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Teacher Tips and Answers

Reading a Comparison-Contrast Essay

Before you write your own comparison-contrast essay, you should read and respond to an essay written by another student. This student was studying the civil rights movement in Advanced Placement U.S. History and decided to compare and contrast two key documents from the leaders in 1963: Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X.

Reading a Student Model

Read the following comparison-contrast essay, in which Lamar analyzes King's "Letter from a Birmingham Jail" and Malcolm X's "Message to the Grassroots." Lamar introduces both documents, reviews each separately (topic-by-topic organization), looks at the similarities and differences of each, and then evaluates both using argumentation and analogy. Click on the side notes to see the features of this comparison-contrast essay.

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