Students like writing compare and contrast essays as they have enough space for creativity. Such papers allow expressing your thoughts regarding some contradictive issues. It makes more fun to draw a parallel between two people or objects instead of describing a single issue.
It does not mean, however, that compare and contrast essay is an easy assignment to complete. There are so many possible compare and contrast essay topics, and some of them are hard to carry out.
Keys to Writing Compare & Contrast Essay
Before you start, it is crucial to choose topics that you really know well. Most often, you should find two things that have enough differences and similarities. You can take two pets, cats and dogs, while comparing a food (i.e., banana) with music (i.e., hard rock) basically, makes no sense.
Of course, if you're a part of Arts class where tutor appreciates uncommon parallelism, you may try your luck in your compare and contrast essay. You may talk about a sense of taste and the book of your favorite author. For instance, you may try to explain how it tastes to be Dracula. Or you can highlight how it smells to be Jean-Baptiste Grenouille from famous novel Perfume: The Story of a Murderer. Such creative comparisons are often appreciated and awarded with more than "A." Original and unexpected compare and contrast essay topics serve as your ticket to special universities where Arts are studied. Along with a personal statement written by professional writers, such essay will increase your chances to get enrolled.
Sources to be Used
In any case, writing about things to compare and contrast is an activity which requires your full attention and creativity. But when you have to compare things objectively, you should operate facts. Just like an argumentative essay, your text will need corresponding evidence. Search for the primary and secondary sources on the given topics before you start your first draft. Make sure these sources are no older than 5 years. They should be as relevant as possible. Don't forget to apply only credible sources to reveal your topics. Those are:
- Academic journals
- Scientific magazines
- Official reports
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How to Write a Compare and Contrast Essay
The traditional essay tips won't work with compare and contrast paper. We have gathered the best ideas online to share with students. If you write such assignment for the first time in your school or college life, read information from us.
You need to keep in mind the most common writing mistakes school and college students make to avoid them.
Start with the type of your compare and contrast essay topic. The topics are divided into 4 different groups:
- Events (point to the differences and similarities of some historical events or episodes from the book)
- Situations (choose to compare two different cases or episodes from your life)
- People or fiction characters (choose the story)
- Places (describe different locations)
No matter what comparison and contrast topics you write on, you need to keep to the traditional structure of the academic paper.
Start with a capturing and interesting hook. Outline what your topic is. Point to the main argument of your topic known as a thesis statement. This sentence or two usually come in the last sentence of your first paragraph.
- Developing your arguments
You need to research your topic to choose three claims. Include evidence with the supporting points next to each argument. There should be up to three supporting points in each body paragraphs.
- Refuting opponent's arguments
This time, you need to research the topic to view the facts that contradict your thesis. It is important to choose at least one example and develop a paragraph with the counter-argument as well. Write down maximum two opposing views followed by a couple of your refutations.
Restate your thesis statement and stress why your side is right once again.
You can learn more information on the structure of five-paragraph paper online.
Writing Tips Used by Smart American College Students
Moreover, use such helpful words as "because,""for example," "the writer mentioned...," "according to the book/movie," "from the given reading, we know that...," "on the following page, I have found..."
"Why do you believe Americans will win the next Olympic games?"
"According to the reading I have found in my college library, their team showed better results than Canadians during the last games."
- Check possible examples of compare and contrast essays when working in your hook sentence. It has a great influence on the reader's decision whether to read your text on a specific topic or not. You may add numbers, figures, facts - whatever to make your reader interested. On the whole, there are many types of hooks:
- Anecdotes and jokes
- Literary quotes
- Quotes of famous people
- Lines from poetry
- Setting scenes
- Scientific facts
- Questions and rhetorical questions
- Metaphors and similes
- Thesis statements
We think it is better to write a thesis statement in the last sentence of the argumentative essay’s introduction to conclude.
- Brainstorm all the time. The best way to decide on two good compare and contrast topics to analyze is to brainstorm and write down possible versions on a blank paper. Once you choose the subjects, you have to organize your thoughts. Prepare a table where you will mention both similarities and differences between the two subjects.
- Get professional help and examples. Find online educational services which help to choose some good sources on the given topic. Those can be movies, books, articles, etc. It is the last pre-writing stage which is known as a literature review. School and college students conduct in-depth research to enrich their compare and contrast essay drafts with important details. If you miss any words to finish your essay, a literature review is a brilliant way to reach the necessary word count.
