How to write a persuasive literature essay

Writing a persuasive literature essay is an intimidating task for many, but it doesn’t have to be! By following some simple guidelines, you’ll find that your essay is a lot simpler to write than you ever imagined possible.

Literary Essays

Literature essays, or literary essays, focus on a topic in the field of literature. These topics can vary widely: they can include something as specific as a motif, character, or passage in one particular piece of writing, or they can focus on a topic as broad as a certain theme in an entire genre of writing. Choosing to write a persuasive literature essay means you’ll need to have a good thesis statement that works well with both literary topics and persuasive writing styles.

Persuasive Essays

Persuasive essays may make students nervous, but it’s important to realize that nearly all the essays you’ve written in the past have been persuasive to a certain degree. After all, you’ve generally used essays to try and get your point of view across to the reader. The only difference with a persuasive essay is the fact that you’re being more aggressive and assuming that the reader is already in disagreement with you. Writing persuasive essays will improve your overall essay writing abilities, as they challenge you to imagine a less cooperative audience.

Choosing a Topic

The key to writing a persuasive literary essay that impresses your instructor is to choose a good topic. Here are some factors that should be considered when doing so:

  • The topic should be a strong one in the literary sense.
  • You’ll need to cite sources and complex ideas to be persuasive, so the literary part of your topic should be one which there’s plenty of information about.

  • The topic should be at least a little bit controversial
  • Your persuasive efforts will come across as weak or insincere if you choose a topic which contains no controversial elements at all. You have to have some sort of plausible belief that there are reasonable readers that may disagree with you, otherwise your writing is simple pandering.

  • You don’t have to pick a topic you actually agree with.
  • If you’re having difficulty coming up with an interesting topic that meets the above criteria, try thinking outside of the box. A persuasive essay doesn’t necessarily have to reflect your own feelings. It can be more fun and engaging, in fact, to write from a different point of view!