Essays on comparative literature are very popular among educators in English and liberal arts courses. You were likely asked to write a comparison that features Hamlet at some point, or will be in the future.

However, the breadth and variety of the topics tends to be overwhelming. It can be challenging to summarize the various national and periodic traditions concisely and similarly.

In many cases, you will be unable to do so, as literature can vary widely, particularly across genres. However, you can improve your literature paper and achieve an excellent result by following several tips.

First of all, you should decide on the presentation you will employ in the work. You can separate the paper by topics and compare the two traditions side by side. This structure is best if you have definite ideas about parallels you can draw between them.

However, if you do not find any points of reference the information you have, you can still complete the essay. In such a case, you should divide the body of the paper into two sections, with each providing an overview of a period.

These considerations may help in your writing process:

  • Try to use titles that identify the topic clearly, such as “French Romantic Fiction.”
  • Try to connect every broad statement you make to the thesis. This structure will make your essay coherent and well-organized.
  • Do not be afraid to voice an original idea that you cannot support with evidence. The purpose of a critical essay is to help you develop a unique view.

You can find a selection of comparative literature topics, comparative literature essay prompts, and comparative literature essay examples as well as other useful samples at IvyPanda.

Denial in “Everyday Use” and “Jilting of Granny Weatherall”

Denial is an aspect of not complying with or failure to satisfy a request, which is portrayed well by the characters of Everyday Use and Jilting of Granny Weatherall. The former is about heritage where a black family fails to accept their twin state as African-Americans and end up choosing either African or American heritage. […]

Comparison Between the Two Stories “Kitchen” and “Spirited World”

Mikage, a young girl in Banana’s story “Kitchen” is the main actor and many situations revolve around her. Her predicaments are brought out in simple and understandable situations. Having been left alone by the only last relative she had, her life seems to be filled with grief (Dorson 54). The death of her grandmother has […]

Comparison and Contrast of two plays: “Comedy of errors” by William Shakespeare and “Oedipus the King” by Sophocles

The literary work is a reflection of what is happening in the society. Authors normally voice their opinions about issues affecting the society through various themes. These themes are closely linked together through analysis of a character’s actions. In the contemporary society, introduction of literature research has extensively increased the volume of literature in every […]

Immigrant Experience in “Brooklyn” and “Instructions to All Persons” Books

People have differing reasons as to what may make them relocate from one place to another. Majority of the immigrants arrive at decisions to move to foreign lands in search of better opportunities, in terms of education and better employment terms amongst other reasons. During this process of movement, people have the capacity to transfer […]

A Comparison of “Paycheck” and the film adopted from it

The 36 paged short story book written by Philip Kindred Dick, “Paycheck” explores political, social, and metaphysical fiction genre. Drawn from his personal experiences, this book reveals the rot of the society as contributed by the themes of monopolistic corporation, misery, twin-self, paranoia, altered states, and authoritarian administration. This paper examines the differences that lies […]

Similarities and differences of The Book of Dede korkut and Layla and majnun

There are several similarities and differences between the two stories; ‘How Basat killed Goggle-eye,’ and the story of ‘Layla and Majnun.’ This essay will focus on the similarities and differences in these stories. Focus will be on the theme of religion which is evident in the two stories. The essay focuses on the Islamic background […]

Anna Karenina and Madame Bovary

Literary realism refers to a style that faithfully portrays life and interprets the actualities of all the aspects of reality. The literary style emerged as a reaction to the clouded literary conventions, misplaced esthetic glorification, and excessive beautification of the universe presented by romanticism. As a literary technique, realism stands out from the other styles […]

Perception of Satire in Gulliver’s Travels, The Tempest, and Diderot’s

Nowadays, it became a commonplace practice among many people to refer to the play The Tempest (by William Shakespeare), the essay Supplement to the Voyage of Bougainville (by Denis Didrot) and the novel Gulliver’s Travels (by Jonathan Swift), as such that represent a particularly high literary value. The main reason for this is that, in […]

