Posted: December 1st, 2022

How to write a satirical essay and satirical essay topics

Do you feel the need to communicate a pressing issue about politics, celebrities, or absurd situations? A satirical essay comes in handy to deter the bad blood in this case. You get to communicate your feelings and persuade people but in a humorous way.

How to Write a Satirical Essay

A satirical essay serves the purpose of constructive social criticism. It uses wit to draw attention to particular and broader issues in your society. Unlike other types of academic writing, satiric essays allow you to voice your opinions on a thorny topic.

What is a satirical essay?

A satiric essay is a type of writing that uses satire to poke fun at or criticize a subject. You must use devices such as hyperbole and irony to get your point across. Satiric essays are often aimed at political bigwigs, celebrities, or absurd situations.

As a writer, you are supposed to seek and provide relevant, helpful, and eye-opening information within the scope of your essay. Learning  ‘how to write a satirical essay is easy once you grasp the techniques used for your content’s style and purpose.

Why do you use satire in a satiric essay?

Satire is a literal device used in writing. It’s the art of using humour, irony, exaggeration, or ridicule to expose vices or people’s stupidity. It’s chiefly used in the context of contemporary politics and other topical issues.

When you use satire in a satiric essay, you make someone look ridiculous; thus, embarrassing, humbling, or discrediting their vices or actions. The most common example of satire is the Political cartoons. The cartoon Family Guy, for instance, is an animated series whose aim is to ridicule the American middle-class society and conventions.

If you are stuck wondering, what is a satirical essay? You need to google the phrase satirical essay definition. Society will be made aware of issues and disparities that affect them through you. Writing a satiric essay calls attention to these issues, thus enlightening the reader, who probably was ignorant of it all.

What are the techniques used to achieve satire?

Satire is the most intellectual form of comedy that attempts to point out flaws of a given subject to influence the audience to act and maybe chuckle. It’s therefore achieved by

Identifying your goal

To use satire in your writing, confirm what you want to accomplish and understand your audience. For instance, if you are to tackle a political issue, what is funny to a liberal person might be insulting to a conservative person.

Being ironic

The most widely used satirical device in writing is all forms of irony. Irony is a tongue-in-cheek style that expresses a satirical essay topic idea but implies the opposite. Some of the types of irony include

  • Dramatic irony

Dramatic irony, also known as tragic irony, occurs when you let your reader know something that a character in your satiric essay doesn’t know. 

Comic irony

You use this type of irony to create a comedic effect as in satire. For instance, in the poem Building the nation by Henry Barlow, Lunch is called an important urgent function. This is very satirical. 

  • Situational irony

This type of irony is used only when the outcome is subverted. For instance, in Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare, Romeo attends the ball to see Rosaline, whom he thinks himself in love with, only to realize that whatever he feels for Rosaline is not love when he falls for Juliet.

  • Verbal irony

Verbal irony refers to a statement that you mean the opposite of what you are saying. For instance, in the Pardoner’s tale, his admittance to his hypocrisy and greed is a form of verbal irony within itself; he says, “Yes, I can preach against the vice of avarice that is my own device: for though I’m guilty of that very sin.”

Using extreme exaggeration

Authors commonly use exaggeration to create satire. This technique in a satiric essay presents something beyond what is normal to observe its faults. A good example is cartoons that often employ caricatures exaggerating a physical trait.

Making it ridiculous

You can point out the flaws of a given subject by using satire that absurdly represents them. Ridiculousness is achieved by the use of 

  • Anachronism- placing an idea or object at the wrong time
  • Malapropism- deliberately mispronouncing a word for comedic effect
  • Incongruent elements- they are juxtaposed to make something seem absurd in relation to its surroundings
  • Parody- imitation of a person or thing to mock the original
  • Travesty- presenting a serious subject in a silly manner
  • Burlesque- involves elevating something ridiculous or trivializing something important

Getting bitter

If you want to take a stab at a specific subject, use sarcasm as a technique of creating satire. Sarcasm is a sharp and wounding remark that shows intent to ridicule. Use this in your satirical essays to garner a big audience.

The tone of satire

Tone refers to the author’s attitude towards the subject matter. You should have an attitude towards your subject because every other author has. Different words or phrases show tone or attitude in writing.

Satire is a genre of literature in which the writer uses irony and criticism and a desire to see a change of society’s flaws. If you want your tone to be satirical, you must want to see reform and use a lot of irony in your satirical essay.

