When you are faced with an essay title that incorporates the phrase “deliver a critical perspective on…”, the temptation can be to think that this means finds fault with a concept. However, in academic terms, taking a critical perspective means being able to demonstrate knowledge of different attitudes, interpretations, and viewpoints on the subject, and from this, being able to deliver a considered and informed opinion. In effect, a critical perspective essay requires to you to be able to show that there may be multiple ways to approach the main subject under discussion, but also to pick out, through analysis, which is the most viable perspective.
Sounds easy enough doesn’t it? If you follow our guide to producing the perfect critical perspective essay than yet it really is easy. An easy way to understand critical examination and thus arrive at a critical perspective is to remember that critical examination or evaluation picks out what is relevant or noteworthy to ensure understanding of how a thing (framework, hypothesis, phenomenon) works.
The aim of a persuasive essay is to convince your reader that your opinions and perspectives are correct. This can be done with a combination of emotive language and hard evidence to back up your viewpoint. You have to make the reader believe in the value of your opinion or standpoint, and sometimes to make the reader act. Fortunately, there are a number of techniques and approaches that can be used to ensure your persuasive essay presents a coherent, logical argument that cannot be denied by the reader.
In terms of structure, persuasive essays are relatively simple. Your arguments or opinions need to be clearly stated, reinforced, and backed with facts and evidence. Your summation, or conclusion should ensure that the reader is very clear about where you stand on the issue, so you need to be consistent throughout.
Planning your critical perspective essay
Stage one is identifying what it is you are being asked to critically evaluate and then take a perspective on. Typical essay titles include, “Discuss critical perspectives on the role censorship in modern music”, “Critically evaluate the main perspectives on the impact of social media on body image and state your own views on the subject”. In both cases, you are being asked to look at both sides of the argument and identify your own views.
Stage two requires identifying the key sources that will form the framework and rationale for your perspective. Whilst a critical perspective essay is essentially your own viewpoint, it is important to demonstrate how you have arrived at that view, based on research, evaluation of the evidence and an objective assessment of the facts.
Stage three draws up an outline of the arguments /points you wish to make in your essay and put them in a logical order. Chronologically works well but so does giving greater importance to key themes and then moving into sub-themes.
Writing your Critical Perspective Essay
Your introduction should be clear and unambiguous in stating the topic under question. Frequently a good essay will use either a clear statement (declarative) or a question which reflects the essay title. This tells the reader what you are discussing. The second part of the introduction should draw in your reader and motivate them to read more, as well as a clear statement of your own perspectives and how you intend to prove that they are correct (a thesis statement). Your introduction should conclude with a brief background to the topic and current views in the area. What this achieves is placing your work and perspective into a clear context for your reader.
The body text of your essay should have a focus of one paragraph per point / argument or topic so that the flow of information and argument is consistent. This is where an effective plan can help you clearly structure your essay. For each paragraph, you should introduce the main point/theme you are discussing before moving on to an explanation of your perspectives and why they are accurate in terms of the context of the work.
The explanation should then be followed by presentation of evidence that backs up your point of view. Here you can use quotes, statistics and other illustrative evidence but always ensure that your sources are credible and from trustworthy sources, as well as being correctly cited in the text and listed at the end of the work. An important element of every paragraph, and one most frequently missed by students is the linking of paragraphs, both to the opening statement and to the next point. Without linking the paragraphs an essay lacks cohesion and logical flow.
There are some key tips for critical perspective essay writing that help to reinforce the view you are trying to put across. These include repetition, which means making similar points in a range of ways, with different evidence. Repetition of points is not appropriate, but re-stating or reaffirming a perspective is crucial to ensuring that the reader comes to the same opinion as you.
A further valid approach is to indicate understanding of opposing perspectives. These should be stated, again with appropriate evidence from reliable sources. However, you should also add in reasons, backed by evidence as to why these perspectives are incorrect, which again reaffirms your own critical perspective.
The conclusion of your critical perspective essay should deliver a summation of all the points, bringing them together and reaffirming your original statement of opinion. A strong conclusion can ensure that your readers will be swayed by your arguments and thus take the same perspective on the issue that you have evidenced as being accurate.
Some Key phrases for a critical perspective essay
To ensure your essay is clearly persuasive, include some of the following words and phrases:
- I am certain that…
- It clearly follows that…
- Although it may seem…
- Considering…. this clearly indicates that …….
- I believe that…
- By the same token…