Animals as Symbols of the Human Behaviour

Introduction Non-human creatures are interesting, especially when playwrights and filmmakers deploy them to represent human characters. The use of animals is common in literature materials, especially those that target youngsters. These writings offer amusement and moral lessons to their readers. Such lessons are important in terms of boostingthe readers’ maturation and/or highlightingways of tackling various […]

Mythologizing Place and Self in Poetry by Robert Kroetsch and Birk Sproxton

Introduction Robert Kroetsch and Birk Sproxton are famous Canadian writers. Kroetsch was born in 1927 and died in 2011. He was one of the Canadian postmodernism novelists, poets, and non-fiction writers. Having been born in Alberta, he began his academic writing at Binghamton University. On the other hand, Sproxton was also a Canadian novelist and […]

Nothing Gold Can Stay vs. Because I could not stop for Death

Robert Frost’s poem “Nothing Gold Can Stay” and Emily Dickinson’s poem “Because I could not stop for Death,” abound in symbolism that depicts temporality of life. The time bound existence of all things is expressed through metaphoric symbolism in both the poems. Dickinson presents this idea of temporality by personifying Death as a guard of […]

The Handmaid’s Tale vs. The Country Between Us

Introduction The destructive aspects of totalitarian regimes attracted the attention of many writers during the Cold War era. One of the main issues that they explored was the state oppression of an individual who could eventually become alienated and dehumanized. Such themes as loneliness, control, and confinement occupy a prominent place in the novels and […]

Dostoevsky’s The Brothers Karamazov & Camus’ story The Guest

The introduction: the fundamentals of the stories The basic theme of Dostoevsky’s production The Grand Inquisitor is the Catholic Inquisition over the Protestants. The Brothers Karamazov represents two opposite sides: one of the brothers Ivan is anti-religion, while another one – Alyosha believes in a superhuman controlling power. Geoff Uyleman states: The chapter The Grand […]

Comparative Of A Widow For One Year And The Cider House Rules

Introduction John Irving’s stories “A Widow for One Year” and “The Cider House Rules” are similar in a number of ways. These major similarities are evident through the characters of Homer Wells and Ruth Cole. Despite the stories having differences in terms of setting, the plots and other aspects, the characters of Homer Wells and […]

William Shakespeare “Romeo and Juliet” and “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”

Introduction William Shakespeare in “Romeo and Juliet” and “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” present tragic love stories. Although these two plays tell the stories of profound love, immense pain and suffering seems to be customary. In “Romeo and Juliet” there is an unending row between two families, Montague and Capulet (Shakespeare 5). The main plot of […]

Shakespeare “Richard II” and “Henry IV”

Introduction Historical reports indicate that Kings, like the Pharaohs of ancient Egypt claimed to be gods or at least descended from them. Due to this fact many a time their coronation ceremonies were for the primary intention of demonstrating divine approval of their ascension to the throne (Cannon, Cannon and Hargreaves 2009). This doctrine was […]

Comparison between the two poems:”Corrina’s Going A-May” and “To His Coy Mistress”

Introduction The main style of narration exhibited in the two poems is persuasion. In the poem “Corrina’s Going A-May” the persona coaxes his beloved, Corrina, to go forth and enjoy the delights of the chilly morning as other young people usually do. He is wooing his lover to accept his call. We do not get […]

The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid by C.K Prahalad: A Book Review

Introduction The term “the bottom of the pyramid” has gained prominence in the field of economics in recent past. As a concept, it is used to refer to the “largest, (but) poorest socio-economic” class at the bottom of the hypothetical pyramid used in economics to depict resource distribution (Gunther 9). Estimates of the number of […]

Philosophy in Crisis: The Need for Reconstruction. Book Review

Introduction Philosophers are known to be a breed of thinkers who tend to ask critical questions regarding the world within which we live. They are known to be critical perceivers, seldom taking anything at face value. Philosophers may be engrossed in criticizing and reviewing the world outside their academic realm. They are known to critically […]

Popularity of Utopian/Dystopian Young Adult Literature

The utopia in addition to its derivative, the dystopia, is types of literature that explore both social and political configurations. Utopian literature explores or tackles the aspects of creating ideal humanity, or utopia as the general setting of the narrative. Dystopian is the contrary: invention or creation of a atrocious civilization, or dystopia. Typically, most […]

