Analogies

This video defines analogies. What makes an analogy different from a metaphor? How can analogies help strengthen an essay?

LanguageEnglish Language
LiterarySymbolism, Allegory, Allusions
Literary TopicsSpecial Interest
WritingLiterary Devices

Transcript

00:18

Anyone still awake out there? Thank goodness for analogies.

00:22

Analogies are tools we use help a reader envision or understand what we’re talking about… [Definition of analogy appears]

00:28

…by comparing something to…something else, and making it relatable.

00:33

The girl was as angry as a penned-up animal that hadn’t eaten for days. [Girl angry outside a gate]

00:38

The man’s love for his wife was as boundless as the vast expanse of space.

00:44

My stomach is as full as a helium balloon just before it pops.

00:49

A little more interesting, right?

00:52

But hold up… aren’t these just examples of metaphors?

00:55

Hey, good catch. Metaphors…

00:58

…are really just simple figures of speech…while analogies are more in-depth comparisons that

01:05

indicate more of a direct relationship between two things.

01:10

Which can come in handy if, for example, you need help getting your point across when making [Essay on sheet of paper appears]

01:13

an argument in an essay.

01:16

Your reader may not really get how quickly the polar icecaps are melting… [Polar bear in it's cave]

01:19

…but if you make an analogy comparing it to how quickly they melted at the end of the

01:23

last glacial period…

01:25

…you may get your reader to sit up, pay attention…and maybe stop spraying their [Man throws aerosol bottles in the park]

01:29

aerosol can into the air.

01:32

Maybe you’re making the claim that Franklin Piece was one of the greatest U.S. Presidents…

01:36

…well, you can really drive the point home by making an analogy between Pierce’s accomplishments

01:40

and Lincoln’s. Although…you may have to get a little creative there. [Lincoln and Pierce paintings on a wall]

01:46

Or you could be trying to convince your reader that soccer is about to experience an increase

01:51

in popularity in the U.S.

01:54

What better way than to draw an analogy, perhaps by drawing a connection to baseball’s surge

01:59

in the late 19th century?

02:01

There are also extended analogies, which are like regular analogies, only…extended. [Hand stretching analogies]

02:07

They might go on for lines, or even paragraphs…

02:10

…comparing fear to a cockroach…

02:12

…or faith to an elephant…

02:14

…or…well, really any two things you can draw some type of elaborate parallel between.

02:19

Analogies aren’t ever necessary…but they do add life to your writing, and can often

02:24

bring some much needed clarity to an argumentative effort. [Skyline appears]

02:26

If you’re like us, and would do anything to win someone over to your way of thinking…

02:30

…analogies could be just what the doctor ordered. [Woman taking a pill]