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 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…

Arriving at Perfection by Benjamin Franklin

Intention: To document Benjamin Franklin’s efforts to live each day without committing any faults which he characterized as failing to act in the manner defined by his thirteen virtues. Franklin wanted to acquire the habit of living by these virtues. Franklin’s writing is very clear and plain, explaining his entire thought process. He goes through…

How We Listen by Aaron Copland

Intention: Copland informs us on the subject of music and the various ways that we listen to it. According to him, the different planes we listen on are the sensuous plane, the expressive plane, and the musical plane. Each plane of listening has its own purpose and advantages and knowing about them can help us…

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…

Naps by Barbara Holland

Intention: Holland’s intention in this essay is to bring to light the importance of daily naps, and explain the benefits of napping in the middle of the afternoon. -Holland appeals to logos and builds her credibility with the audience by explaining other countries customs and views on napping versus the U.S.’s. For example, she tells…

The Crimson Tide by Atul Gawande

Intention- The intention of The Crimson Tide is to explore and explain to the audience the different reasons behind why a person blushes. Gawande explores the common belief that blushing is merely caused by embarrassment, and he proposes evidence that it is not merely caused by embarrassment, but instead is a sort of reflex humans have…

On Ben Franklin’s Virtues by D.H. Lawrence

Intention: Lawrence’s intention in this essay is to criticize Ben Franklin’s self-improvement essay. He responds to Franklin’s plan for achieving perfection and explains why it will not work. -Lawrence’s tone throughout the essay is sarcastic and disrespectful toward Franklin and his ideas. His dislike for Franklin’s ideas is shown through this tone and when he…

The Wound in the Face by Angela Carter

Intention: Carter’s intention in this essay is to bring attention to the “wounds” that are deeply imbedded in the culture of women’s beauty. She describes makeup trends throughout history, and uses a mouth with red lipstick as a symbol of the wounds inflicted on women, while bringing into question the sense of security of women….

Beauty: When the Other Dancer is the Self by Alice Walker

Intention: The intention of this essay is to show that we are often our harshest critics when it comes to beauty and we often let that affect our outlook on our lives. The intention of this piece is also to tell of her childhood experience with beauty, and how she came to feel beautiful after…

On Self-Respect by Joan Didion

The essay On Self-Respect by Joan Didion explores the meaning of self-respect and the key qualities behind it of having honesty, integrity, and discipline to achieve it. Joan Didion explains why self-respect is so important and how it should be viewed in a positive light and not considered being full of oneself in achieving it….

The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell

Gladwell’s intention is to offer information on how and why epidemics of any kind occur. Arrangement: “The Tipping Point” is the opening essay in Gladwell’s book of the same title. This piece is meant to introduce readers to Gladwell’s ideas and set the context for the remainder of the book.  It immediately begins with an…