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Definition

In the essays below, you should know the  subject thoroughly since the writers have composed extended definitions. You can learn to write a definition essay here and here.

All writers in this collection speak for themselves—and themselves alone.

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Bad Dog

Writer Rachel Maizes recounts life with Chance, her often aggressive, mixed-breed dog.

Definition Humans and Their Animals First Person Discussion Questions & Writing PromptsConnect with Author

Catfish Culture: How MTV’s Reality Show Is Leaching into Pop Culture (and Reality)

Writer Libby Hill examines television, namely period dramas like The Americans and Masters of Sex, and concludes that the identities people assume in life are both true and false.

Definition Identity Mixed Person Discussion Questions & Writing PromptsConnect with Author

Crazy Cat Ladies

Kiri Blakeley, a contributor to Forbes magazine, defines the modern cat lady by exploring the connection women (and some men) have with cats.

Definition Humans and Their Animals Third Person Discussion Questions & Writing PromptsConnect with Author

Facebook: The New Meaning of "Friend"

Writer Val Brown shares her own take on how Facebook has redefined the word "friend."

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A Fiesta Fit for a Princess — for Those Willing to Pay

Los Angeles Times reporter Marisa Gerber describes how the traditional quinceanera has evolved over the past 40 years.

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Gross Domestic Nonsense

Therapist and minister Wayne Muller seeks to define on a personal level what the economic concept of GDP is.

Definition Modern Challenges Mixed Person Discussion Questions & Writing PromptsConnect with Author

I'm a Cat Lady? Thank You

Stephanie Butnik, writing for the New York Times, tries to dispel the myth that cat people are crazy by defining the "new" cat owner.

Definition • Humans and Their Animals • First Person • Discussion Questions & Writing PromptsConnect with Author

The Modern Kennel Conundrum

Jon Mooallem, a writer for the New York Times, investigates the "designer" dog fad which has created Labradoodles and puggles.

Definition Humans and Their Animals Mixed Person Discussion Questions & Writing PromptsConnect with Author

Shut up and Eat

Author John Lanchester explains how our idea of food and what "food" means has changed.

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Training for the End of the World as We Know It

Writing for the Atlantic, Jessica Leigh Hester investigates the world of preppers, those folks preparing for the end of the world.

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Ultimate Frisbee’s Surprising Arrival as a Likely Olympic Sport

What is ultimate frisbee? In this article, author Charles Bethea explains the sport and why its players believe it belongs at the Olympics

DefinitionSport Third Person Discussion Questions & Writing PromptsConnect with Author