The authors of these pieces are using their own personal experience as evidence. To tell what they know, they use first-person pronouns: I, me, my, mine and myself or we, us, our, ours, ourselves.
All writers in this collection speak for themselves—and themselves alone.
Writer Rachel Maizes recounts life with Chance, her often aggressive, mixed breed dog.
Emily Yoffe, Slate's "Dear Prudie" and a reformed beagle owner, explains why these headstrong little monsters might not be the best choice for a first-time dog owner.
Lena Dunham, creator and star of the HBO series Girls, chronicles the dogs that she has pursued as pets.
Cheating in College [Video]
YouTube vlogger sWooZie describes what happened after he spotted two friends cheating on a humanities exam.
Novelist Edwidge Danticat describes a meal that she will never forget.
Naturalist Sy Montgomery gets in the mind of an octopus and is amazed not only at what she finds but also at the existing research on these intelligent creatures.
This brief memoir examines the conflict within a family when an economic reality crashes into a cultural value. Writer Jiayang Fan tries to understand why her parents accused her of a family "crime" that she did not commit and did not understand.
David Pargman, professor emeritus at Florida State University, gives his reasons why athletes should study sports, their real focus in college.
Writer Alexandra Owens describes how she discovered international cuisine by visiting EPCOT's World Showcase in Walt Disney World.
Writer Val Brown shares her own take on how Facebook has redefined the word "friend."
Writer James Baldwin argues for human rights, using history to compare blacks/whites, southerners/northerners, and the haves/have-nots.
Timothy Braun, a writer and teacher, describes how his life changed after rescuing Dusty, a shelter dog on death row.
Essayist Jo Ann Beard recounts a workplace shooting.
Freelance author James Sollisch explains the nature of critical thinking by giving examples of people who shifted old paradigms.
Candy Crowley, a CNN reporter and devoted dog person, explains how two cats changed her opinion of felines.
Match.com and PetFinder.org want to help people find their perfect companion. Susan Hogan, a writer and teacher, describes her experiences using these two websites.
Scott Adams, the creator of the Dilbert comic strip, explains how he got the most out of his college education and offers advice to students now enrolled.
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CEO Kyle Wiens explains the correlation between someone's grammar competence and that person's readiness for professional life.
Stephanie Butnik, writing for the New York Times, tries to dispel the myth that cat people are crazy by defining the "new" cat owner.
Actor Arthur Chu describes his history as a gamer to show his understanding of and anger at the Gamergate community.
Steve Almond, writing for the New York Times, believes that fans must admit that they are complicit in the brain-damaged players that football produces.
Former Miami Herald Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist Dave Barry finally gets a colonoscopy (and we all get to read about it).
Essayist David Sedaris describes a flight to Paris in which he takes advantage of first-class seating, meets a grieving man, and wonders about the genuineness of people, including himself.
Harvard professor of divinity Harvey Cox takes a theological approach to understanding the business world.
Although foodie Claire Berger entertains the idea of dating men, in this essay she explains that her current relationship is with food.
Novelist Teddy Wayne recounts a plagiarism episode and the lesson that he eventually learned from it.
Farhad Manjoo, a technology columnist, argues that people deserve some dog-free zones.
Abraham Cowley, a seventeenth-century poet, explores the vanity of human wishes and makes some proposals about how we should live.
In this nineteeth century essay, writer William Hazlitt argues that hatred of others is at bottom hatred of self.
Author Tiphanie Yanique describes Vega Baja, Puerto Rico, the place where her grandmother was raised.
Writer Abby Sher, a 40-year-old mother, writes about her young daughter learning to deal with death.
John Kaag, a professor of philosophy and expository writing, explains how his mother's constant and consistent criticisms of his essays affected his writing.
Same Love [Video]
In the video for the song "Same Love," hip hop duo Macklemore and Ryan Lewis argue for marriage equality.
Author John Lanchester explains how our idea of food and what "food" means has changed.
George Orwell, best known for the novels 1984 and Animal Farm, recounts his experiences at St. Cyprian's, an English preparatory school for boys.
Judith Newman, Gus's mother, movingly demonstrates that modern interactions via technology aren't all bad.
Michel de Montaigne, writing in the seventeenth century, expands upon eros and marriage and other human problems.
Novelist Tim O'Brien, a Vietnam veteran, explores war, love, history, depression, and loss.
Tomoyuki Iwashita, once employed in a "dream" job, examines the effects of his working for a traditional, demanding Japanese company.
Transcendentalist Henry David Thoreau describes the animals that he encounters during his two-year-long experiment of living a simple life in nature.
Noah Michelson, Executive Editor of the Huffington Post's Gay Voices, argues that homosexuals, especially homosexual celebrities, have a responsibility to come out publicly.
In the process of giving up her child for adoption, Leigh Anne Tani reflects on her own adoption into a family.