The most renowned types of satire are the Horatian satire which is light and humorous, and Juvenalian satire, which is dark and bitter. Other types of satire include 

  • Parody: This is a humorous imitation of a serious subject. 
  • Caricature:  This is a  humorous exaggeration of a person or group’s feature, quality, or characteristic. 
  • Burlesque talks about a serious subject in a trivial manner or an unimportant subject in a serious way.

The methodology used by authors to write satiric essays

 If you are writing satire or a satirical essay, you use the following procedures

  • Wit -This is a quick mind and great verbal skill. 
  • Sarcasm -This is a type of irony intended to insult and wound
  • Repartee -This is the ability to answer quickly with wit and sarcasm. 
  • Allusion – This is referring to something without directly mentioning it.
  • Understatement -is stating something and making it seem less important than it is.
  • Exaggeration – It’s achieved by overstating something; to make something seem more important than it is.

The five-minute rule of writing a satiric essay

Ironically, some satiric essays demand some level of irrelevance which is the highest-ranking form of humour. Satirical artists use it to speak and affect social or political change or prevent it. Satirical writing does not have to be necessarily funny. Still, from an example of a satirical essay, you will find that there is an extreme exaggeration as you try to drive the point home.

How to write a satirical essay

Satirical essays entertain readers; hence you must be well versed on the techniques of writing satirically. Here are some of the guidelines to a fantastic satiric essay

  1. Choose a topic

When choosing a topic for a satirical essay, it must be ironic and ridiculous. This is because you want to depict the absurdity of your subject. An artist exaggerates a caricature’s facial features, and so should you in your topic selection process.

  1. Use hyperbole to drive your point home.

Hyperbole, also known as exaggeration, is a literal device that overrates facts; while writing a satiric essay, you need to stick to facts but use hyperbole to highlight the absurdity behind those facts.

For instance, the song ‘To the moon and back,’ sung and authored by Savage Garden, has the following lyrics. 

“I would fly to the moon and back if you’ll be…
If you’ll be my baby
Got a ticket for a world where we belong
So would you be my baby?”

You know that the moon has an inhospitable environment for humans, right ? Celestial bodies have held a special allure for people in love since time immemorial. It doesn’t make sense for anyone to ‘fly to the moon and back ’ to get the other party to profess their love to you, but it has persuaded many people.

  1. Use irony to present your ideas

Irony is the use of phrases to express the opposite of what you truly mean. It also expresses a contradiction between what someone expects and what occurs. Irony is a fantastic tool in a satirical essay because of its sarcastic tone.

For instance, Oedipus the King is the best example of dramatic irony because the entire focus of the play is on Oedipus unknowingly condemning himself by demanding to know the truth about the murderer of the former king. The whole action of the play is built on the dramatic irony that the murderer Oedipus seeks is himself.

  1. Aim for humour in your satirical essay.

Satire isn’t wholly funny, but pointing out your topic’s ridiculous elements brings your readers to your way of thinking. At times it’s tricky for the reader to get the humour used; hence pointing it out in your satiric essay enhances their understanding.

How to create good satirical essay topics

The first step to writing a  good satirical essay is thinking about a topic. When selecting good satirical essay topics, you can choose to write about

  • Yourself
  • A person well known to you
  • Someone famous
  • Politicians
  • Unusual or weird facts

The best sources for satirical essay topics include.

  • Close to home

Writing a satirical essay about people and things you encounter daily can be a starting point for a good satirical essay topic

  • Satire of your school

Which part of your school deserves mockery? You can write about your school to express your satirical essay ideas with authorization. Of course, the topic will be a hit.

  • Satire of your family life

You might feel reluctant to write an essay mocking your own family, but how about mocking family life in general? You can zero on a specific topic like agreeing on family vacations as a target of your mockery.

  • Satire of a local scene

Do you have a local hangout that you think is a little silly? You can write a satirical essay focusing on that local joint’s aspects that make it look ridiculous.

  • Politics

Politics should be your inspiration if you are learning how to write a satiric essay. You are aware of politicians and political issues on local, national, and global levels; hence you can write about them without being offensive. The topic should be juicy.

  • Local readers

Writing a satirical essay about a local leader, such as a mayor, Congressperson, or city council member, involves carrying out some research. The research helps you understand the leader’s personality and politics, thus a learning experience.

