Can You Use I in an Analysis Essay: Exploring the Role of Subjectivity

Can You Use I in an Analysis Essay: Exploring the Role of Subjectivity

Subjectivity is often seen as a taboo when it comes to academic writing. Traditional analysis essays have typically required a detached, impersonal tone, leaving out any first-person perspective. However, as the academic community evolves and more diverse voices are being recognized, the question arises: can we incorporate our own subjective experiences and perspectives into analysis essays?

At first glance, it may seem that using “I” in an analysis essay is a deviation from the norm. The emphasis has always been on objectivity and supporting arguments with concrete evidence. Yet, when we delve deeper into the subject, we find that there are instances where expressing one’s subjective point of view can actually enhance the analysis.

When analyzing a text or any other medium, it’s essential to stay focused on the main objectives of the analysis, while also considering the impact of subjectivity. An excellent example of this can be found in Weschler’s “Mr. Wilson’s Cabinet of Wonder,” where he seamlessly incorporates his own experiences and ideas while analyzing the subject. Without the contribution of his subjective observations and thoughts, the analysis would be limited in its ability to inspire and engage readers.

Integrating the personal into analysis essays can be done without succumbing to wordiness or excessive self-indulgence. By limiting the use of personal pronouns and ensuring each inclusion serves a significant purpose in supporting the central argument, the subjective aspects can add depth and authenticity to the analysis. The key is to strike a balance between creating a compelling analysis and maintaining the critical distance necessary for academic writing.

So, while the prevailing notion of analysis essays may discourage the use of first-person pronouns, it is evident that incorporating subjectivity can actually be a valuable and necessary part of the writing process. By organizing and presenting our thoughts in a clear and concise manner, we can create analysis essays that are both informative and authentic, allowing readers to engage with the content on a more personal level.

Understanding the Importance of Perspective in Analysis Essays

Analysis essays are then truly not just about the writer’s viewpoint, but also about the perspectives of others that are thrown into the mix. Just like Shakespeare’s plays, analysis essays can be seen as a significant piece of work that is not complete without taking into account different viewpoints and arguments.

When analyzing a subject, it is vital to arrive at a well-rounded understanding, which is not possible without considering multiple perspectives. It is like going to a museum and only focusing on one exhibit, or watching a movie trailer and assuming the ending without watching the whole film.

Understanding different perspectives requires skill and the ability to see beyond one’s own viewpoint. It is akin to sitting in a theater and realizing that the performance is not just about what is happening on stage, but also about the reactions of the audience.

In an analysis essay, the importance of perspective is not just limited to the viewpoints of the writer and the subject being analyzed. Instead, it extends to the wider community, the responses of readers, and the institutional context in which the essay is being written.

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By considering different perspectives, an analysis essay can provide a more holistic and comprehensive understanding of the subject at hand. It won’t just be about presenting a single argument, but also about taking into account the various viewpoints that exist around the topic.

Furthermore, analysis essays inspire critical thinking and encourage readers to look beyond surface-level interpretations. By focusing on different perspectives, analysis essays challenge the reader to question their own assumptions and biases, thus fostering intellectual growth.

Expanding the Scope: From Student Papers to Real-World Context

While analysis essays are often associated with student assignments, their significance goes beyond the four walls of academia. The skill to analyze different perspectives is invaluable in the real world as well.

Whether it is understanding the motivations behind societal issues or evaluating the effectiveness of policies, the ability to analyze different perspectives allows individuals to make informed decisions and contribute to meaningful change.

For example, when analyzing complex issues like climate change or political ideologies, it is essential to consider a range of viewpoints from different experts, stakeholders, and generations. This expansive analysis is crucial for developing well-rounded opinions and strategies for addressing these challenges.

Subjectivity in Analysis Essays: A Catalyst for Originality

While subjectivity and perspectives are crucial in analysis essays, it is important to strike a balance. Analysis essays should not simply be a regurgitation of individual opinions or personal biases; they should be grounded in evidence and supported by logical reasoning.

However, the inclusion of different perspectives can bring a sense of originality and freshness to the analysis. By considering multiple viewpoints, analysis essays have the potential to offer unique insights and challenge conventional narratives.

The Role of First Person Pronouns in Analysis Writing

When a writer begins an analysis essay, it is about presenting an argument or exploring a particular topic. Using the first person pronoun can help to establish a personal connection between the writer and the reader, allowing the writer to express their thoughts, feelings, and insights more effectively.

For example, when analyzing a film, a writer can use first person pronouns to describe their initial thoughts and reactions about the movie. They can share how they felt when they first discovered the film and how it helped to develop their appreciation for the genre. This personal touch can create a more engaging and relatable analysis for the reader.


