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Steps to Writing a Critical Analysis: Brilliant Guide

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A critical analysis evaluates works such as an article, to ascertain how effective it makes a point or argument. Usually, such reviews are applied to books or articles, but not limited to these two since they can also be applied to paintings and films. And, your focus should be on total effectiveness and the ability of the article when writing a critical analysis or choosing your perfect nursing lit review topics.

Different Types of Critical Analysis

  • Biographical criticism: This type looks into how readers can comprehend a literary work more thoroughly by understanding the author’s life. It involves interpreting a literary work with the insights that the knowledge of the author’s life provides.
  • Reader-response criticism: This is the type of critical analysis that describes what goes on in the mind of a reader during a text review and interpretation. This type of critique may also examine a particular text’s impact on the reader’s values or ideas.
  • Sociological criticism: It explores literature in the economic, cultural, as well as political context that the work is based on. In essence, it includes analysis of a literary work’s social content – economic, cultural, or political values that a specific text explicitly or implicitly expresses.

Other types of critical analysis include historical, gender, mythological, formalist, new-historicism, and psychoanalytic criticisms.

Applications of Critical Analysis Methods

steps to writing a critical analysis

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Critical analysis writing can be applied in different papers such as literature; in this case, you should familiarize yourself with the steps and format for writing a critical analysis of literature. Also, critical analizing methods can be used for articles and books. And, as mentioned earlier, films and paintings can also be analyzed using critical writing.

Guide to Write a Critical Analysis

Critical Reading

Critical analysis begins with critical reading of the work, during which you would do the following:

Determine the author’s thesis

Now, when it comes to writing a critical analysis, the first step is to identify the author’s point of argument – the thesis. For an academic work, this task is easier compared to a creative work such as a painting or movie.

You should also find out what prompted the author to argue for or against the point in question. Did the author offer solution, and how realistic is the solution offered?

Note down the main ideas

The next step on how to start a critical analysis is to note down the main ideas of the work as you read critically. The essence is so that you can analyze the structure of the work. For academic works, you can often find the main ideas among the topic sentences in each section or paragraph.

Research material that you’re not familiar with

Usually, in-depth research is not needful, except the entire work is based on totally unfamiliar idea or concept. Otherwise, use an encyclopedia or dictionary to check terminologies as well as other material you are not familiar with.

Use your own words to describe the work

You can aid this by making a critical analysis outline. Another option at your disposal is to write a concise summary. And, thorough reading of the work will help you achieve both options.

If you choose to write a summary, it should be not more than one paragraph or two. As much as you can, use your own words to construct the summary.

Determine the appeals employed

Pathos, Ethos and Logos are the three primary types of appeals. So, you should determine which of them the author employed in the work. If the author tried to appeal to the emotions of a reader, it means pathos was used in the work. Logos involves the use of logic to sway a reader’s opinion or perspective, while ethos is used to appeal to credibility.

Writing the Analysis

Introduce the work

Provide all important pieces of information as you introduce the work you’re writing a critical analysis on, including the title as well as the author. Starting with a concise summary could be great idea.

critical analysis writing advice

Insert the point that author intends to argue

Consider doing this in the first paragraph – inserting an explicit and clear statement of what the author is arguing for or against.

Hit the main points

Marshal out the main points in the sentences of your introduction. And, describe the author’s main supporting evidences/points (each one) in subsequent paragraphs, then carry out an evaluation on them.

Support your evaluation

Use comprehensive evidence from the text to support your assessment. And, remember to adopt the right citation for paraphrases and quotes.

In addition to the steps above, you should not forget that critical analysis is not the same as summary. Yes, summary may be part of it, but not all there is to it.

When you write critical analysis, you should provide informed critique in regard to the material in question. Bear in mind that the goal of this type of writing is to assess or evaluate. In essence, is the text or work worthwhile, significant, useful, truthful or valid? Don’t forget to choose a critical analysis topic.

How to Write a Literature Critical Analysis

A literature critical analysis’ goal is to explain a work of fiction, drama or poetry with interpretations. Just like any other critical analysis, you need to deepen and broaden your understanding of the literary work in question.

Here’s a summary of tips on how to write this type of analysis:

  • Read the assignment material thoroughly and seek further explanation from your professor where applicable
  • Review literary jargon or terms mentioned in the assignment handout or material
  • Read the literature work in question twice or more
  • If you are to choose, go for a literature that you’re familiar with and narrow down on a specific area
  • Make an outline
  • Follow the details in the assignment handout, including the recommended format

Finally, it’s also helpful to contact our professional essay editing help services for your critical analysis writing or writing a scientific journal article.

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