  • President

Ever since the existence of presidential offices, presidents have been the satirist’s target. You can write satirical essays on a specific speech or event presided over by a commander in chief of the armed forces. Be careful and stay focused on your topic

  • Political debate

You can develop your satirical muscles by mocking political debates in local and nationals election years. Focus on the actual words people utter in the discussion and then show how they can be exaggerated and modified to maximize the satirical effect.

Examples of topics for a satirical essay

Here are some interesting categories of topics for a satirical essay.

Satirical essay topics on History 

  1. How did history play a role in society today?
  2. How World War II could have turned out differently
  3. What could have happened to us in case slavery was never abolished?
  4. Was Alexander the Great great?
  5. How did Adolf Hitler become the leader of a nation?
  6. The role of the royal family now and then
  7. The most significant events in history
  8. The best American world presidents

Political satirical essay topics

  1. Should we still be listening to politicians?
  2. Should the United States build a wall and Mexico is paying for it?
  3. Should abortion be legal?
  4. Are hidden handguns a concealed problem?
  5. Is the penalty of death a dying tradition?
  6. Should the voting age be lowered?

Satirical essay topics on sport 

  1. Who is tougher, football or rugby players?
  2. Is the world cup the biggest tournament on earth?
  3. Does anyone understand the off-side rule in football?
  4. Should there be ads on jerseys?
  5. What packs more of a punch, MMA, or boxing?
  6. Why not allow steroids in sports?
  7. Are athletes really our role models?

Social satirical essay topics

  1. Is it time for gun control?
  2. Is veganism a thing?
  3. Does our country have an obesity alert?
  4. Should healthcare be free to everyone?
  5. Should bhang be legalized?
  6. Why should euthanasia be legalized?
  7. How to keep up with slang as you get older
  8. The dullness of modern music 
  9. Gender preference: be whoever you want to be.
  10. Ten reasons why breastfeeding in public should be illegal
  11. Seven reasons why women should not get pregnant.
  12. Why is poverty not a third-world problem?

Satirical essay topics about love

  1. Does true love really exist?
  2. How to avoid coming across as weird on your first date.
  3. Do pick-up lines work, and when are you not to use them?
  4. If love is blind, why do we care so much?
  5. What would happen in a world without love?
  6. Is there an age limit in love?
  7. Can you love more than one person romantically?
  8. Love at first sight: truth or myth?

Satirical essay topics  on marriage

  1. The cost of an average wedding.
  2. Is forever a lie in the marriage vows?
  3. Questions you should ask before walking down the aisle.
  4. Why I won’t get married in a church.
  5. Is marriage worth it?

Satirical essay topics about money

  1. Is money really that important?
  2. Working hard doesn’t mean earning more money.
  3. Is money just a piece of paper?
  4. Is money better than copulation?
  5. Being broke isn’t so bad, is it?
  6. Would you rather cry in a Ferrari or a scooter?
  7. Is money the root of all evil?
  8. If money is the root of all evil, is being broke holy?

Media Satirical essay topics

  1. Is any publicity good publicity?
  2. Should we have censorship?
  3. Does privacy exist anymore?
  4. Does the media influence our thinking?
  5. Is there anything like a hoax in the news?

School satirical essay topics

  1. Do grades really matter?
  2. School dropouts make a good decision
  3. Things that the teachers don’t tell you
  4. Are uniforms really that important?
  5. Teachers enjoy giving assignments to their students
  6. Ways to flunk your exams

Satirical essay topics about Education 

  1. Are educated people the only wealthy people?
  2. Is education really the key to success?
  3. Environmental topics
  4. Do we really need the ozone layer?
  5. Is climate change a real deal?
  6. Recycling does make a big difference, doesn’t it?

 Examples of funny satirical essay topics

  1. Common first world problems
  2. Ready to cut down trees because we need a toothpick?
  3. New technology: guilty until proven innocent
  4. What women really want
  5. What your girlfriend says and what she means
  6. You are what you eat
  7. How eventually we turn into our parents
  8. Why does it take ages for women to get ready?
  9. Who teaches politicians to lie?
  10. How not to get bored at a family dinner
  11. How to eat a lot without gaining weight.
  12. Ways to escape visits to the dentist.
  13.  Why would shopping malls make perfect prisons?
  14. Do we even need to go to school?
  15. Top satirical essay writing tips
  16. How to persuade a child to eat healthily

How to introduce a satiric essay

If you want to bag in many readers, you must catch their attention by writing a perfect introduction. Your introductory paragraph in your satiric essay should explain how crucial your topic is and includes the background information.