Examining the Boundaries of Objectivity and Subjectivity

When analyzing a text or event, it is impossible to completely remove oneself from the equation. Our personal perspectives, experiences, and biases shape how we perceive and interpret information. Understanding this inherent subjectivity is crucial in order to critically evaluate and engage with the material.

For example, let’s consider a hypothetical scenario where a writer is analyzing the character of Ophelia in Shakespeare’s play “Hamlet.” The writer, a middle-aged man with a wife and son, might find himself drawn to Ophelia’s plight as a young woman who is pressured by societal expectations and ultimately meets a tragic end. His analysis might be influenced by his own experiences with gender roles and family dynamics.

In this case, the use of “I” in the analysis essay could be justified, as it allows the writer to reflect on his personal perspective and its impact on his interpretation of the text. By acknowledging and discussing his own biases, the writer demonstrates an understanding of the complex interplay between subjectivity and objectivity.

However, it’s important to note that the use of “I” should not overshadow the main arguments and analysis presented in the essay. The writer’s personal experiences and perspectives should support and enhance the overall analysis, rather than becoming the focus of the essay.

To ensure a thorough and effective analysis essay, the writer should take precautions to maintain a balance between objectivity and subjectivity. This includes conducting extensive research, consulting multiple sources, and considering alternative perspectives. By doing so, the writer can expand their understanding of the topic and present a more nuanced analysis.

Throughout the drafting process, multiple revisions and edits should be made to ensure coherence and clarity. The scattered thoughts must be organized into well-structured paragraphs and the arguments must be supported by evidence from the text or relevant sources.

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Moreover, the writer must always keep in mind the intended audience and purpose of the essay. While some essays may allow for a more personal and subjective approach, others may require a more formal and objective tone.

Pros and Cons of Using First Person Perspective in Analysis Essays


1. Personal Insight: One of the main advantages of using first person perspective is gaining the ability to share personal insights and experiences. By using “I” or “we” pronouns, the writer can provide a subjective viewpoint and share their own thoughts and feelings about the analyzed subject. This can add depth and authenticity to the essay.

2. Engaging the Reader: Including personal experiences and reflections can make the analysis essay more relatable and engaging for the reader. It allows them to connect with the writer on a deeper level and fosters a sense of empathy and understanding.

3. Drawing from Personal Knowledge: Using the first person perspective enables the writer to draw from their personal knowledge and experiences. This can provide a unique and fresh perspective that goes beyond what can be found in academic readings or community discussions.


1. Subjectivity: The use of first person perspective introduces subjectivity into the analysis essay. While subjectivity can be valuable in certain contexts, it can also overshadow the objective analysis of the subject matter. It is important to strike a balance between personal insights and objective analysis.

2. Credibility: Some readers may question the credibility of the analysis if the essay is filled with personal anecdotes and subjective opinions. It is essential to support statements with concrete evidence and logical reasoning to maintain the credibility of the analysis.

3. Misleading Generalizations: When using first person perspective, there is a risk of making misleading generalizations based on personal experiences. An analysis essay should go beyond individual experiences and consider a wide range of perspectives to provide a comprehensive and accurate argument.

Developing a Strong Analytical Voice without Using First Person Pronouns

Expressing Originality and Thought

While avoiding first person pronouns, it is still crucial for an analysis essay to express originality and critical thought. This can be achieved by presenting unique perspectives and offering insightful interpretations of the subject matter. By employing a well-developed analytical voice, the writer can demonstrate their understanding of the topic and provide significant analysis without relying on personal experiences or opinions.

When it comes to expressing originality in an analytical essay, one helpful trick is to provide examples and evidence from different sources. For instance, instead of simply stating that a work of art is “amazing,” the writer can delve into specific aspects that make it impressive or inspiring. By focusing on particular details and analyzing their significance, the writer can showcase their analytical skills and provide a more nuanced argument.

Establishing Logical Organization and Clarity

In the absence of first person pronouns, it is essential to establish logical organization and clarity in an analysis essay. This includes using clear topic sentences, effective transitions, and well-structured paragraphs. By doing so, the writer can guide the reader through their line of thought and ensure that the analysis is easy to follow.

Critical Analysis

When analyzing a text or a piece of media, it is crucial to keep a critical perspective in mind. The role of subjectivity in critical analysis can be challenging to navigate. Students often wonder whether they should keep their personal thoughts and opinions separate from their critical analysis. The answer is that while it is important to maintain a critical mindset, it is acceptable to incorporate personal insights as long as they contribute to the overall analysis.