- Don't forget about the formatting and in-text citations. Apply direct and indirect quotes to make your text longer and more persuasive. Citations will serve as the strong evidence to support your compare and contrast topics.
It was just a short preview of every section of your compare and contrast paper in English. Selecting the proper topics might take a while if you don't have a list of sample topics in front of you. We are ready to share the best compare and contrast essay subjects with you right now. You may use any example as the subject for your comparative essay when the theme is not assigned to you.
Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for College Students
We have divided the topics into several categories to make it easier to select one. The list starts with the most relevant subjects college students usually discuss. Other categories are full of great ideas too.
- School vs. College: What's New?
- Students Who Work and Unemployed Students: Who Takes the Best of This Life?
- Research Paper and Essay: What Is More Responsible?
- American English vs. British English: Major Differences
- What Makes Education and Employment Similar?
- SAT and TOEFL: Differences and Similarities
- How Are Master Degree and Ph.D. different?
- Persuasive and Argumentative Paper: Different or the Same
- Traditional Education or Remote Learning?
History and Political Compare and Contrast Essay Topics
- Comparison of Lincoln's and Washington' Ideas
- Renaissance vs. Baroque Epoch
- Anthropology vs. Religious Studies
- American Government vs. Soviet Government
- US President vs. UK Prime Minister
- North and South Before the Civil War in the US
- Henry VIII vs. King Louis XIV
- Fascism and Nazism: Different or the Same?
- World War I and World War II: Difference in Events
Compare and Contrast Topics for Beginners
- Compare Apple and Orange
- Night Time and Day Time: Advantages Each Period Has
- What Makes People Completely Different from Animals
- Living in Poverty and Being Rich
- Coffee and Tea: The Effects of Both
- Living in Big City or Staying in Village
- Feeling Sad against Feeling Lonely
- Differences and Similarities between American and British Traditional Dishes
- Camping in the Woods or Resting by the Sea?
Opposite Things to Compare and Contrast
- Females and Males
- Coke vs. Pepsi
- Red vs. White
- Country in War Compared to Country in Peace
- Driving a Car or Riding a Bus
- Love and Hatred
- Bad and Good Aspects of Overwork
- Moon and Sun
- Dolls or Soft Toys: What Should Parents Buy to Their Children?
Ideas Teenagers May Use in Their Papers
- Childhood vs. Adulthood
- Living at Home or Living on Campus
- Reading or Watching Screened Versions: What Teens Prefer
- Working in Office or Being a Freelancer?
- Academic Writing vs. Scientific Writing
- TV Shows and Radio Shows: What Is More Trendy?
- Education or Professional Career: What Is Easier and What Is More Difficult?
- Greek and Roman Culture: Differences and Similarities
- Comparing Art and Science Classes
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IT & Social Media Compare & Contrast Ideas
- E-mail or Traditional Mailing: What Will Happen in the Future?
- Online vs. Traditional Commerce
- Online Dating vs. Real-Life Relations
- Computer Games, Video Games, or Smartphone Games
- Choosing between New York Times and Forbes
- FaceBook or MySpace: Which Social Network Offers More Opportunities?
- Searching for Job Online or Traditionally?
- Using Online Writing Services against Traditional Writing Services
- Benefits Marketing Specialists Get from Using Online Advertising vs. Traditional One
Movie & Music Compare and Contrast Themes
- Buffy, the Vampire Slayer or Charmed?
- Books against Movies: Why Reading Is Preferred
- Jazz vs. Rock
- Sam vs. Frodo Baggins (Lord of the Rings)
- Gandalf vs. Dumbledore
- American Cinematography vs. Soviet Union Cinematography
- Thor and Loki: Friends or Enemies According to Movie of 2009?
- Horror Films and Thrillers: What's in Common?
- Harry Potter or Draco Malfoy?
Literature Compare & Contrast Ideas
- Comedy vs. Drama
- Greek vs. Roman Mythology
- Beauty and the Beast: Lessons Learned
- Prose or Lyrics: What People Prefer More and Why?
- Poetry of XIII Century and Nowadays Lyrics
- Shakespeare's Othello Compared to Hamlet
- Fiction or Non-Fiction Literature: When You May Need Different Types?
- Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter: Which Fantasy Book Is Better?
