Published on August 6, by Jack Caulfield. Revised on October 15, Comparing and contrasting is an important skill in academic writing. It involves taking two or more subjects and analyzing the differences and similarities between them.
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History Essay: Topics, Tips and the Outline | HandMadeWriting
Let's take an example of comparing and contrasting the consolidation of power of two different Communist leaders, Stalin and Mao Tse-tung. The answer should address both key components of the question equally. There should be a balance between comparing and contrasting. That's why it is best to divide arguments rather basing on issue discussed than the leader discussed. For example, this way in one argument we would discuss how the leaders used violence and terror in their rise to power. Rather than mentioning that both of them did so though, it is better to outline the methods that they used and compare those to each other, highlighting the similarities and pointing out the differences. The Great Terror accompanied by Great Purge launched a succession of trials against prominent figures of Politburo that could threaten Stalin's complete grasp on power and who in consequence had to be eliminated.
How to Write an Art Comparison Essay
The key to a good compare-and-contrast essay is to choose two or more subjects that connect in a meaningful way. The purpose of conducting the comparison or contrast is not to state the obvious but rather to illuminate subtle differences or unexpected similarities. For example, if you wanted to focus on contrasting two subjects you would not pick apples and oranges; rather, you might choose to compare and contrast two types of oranges or two types of apples to highlight subtle differences.
A compare and contrast essay examines two or more subjects by comparing their similarities and contrasting their differences. Compare and contrast is high on Bloom's Taxonomy of critical reasoning and is associated with a complexity level where students break down ideas into simpler parts in order to see how the parts relate. For example, in order to break down ideas for comparison or to contrast in an essay, students may need to categorize, classify, dissect, differentiate, distinguish, list, and simplify.