One major challenge in critical analysis is distinguishing between a personal opinion and an analytical observation. It can be difficult to separate one’s thoughts and feelings from the objective analysis of the text. However, it is essential to strive for an impartial perspective by focusing on the evidence provided in the text and using analytical tools to support one’s arguments.

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When writing a critical analysis essay or any other form of academic writing, it is essential to structure the body paragraphs with clear topic sentences, supporting evidence, and insightful analysis. Each paragraph should present a distinct idea or argument and should be interconnected throughout the essay. By organizing the analysis effectively, the reader can follow your thought process and understand the points you are making.

One way to enhance your critical analysis is by providing specific examples from the text or media you are analyzing. These examples can help illustrate your points and provide clarity to the reader. By analyzing these examples in detail, you can showcase your understanding of the subject matter and provide insight that may have been overlooked by other readers or viewers.

It is important to note that critical analysis should not ignore the overall context of the text or media being analyzed. Understanding the historical, societal, and institutional factors that influenced the creation of the work can provide valuable insight and contribute to a more comprehensive analysis.

What is Critical Analysis and Why is it Important?

In an analysis essay, the writer hasn’t been provided with a clear meaning yet. Instead, they must search for it on their own. It’s like solving a puzzle, where the pieces are scattered throughout the text and the writer must assemble them to create a coherent interpretation.

One important aspect of critical analysis is the inclusion of the writer’s own perspective and subjectivity. While some essays may insist on using a third-person style, allowing the first-person perspective can add a personal touch and make the analysis more relatable to the audience.

At first, it may seem strange to use “I” in an analytical essay, as traditional academic writing tends to prioritize objectivity. However, by acknowledging the writer’s presence, it creates a more engaging experience for the reader. By sharing their thoughts and insights, the writer can guide the reader through the analysis process, pointing out the most important points, and providing examples that support their interpretation.


Can I use the pronoun “I” in an analysis essay?

Yes, you can use the pronoun “I” in an analysis essay. However, it is important to use it sparingly and only when necessary to express your own perspective or personal experience related to the topic. The focus of an analysis essay should primarily be on objective analysis and interpretation of the subject matter.

How can I maintain objective perspective in an analysis essay?

To maintain an objective perspective in an analysis essay, you should focus on providing evidence, facts, and logical reasoning to support your analysis. Avoid using emotional language or personal opinions without providing substantial evidence. Additionally, it can be helpful to gather different perspectives on the topic and consider alternative interpretations to ensure a balanced and unbiased approach.

Should I completely eliminate personal subjectivity in my analysis essay?

No, it is not necessary to completely eliminate personal subjectivity in your analysis essay. While the emphasis should be on objective analysis, including some subjective elements can add depth and personal insight to your essay. Just ensure that you clearly distinguish between objective analysis and your subjective perspective by providing evidence and reasoning to support your claims.

Is it possible to edit an analysis essay to remove subjective language?

Yes, it is possible to edit an analysis essay to remove subjective language. When editing, carefully review your essay for any words or phrases that express personal bias or opinions without substantial evidence. Replace such language with objective and evidence-based statements. It can also be helpful to have someone else review your essay to provide an outside perspective and identify any subjective language that may have been overlooked.

What is the significance of maintaining objectivity in an analysis essay?

Maintaining objectivity in an analysis essay is significant because it allows for a more accurate and credible analysis. Objective analysis is based on evidence, logical reasoning, and a comprehensive understanding of the subject matter. By presenting an objective perspective, you increase the validity and reliability of your analysis, making it more convincing to your readers.

Can I use personal pronouns like “I” in an analysis essay?

Yes, you can use personal pronouns like “I” in an analysis essay, but it is important to use them judiciously and only when they add value to your analysis. Using personal pronouns can help to convey your perspective and make your essay more subjective.

How can I effectively use personal pronouns in an analysis essay?

When using personal pronouns in an analysis essay, it is important to be mindful of their usage. Make sure to provide sufficient evidence and analysis to back up your opinions and avoid using personal pronouns excessively. By using personal pronouns strategically, you can effectively convey your perspective and make your essay more engaging.

Alex Koliada, PhD

By Alex Koliada, PhD

Alex Koliada, PhD, is a well-known doctor. He is famous for studying aging, genetics, and other medical conditions. He works at the Institute of Food Biotechnology and Genomics. His scientific research has been published in the most reputable international magazines. Alex holds a BA in English and Comparative Literature from the University of Southern California, and a TEFL certification from The Boston Language Institute.