- Literature of the Past against Literature of the Future
Scientific Compare & Contrast Ideas
- Oven vs. Microwave
- Physics vs. Chemistry
- Our Galaxy, Milky Way, and Andromeda, the Closest
- What Makes Earth Different from Mars
- First Mission to Moon and Second Visit: What Are the Differences and Similarities?
- Thomas Jefferson or DaVinci: Whose Innovations Matter More?
- Earthquakes or Tsunami: Which Consequences Are Worse?
- Limited Control Tools or Software with Fool Access to Navigation
- Formulas of Two Different Chemical Reactions
Popular Compare & Contrast Ideas
- Soccer vs. Football
- Chinese vs. Korean
- Public Opinion vs. Personal Point of View: Discuss Subjectivity & Objectivity
- Juice and Water
- Light Beer vs. Dark Beer: Which One Is More Popular?
- Anorexia Nervosa and Obesity: What Is More Dangerous?
- Marriage and Divorce: Two Sides of the Coin
- Windows or Linux: Paid vs. Free OS
- Marxism vs. Other Ideas of Capitalism
Philosophy Compare & Contrast Ideas
- Is Home Really a Better Place Than Miami Beach?
- Life and Death: Various Philosophical Views
- Living in Your Dreams or Living in Reality: Pros and Cons
- Friends and ... Where Is the Edge?
- Physical & Mental Needs of Human Beings
- Reality or Fantasy World?
- Main Philosophical Ideas of Macbeth against the Main Ideas of Hamlet
- Dogs and Humans: They Are More Similar Than We Think
- Sources with Free Access and Rights Reserved: Should We Protect Intellectual Property?
- Greek Philosophers vs. Roman Philosophers
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Below you will find four outstanding thesis statements / paper topics for “The Martian Chronicles” by Ray Bradbury that can be used as essay starters. All four incorporate at least one of the themes found in “The Martian Chronicles” and are broad enough so that it will be easy to find textual support, yet narrow enough to provide a focused clear thesis statement. These thesis statements offer a short summary of “The Martian Chronicles” terms of different elements that could be important in an essay. You are, of course, free to add your own analysis and understanding of the plot or themes to them. Using the essay topics below in conjunction with the list of important quotes, you should have no trouble connecting with the text and writing an excellent essay.Topic # 1: Parables of Human Folly
We destroy Earth and then go to Mars taking with us the same follies, foibles and weaknesses that destroyed our home planet. Will Mars too be destroyed? Will that mean the extinction of the human race? Are humans dangerous to the concept of survival? What is man’s role in the state of the world today?
Topic #2: Parallels in the Different Narratives
The narrative “And the Moon Will Still Be as Bright” is about the arrival of the fourth expedition on Mars. Mars is empty, all its inhabitants dead. Dr. Hathaway, from the fourth expedition, says chicken pox is a cause. This is very reminiscent of the European invasion of the Americas, which introduced diseases that devastated native populations. Captain Spender also strongly criticizes man’s propensity for destruction, lack of respect for differences and selfishness. This parallel runs in the other narratives as well. Examine the significance of this or any other parallel through the book, and explore the commentary the author may have intended.Topic #3: Colonization
People from Earth have colonized Mars and have imposed their symbols of life, like hot dog stands and insane asylums. What happens to the Martian way of life? Is that completely destroyed? Questions to explore here will include examining the colonizers attitudes and how those colonized work to save their traditions from being overtaken and lost. Draw parallels to world history when countries have been colonized to further deepen your observations.
Topic #4: The Fragmented Narrative Style
The stories, at first glance, seem to be stand alone pieces that aren’t connected. But a further examination shows that certain themes run across the narratives, like those of exploration, exploitation, and ideas of colonization. What are the ways the narratives connect to whole a structure? Can this be looked as a novel of interconnected parts?
The Martian Chronicles Quotes
This list of important quotations from “The Martian Chronicles” by Ray Bradbury will help you work with the essay topics and thesis statements on our paper topics by allowing you to support your claims. All of the important quotes from “The Martian Chronicles” listed here correspond, at least in some way, to the paper topics we created, and by themselves can give you great ideas for an essay by offering quotes about other themes, symbols, imagery, and motifs than those already mentioned.
