What Is An Analogy Essay?
An analogy compares two unlike things to illustrate common elements of both. An analogy essay is an extended analogy, which explains one thing in considerable depth by comparing it to another. Analogy essays discuss nearly anything, as long as the writer can find a comparison that fits.
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How to use analogies:
- As introductions for papers where you want to show how two ideas are parallel.
- To explain unknown/abstract concepts in terms familiar to or easily understood by your reader. For example when explaining the storage pattern for a Macintosh computer, you might liken the hard drive icon to a large filing cabinet.
Steps For Writing An Analogy Essay
1. Come up with an analogy
One-half of the analogy is the subject of explanation, while the other half is the explainer. For example, if you said growing up is like learning to ride a bike, you would be explaining something complex and subtle (growing up) in terms of something simple that your audience will be familiar with (riding a bike.)
2. Draw a vertical line down the middle of a piece of paper to divide it in half.
On one half, write characteristics of the explainer, and on the other half, the explained. Try to match up the characteristics. For example, training wheels might be similar to having to have lots of supervision when you are young.
3. Write a paragraph discussing the explainer.
Start with a statement like "Growing up is like learning to ride a bike." Then explain the stages of learning to ride a bike.
4. Write a paragraph discussing the explained.
Start with a statement that gives an overview of what the two shares. In the example above, you might say something like "Growing up also involves getting greater and greater freedoms as you become more confident”. Then explain the steps of the explained in a way that parallels the explainer.
5. Discuss the differences.
Sometimes there is a very important aspect of the explained that does not match up with the explainer. For example, in the above essay, you eventually completely learn to ride a bike, but you never stop growing up and learning new things. You may want to draw attention to this important distinction.
6. Review your choice of words for denotation and connotation.
The allure of analogies is such that they can lend themselves to exaggeration. Fight this tendency, as it will only jeopardize your credibility.
A List Of Successful Analogy Essay Topics For University
The analogy essay requires a student to explain one thing in relation to its similarity to another. Often the two things are not closely related on the surface and through analysis the similarities become clear to the reader.
Choosing a good topic in this style requires a little of each of the following:
- A good idea of how things can be connected
- Access to adequate research materials
- A knowledge of what topics have been used most frequently in the past
- A good understanding of the use of simile in this type of essay
Everything is made up of the same basic stuff. On a molecular level we are all fairly similar so finding a way to connect any two things just requires the patience to look past the obvious and see the rest.
A topic may seem good but later show itself to not be usable because it requires the write to engage in far too much research for the given time frame.
Some topics have been written on so much that if anyone new writes them, they will undoubtedly add nothing original to the conversation. Even a very good writer would find him or herself producing work that gets easily overlooked because someone else has written on the subject with more clarity and done so years earlier.
You can easily say one thing is like another or brings another to mind but the moment you say that it actually is something else, you cross the line into metaphor. As you think of potential concepts, make sure to phrase them properly or you will end up writing a different sort of essay altogether and that is not your intent.
With the preceding tips in mind you can begin brainstorming. Some of the ideas you might come up with are as follows:
- Life is like a box of chocolates
- Adolescence is like being the least important adult in the room at all times
- Cats are like dogs without affection
- Politics is like prostitution
- Music is like magic
- Capitalism is like slavery
- Genocide is like death of the whole world
- Death is like the start of a new life
- Poverty is like a slow death
- Dreams are like freedom
The topics you just read are concise and can appeal to many different types of readers and writers. If any one of them stands out to you, try writing on it just for practice to improve your skills for later.