How to Write a Critical Lens Essay

Writing a critical lens essay requires students to be able to show their reading, writing and critical thinking skills as part of the requirements. Basically, you will be required to evaluate a specific quotation that is given as part of the essay question. The reading component of the critical lens essay requires that you not only read and understand the specific quotation, but also evaluate and rewrite it in your own words.

In order to do this effectively, it is important to understand the quotation. This is usually derived from a controversial literary reference that you should already be familiar with. Always read the quotation in detail, so that you are familiar not only with what the quotation says, but also with any underlying meanings that are associated with the quotation.

You will be required to form an opinion about the quotation and make a decision to either agree or disagree with it. Before you do this, write the original quotation down, and then rewrite the critical lens quotations in your own words. Together with this, provide your own perspective and interpretation of the meaning and significance of the particular critical lens quotation.

In order to enhance the points that you will discuss in your essay, you will need to select two works of classic literature that will support your perspective of the quotation. These must be works that you have detailed knowledge about, and that you should be able to cite factually and argumentatively to support your arguments in the critical lens essay. You will be required to provide examples and scenarios from these other works that are in line with your arguments.

The structure of your essay should be to separate the paragraphs so that each paragraph will only have one key argument that supports your analysis. This argument should contain not only your perspective but also provide reference to the supporting scenarios or quotations that you can provide from the other two essays. Be analytical when you write this part of your essay. Evaluate the content of each discussion as completely as you can. Your primary objective here is to convince the reader about each of your arguments completely, using the other two works of literature to support you.

Your conclusion should be a summary of the key points that you have raised. Restate the critical lens quotation so that you can link all the arguments together as part of your conclusion. Do not forget to stand firm on the perspective that you have taken in your essay. This will give the reader something to think about in terms of your perspective.

The idea is that the reader must be convinced that based on the arguments that you have presented, that they too are inclined to support your analysis.

What’s your opinion about writing a critical lens essay? Did you find it difficult to do, and did you have a lot of practice sessions before the actual assessment? Are there ways to practice for or write a critical lens essay that you would like to share? What are the problems you have faced in trying to do this? Go ahead and share both your positive as well as negative experiences. 

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