“It’s like when I was a boy," said Father Peregrine. “We heard about wars in China. But we never believed them. It was too far away. And there were too many people dying. It was impossible. Even when we saw the motion pictures we didn’t believe it. Well, that’s how it is now. Earth is China. It’s so far away it’s unbelievable. It’s not here. You can’t touch it. You can’t even see it. All you see is a green light. Two billion people living on that light? Unbelievable! War? We don’t hear the explosions."
Father Peregrine says these words to the Proprietor of The Luggage Store as they analyze news about a devastating war on Earth. It seems very remote (an analogy of how we are often removed from events happening in different parts of the world far from our secure countries) and Father Peregrine and the Proprietor wonder what people who were expected to come to Mars do in case this is the “Big War" that has been expected to happen for a while. Mars has been colonized by people from Earth. Will they stay behind or will their ties take them back to their home planet?
“There was Earth and there the coming war, and there hundreds of thousands of mothers or grandmothers or fathers or brothers or aunts or uncles or cousins."
This quote from the chapter “November 2005 the Watchers" depict the devastation that war causes and the ultimate losses in human terms. Ultimately it’s not just people who perish but families. This also underlines the whole premise of the narratives contained in the book. As planetary astronomer Carl Sagan has said, “Mars has become a kind of mythic arena onto which we have projected our Earthly hopes and fears."
Sam Parkhill motioned with the broom, sweeping away the blue Martian sand. “Here we are,” he said. “Yes, sir, look at that!” He pointed. “Look at that sign. SAM'S HOT DOGS! Ain't that beautiful, Elma?"
Sam Parkhill wants to take advantage of the lack of competition on Mars and has opened his hot dog stall. This celebrates the absurdity of having something as mundane as hot dogs on Mars. As an analogy it highlights the dangers and absurdness of the whole idea of colonization. It is a telling comment on the concept of colonization and the way it affects all the parties involved.
He moved quietly down through a series of ruins. “Made in New York,” he read from a piece of metal as he passed. “And all these things from Earth will be gone long before the old Martian towns.” He looked towards the fifty-centuries -old village that lay among the Blue Mountains.
The Great War on earth has happened. Mars is also a dead planet. Taken from the chapter April 2026: The Long Years, this quote by Hathaway, one of the last inhalants on Mars, is a sad comment on his loneliness. Hathaway’s real family is dead. He now has replicas to keep up the semblance of his wife and children.
The fire burned on the stone hearth and the cigar fell away into a mound of quiet ash on its tray. The empty chairs faced each other between the silent walls, and the music played.
Taken from the narrative titled “AUGUST 2026: There Will Come Soft Rains", it is used to depict the strangeness of life without humans and animals. This is the last house left standing and it functions just as if people were living in it. In the climax it burns down.
“I was looking for Earthian logic, common sense, good government, peace, and responsibility."
Taken from the chapter, “OCTOBER 2026: The Million-Year Picnic" towards the end of the book, Dad, orWilliam Thomas, says this in the context of the family picnic he has arranged to see Martians. Returning to the theme of colonization, the family on Mars is shown taking a trip to see the native Martians who are obliterated. Around them rockets are self-destructing and the Martians who they have come to see are reflected in the water.
“We are from Earth. I'm Captain Williams. We've landed on Mars within the hour.”
Captain Williams has just landed on Mars. They are colonizers and are victims of the same kind of bureaucracy on Earth. They are made to wait and finally think they have met the right people but soon discover they are no officers but inmates of an insane asylum.
“Don't leave me here on this terrible world, I've got to get away; there's going to be an atom war! Don't leave me on Earth!”
The atomic war that will finally destroy Earth is about to begin and no one wants to be left behind. Pritchard, a resident of Ohio wants to be taken desperately to Mars. After all he believes he qualifies since he is a model citizen and pays his taxes on time.
“And it's a small town the like of Earth towns,” said Hinkston, the archaeologist “Incredible. It can't be, but it is."
The Third Expedition has landed on Mars and they are surprised to discover a village straight from Earth from years ago. But more surprises await them. They see their own family members, long dead, coming towards them.
“We'll rip it up, rip the skin off, and change it to fit ourselves…We Earth Men have a talent for ruining big, beautiful things.”
The Forth Expedition has landed and the explorers are looking at a deserted planet. As one of the crew members throws empty bottles into a canal, Captain Spender pushes him into the canal and extrapolates on man’s behavior and the idea of possessiveness that ultimately destroys instead of fosters gentle and creative energies.