Organizing your compare and contrast essay on crime
Regardless of location and time, there is a possibility that the community you live in faces cases of crime. Due to the controversy that surrounds crime, you might have to write an essay that compares two aspects of crime
While it seems as though a compare and contrast essay simply involves making a comparison, there is more to it. A comparative essay about crime should;
- State an unknown fact about the crime
- Clear up misconceptions about crime
- Show how one aspect of the criminal justice system is superior to the other
- Give the reader a new understanding of certain aspects of crime
While there are many formats that can be used when writing a compare and contrast essay, it is much simpler to deal with one aspect of both sides at a time. This structure which deals with one similarity/difference at a time is much easier for the reader to follow.
The compare and contrast essay on crime will begin with an introduction which defines the two subjects that you intend to compare. You could select one of the following subjects for comparison;
- Life in Prison versus Capital Punishment- under this topic you will compare the advantages and disadvantages of both while focusing on aspects such as the cost, prison capacity, and ethical considerations
- Felony versus Misdemeanor- you would have to discuss the differences and similarities between each of the two classifications.
- The criminal justice systems of two different countries- you would have to analyze aspects of each system and the effects on the society
Apart from identifying the subjects of your comparison, your introduction must also have a thesis statement that expresses specific details of the direction your essay is going to take.
Next, you need to write the body paragraphs for you comparative essay. The number of paragraphs will depend on how many points of comparison you intend on having. All paragraphs, however, must be built around a single point of comparison.
Each body paragraph will begin with a topic sentence which states the main idea you intend to discuss. The topic sentence will be followed by statements of the similarity or difference among your two subjects. The conclusions of each paragraph will emphasize the point you were trying to make. Each of the body paragraphs will have a similar structure
Once you have analyzed each point of comparison, you will move on to the conclusion of your essay on crime. Your conclusion borrows heavily from your thesis statement and body paragraphs and is the easiest part of writing.
The conclusion has to give a summary of the main points of your essay. Instead of simply running through the points, the conclusion must prove your thesis correct by relating it to the points in the body paragraphs
The conclusion also has to evaluate your discussion or offer recommendations for future improvements. At this point your reader must be wondering, so what? The conclusion offers an opportunity for you to show the relevance of your topic and possible future direction that the discussion could take.
Finally, you need to prove that you have achieved your goal. Remember, your intention was to compare and contrast aspects of crime. Your conclusion must bring your essay full circle and prove that you have managed to perform a comparative analysis.
Mistakes to avoid when writing an essay on crime
- Choosing a topic that is too general
- Leaning too much on one side of comparison; both subjects must be given equal attention
- Attempting to persuade your reader to accept your opinion on either subject. In a comparative essay, your job is simply to state the facts and have the reader informed
- Failing to cite your sources accurately. This amounts to plagiarism and must be avoided at all costs.
With this comprehensive guide, you are now ready to begin writing your compare and contrast essays on a topic of your choice that relates to crime.