Between the Sexes, A Great Divide by Anna Quindlen

Intention: Quindlen writes of the huge separation between men and women in her piece, humorously ruminating on how the two genders can even get along. She then shifts to explain that although the two groups are very different, it is how they use their differences together that is really important. She opens her essay by…

The Seam of the Snail by Cynthia Ozick

The intention of the essay is to compare and contrast the styles of excellence between the author and her mother. Imagery: The author of “The Seam of the Snail” uses strong imagery throughout the essay to provide visuals for the audience and to invoke emotion in the reader. She compares herself to the snail, oozing…

The Company Man by Ellen Goodman

Intention:  The intention of the piece is to force readers to think about family, loved ones, what they truly value and how they spend their time.  It is supposed to make readers want to expend their energy on things that mean something to them and not waste their time away. >Goodman tells the story of…

Marrying Absurd by Joan Didion

The intention of this essay is to expose the shallow and cheap nature of Las Vegas weddings.  With the use of satire, Joan Didion shows the superficialness of not only those who marry in Las Vegas but of other American traditions and rituals.  The essay gives specific examples of how Las Vegas weddings are both, “bizarre…

Burl’s by Bernard Cooper

Intention: A young boy’s confusion over his sexual identity and how the world is categorized is conveyed through the explanation of several stories from his childhood. It is written in the perspective of the young boy as an adult looking back on his experiences (the stories) and how the awareness of his sexual feelings developed. In…

Why I Want a Wife by Judy Brady

Intention: The intention of this piece is to emphasize the unrealistic expectations society has for women once they are married. Ethos: Brady begins this essay by making an appeal to ethos, “I belong to that classification of people known as wives. I am a Wife. And, not altogether incidentally, I am a mother.” This appeal…

Aria: A Memoir of a Bilingual Childhood by Richard Rodriguez

The intention of Aria: A Memoir of a Bilingual Childhood is to make known and reflect on the struggles of bilingual children in an environment where English had become the primary language for communication. Rodriguez uses first person accounts of his life and family culture to describe what he lost and gained while transitioning from…

Under The Influence by Scott Russell Sanders

The intention of “Under the Influence” by Scott Sanders is to talk about the life he had with an alcoholic father and how this influenced his life. He writes about the “corrosive mixture of helplessness, responsibility, and shame”, which Scott had to carry around with him as a son of an alcoholic. The pathos of…