploma, course, thesis) than to literature.
- Proceed to the conclusion. Describe in it your general opinion about the work analyzed. Do you agree with the author’s arguments? Suggest your solutions, which you came up with during the reading of materials: what can be improved or supplemented. Also indicate in the conclusion, what is the significance of the work done by the author. If he is a scientific worker, then his work should have some significance for the further development of science. The writer may have succeeded in discovering acute social problems, describing a new culture or doing other meaningful work for society.
- Reread your critical essay and make any necessary adjustments: correct mistakes, remove minor phrases, strengthen weak points. At the same time, make sure that your work is written in a benevolent tone and does not contain unacceptable attacks against the author in the form of hidden or obvious insults.
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When writing essays on artistic work, focus on the problems revealed by the author, the construction of a system of images, the disclosure of the characters’ characters, the use of original artistic techniques, etc. Describe the most successful and unfortunate moments. Such an essay should be more artistic than a scientific version. Use the well-known literary techniques, write vividly and vividly, leading successful comparisons, so that your essay something hooked the reader and caused him to read the original.
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Do You Need a Critical Essay Urgent?
Students can be given the task of writing a critical essay in order to develop their critical thinking, because in the course of their work they will learn to identify contradictions, find errors, inaccuracies, see the strengths and weaknesses of work, and verify the authenticity of certain arguments.