The essay is a comparative analysis of Lera Boroditsky: How Does Our Language Shape the Way We Think? (Jerskey 135-143) and Stephen Pax Leonard: Death by Monoculture (Jerskey 145-148).

The writer does an excellent job of juxtaposing and drawing connections between the two texts. Not only does she examine the two texts insightfully and draw comparisons between them, but she also metacognitively questions the action of comparing the two texts.

Here are some of the elements that make the piece a well-written, persuasive comparison essay:

Title: In Defense of Linguistic Diversity: Globalization of Languages Implies Identical Thinking

The title of the essay signals the writer’s main argument based on a careful comparison of the two texts.

Introduction and Argument:
The essay starts with a ‘hook’ sentence: “Vivid, vibrant, rich, complex and simply fascinating, language is our primary means to communicate and connect” that sets the stage and draws the reader into the arguments of the essay.

The first paragraph in the paper refers to both texts (titles, names of authors and brief summaries) and contains a thesis/claim. The writer makes the argument that since Boroditsky concludes that languages shape the way we think, the globalization of languages, as outlined by Leonard, will lead to “a uniform way of thinking”.

The writer makes several specific points of comparison between the texts and explains the insight gained from putting the two texts together. For example:

  • While Boroditsky reports her research results in her essay, Leonard takes a position based on his personal encounters with language change.
  • While Leonard argues that the world is moving towards a monoculture because we are speaking fewer and fewer languages, Boroditsky’s argument that language shapes the way we think supports Leonard’s warning of the impending monoculture.

Logical Development:
The body paragraphs of the essay are clearly focused on a specific reason that supports the  claim. Topic sentences signal the arguments in each body paragraph. There are transition words and phrases such as “while”, “however”, and “of course, one might wonder if..”

The central focus of each paragraph is supported with evidence (quotes, paraphrases from the essays). The writer uses ‘quote sandwiches’ by providing the context that leads to the quote and engaging with the quote before moving on.

The writer metacognitively questions the action of comparing the two texts. While metacognition is not required for this essay, it is an indicator of the writer’s growth as a writer and a thinker.

The conclusion restates the writer’s claim, but also expands the writer’s ideas further and/or suggests some questions for further consideration or research. The writer does a good job of looking outwards from the essay and drawing connections with larger issues related to language and culture.


Boroditsky, Lera. “How Does Our Language Shape the Way We Think?” Globalization: A Reader for Writers. Ed. Maria Jerskey. New York, Oxford University Press, 2014. 135–143.

Jerskey, Maria. Ed. Globalization: A Reader for Writers. New York, Oxford University Press, 2014.

Leonard, Stephen Pax. “Death by Monoculture.” Globalization: A Reader for Writers. Ed. Maria Jerskey. New York, Oxford University Press, 2014. 145–148.

WR 112: Academic Writing for ESL Students 2