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01/16/2020

(An example would be a summary of the text of a paper by a scientist.)

(An example would be a summary of the text of a paper by a scientist.)
What is the difference here? As far as the content of an analytical essay is concerned: the subject is the analysis, the content is the thesis that is derived from the analysis (which is the “text”). The goal of an analytical essay is to develop the thesis.
Let me illustrate the difference with an example: Suppose the thesis is that the following facts are true: the total area of the solar system is 25,000 times that of the planet Earth; the total mass in the solar system is 10 billion times that of the Earth; and the distance to the closest Earth-like planet, Proxima Centauri, is 30 light-years away. Here is the text of the essay:
This essay analyzes these points of fact to arrive at the following thesis: namely, the claim that the total area of the solar system is 25,000 times the Earth’s area. This is true because the total mass in the solar system is 10 billion times the Earth’s mass. (The total mass of the solar system is greater than the earth–or a smaller sphere with approximately the same volume.) This, again, is true because the distance to the nearest Earth-like planet, Proxima Centauri, in light-years is 30 light-years.
An essay such as this has two parts. The first part is the “presentation” in which the topic is explained, and the second part is where the thesis is developed through some type of analysis. Now, if an essay such as this would be written by a student who knew nothing about the solar system, it would probably consist of the following text: The Sun is 25,000 times the Earth’s surface area. We are also about 30 light years from the nearest Earth-like planet (Proxima Centauri).
Why is an analytical essay not the same as a “text”? Because while an essay is a written piece of text, analysis is a type of reasoning: it means asking questions, evaluating and comparing the arguments presented, and then evaluating the analysis and arriving at an evaluation.
Here is another case as an illustration that analytically an essay may look very different from a text: Suppose that the thesis is that the moon is a giant rock. The thesis is stated in simple terms in a text like this: We know that the moon is a giant rock–because the moon reflects some light; other people can prove this by looking at the way the moon reflects light. (The theory of relativity says that the moon is a giant rock because it follows Newton’s law of gravity, which is that anything falling in a gravitational field takes a certain amount of time to fall to its final point; and it looks like gravity is true because the moon, with its mass and gravitational pull (which varies with its distance from us), is falling toward us.) Therefore, the “proof” that the moon is a giant rock depends only on the claim in the text. (The point is that the thesis must be stated in simple terms.) The text of an essay is not a text because any more technical statement could provide answers to the thesis without any additional information. (This is why there are many academic subjects that are not texts but still have a text or thesis part. Some examples are: physics, astronomy, astronomy-astronomy. They may be very long; but any further detail might change the conclusions–