Comparative Literature for Robert Browning and Elizabeth Barrett Browning

Introduction Robert Browning and Elizabeth Barrett Browning were two great writers of the 19th century. One cannot get a better understanding of one of these writers without looking at the works of the other. This is because the life and works of these two writers are connected. These two were united in what was regarded […]

Compare and Contrast Shakespeare’s Othello and the Blind Owl by Sedayat

Shakespeare’s Othello and the Blind Owl by Sedayat can be compared and contrasted in several ways. For instance, it is evident that the characters and plots in the two books are different. Also, some themes such as, love, gender culture and murder are common in both works. However, The Blind Owl includes suicidal incidences, which […]

Sonnets 29 and 73 by Shakespeare

One of the reasons why the sonnets of William Shakespeare are being often referred to, as such, that represent a particularly high literary/philosophical value, is that the themes and motives, contained in them, reflect the actual essence of people’s foremost existential anxieties (Edmonson and Wells 212). This could not be otherwise, because by being exposed […]

“8 Is Not Hate: The Meaning of a Proposition” and “Prop 8 Hurt My Family—Ask Me How; Marriage Equality USA”

The modern day and age offers rights and freedoms that people have not experienced some time before and the majority of official rulings have acknowledged that people have a right to marry whomever they want, as it is their personal and private choice. While both authors address the issue of Proposition 8 and challenges that […]

What Does It Mean to Be Human? What Are the Ethical and Social Implications of This Definition?

For ages, philosophers, poets, novelists, dramatists, and several literati have attempted to device their own definition of humanism and what it means to be human. The humanism of sixteenth century defined it to be the process of learning, discourse, and reasoning. Poets during the Elizabethan renaissance have created extraordinary, thought provoking works that explores human […]

What Does It Mean to Be Human? What Are the Ethical and Social Implications of This Definition?

Admittedly, poets have always tried to answer very complicated questions in their works. One of the most difficult questions is, of course, what it is to be a human. Poets of the sixteenth century had their own vision. It is possible to analyze such works as Amoretti (Sonnets 54 and 75) by Edmund Spenser, Astrophil […]

Reflecting the Concept of Social Rank in Courtly Texts: Methods and Strategies.

Analysis Defining the specifics of social relationships and analyzing the principles in accordance with which these relationships develop is, perhaps, one of the most complicated tasks for a writer of courtly texts. Because of a large variety of factors, starting with the complexity of the leadership model adopted by the head of the state, up […]

Stream-Of-Consciousness Technique: Joyce’s “The Dead” and Conrad’s “Heart of Darkness”

Introduction Stream of consciousness is a flow of ideas and images without any particular order. Sang discusses that stream of consciousness is “composed of the continual activity of the characters’ consciousness and shower of impressions” (173). Stream of consciousness is associated with direct and indirect interior monologue. Direct interior monologue includes the characters unuttered thoughts […]

Race and Ethnicity in Nadine Gordimer and Patricia Smith Poems

Introduction Racism and ethnicity have been critical issues in the society with several blacks and non-whites suffering prejudice in some European countries. Since the world came to acknowledge these antisocial practices as core perpetrators to global social justice, research and social studies have considered the two issues as part of the most important aspects to […]

“Thoughts from Underground” and “Introduction: Roughing it in the Bush” Comparison

Comparison of the Two Poems and representation of Canada Margret Atwood’s poetry work revolves around representative literature. She portrays Canada during the 19th century. In her work, ‘Thoughts from Underground’, she portrays the challenges and the perception that different people had of Canada. The poem revolves around the country’s political and social organization. Moodie’s book, […]

Narayan’s and Rushdie’s Perspectives Regarding Hybrid Identity

The movement of people from one place to another has raised certain concerns in almost all aspects of life. This phenomenon has been evident in literature especially Indian literature. An individual’s interaction with his/her immediate environment at any given time affects their beliefs. It also shapes the individual’s preferences in life as far as identity […]