Your satirical essay should therefore contain the following elements

  • A striking, eye-opening fact that aims to hook your reader’s attention to your topic
  • A context that emphasizes your subject’s significance
  • A thesis statement must be the main discussion point within your essay
  • A transition sentence that connects your essay introduction to its body or the first body paragraph

A satirical essay body

You need to cover your topic to the fullest hence your body can contain as many paragraphs as possible. Your paragraph’s structure should reflect your satirical essay outline, i.e., introduction, body, and conclusion.

Each satirical essay paragraph should be built in the following way

-A topic sentence, which is a mini – introduction that leads to your argument

-The main argument

-A little summary to establish a link to the next paragraph

The most common approach to writing body paragraphs is the MEAL approach. This approach stands for the main idea, evidence, analysis, and lead-out. Its elements are

-The main idea, which means a topic sentence

-Evidence and analysis refer to the main argument. Given that, the evidence is the argument itself, while analysis adds an extra explanation

-Lead-out is a combination of summary and transition

A satirical essay conclusion

Satire essay conclusions consist of several parts, which are.

A rephrased thesis statement – Do you remember the main essay point in your essay introduction? You should rewrite one, introducing new meanings. You must make your reader reconsider your thesis statement assuming all the facts, arguments, and statistics discussed in your satiric essay.

A summary of essay arguments is the central part of your conclusion. You should connect your supporting evidence to the thesis statement, explaining their significance within your topic

A closing sentence, which provides your essay with a sense of completeness

Tips for choosing an appropriate satirical essay topic

Are you in need of satirical essay topic ideas? Remember, a well-chosen topic contributes a lot to your success in writing. Here are some tips for picking good topics for a satirical essay.

  1. Select provocative topics, like is there a thin line between love and hate?
  2. Focus on something that drives you mad. You will write a perfect satirical essay saturated with sarcasm and black humour if you choose a topic that disturbs you personally.
  3. Refer to time-proven themes like politics and government but cover present-day issues. 
  4. Check for topics on the web. There is no better way to develop hundreds of satire essay topics than googling them online. Consequently, you can find unique and, most importantly, creative themes to start with.

Do’s and don’ts  when writing a satirical essay

Think again if you think writing a satirical essay is a walk in the park. The use of satirical fiction is fun but incorporating it to make the story relevant is tricky. If you want to dip your toe in the uncharted water of how to write a satirical essay, here are the crucial tips to remember

  1. Don’t shy away from hyperbole

Exaggeration is satire’s lifeline; hence you should struggle to find things worth satirizing. Emphasizing the characters’ actions, reactions, or inaction throws your satirical essay to a new angle that is satire in itself.

For instance, a cardiologist is methodical, keen, and meticulous. How about you exaggerate his features and make him have an obsessive-compulsive disorder. He wakes up at twilight to take the temperature of his family while they are asleep because they might have come into contact with germs while using the microwave.

  1. Make abnormality to be the new normal.

You are ready to write a satiric essay if you have a keen eye for contradictions and incongruity. Incongruous things upset the harmony of shared expectations and set things out of place. You, therefore, need to have a keen observational eye to achieve abnormal situations out of normality.

  1. Flip and subvert things on the head

This is similar to incongruity, only that it focuses on the reversal idea. It relies less on the minute humorous observations, in the traditional sense, and more on lampooning social order or social customs.

  1. Use mimicry to take the mickey

Parody is fundamental to satire, but that doesn’t mean you have to be too obvious with it. You should be subtle, but ultimately, if you are to imitate an author’s writing style or ridicule a specific genre in which your story can be categorized, this will be satirical enough. 

  1. Don’t worry about being laughed at

The misconception that satires should contain a lot of jokes and strive to be laugh-out-loud hilarious shouldn’t be the case. Although satires do invoke humour, don’t consider being humorous the same as being funny. Follow these crucial points, and you will write an impeccable satiric essay.

Common examples of satirical essay

If you need to write a good satirical essay, look it up to understand the task ahead of you. Here are some examples of satirical essays

  • Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes
  • The nose by Nikolai Gogol
  • The angel of the odd by Edgar Allan Poe
  • The trial by Franz Kafka


If you feel like you need to reveal atrocities committed by bigwigs to the hoi polloi, a satirical essay is your answer. You must follow the above guidelines on how to write a satirical essay and embark on your journey.

If you are stuck, reach out to the concerned people who will help and guide you in writing an excellent satirical essay. There is nothing more fulfilling than voicing your opinions and impacting people.

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