Recognizing the Author's Purpose

Persuade? Inform? Entertain?

To Persuade
  • convince
  • opinion
  • advertisements
  • for or against
To Inform
  • teach
  • facts
  • dictionary
  • report
To entertain
  • enjoy or be inspired
  • story
  • describes feelings or appearance

The strategies explained in this section are:

Asking the following questions:

  1. Is the author for or against something?
  2. Is the author trying to teach the facts about something?
  3. Is the author describing a story or a poem?

Do you want to add years to your life and feel better? Here are a few tips. First, to decrease your chance of a heart attack, eat a handful of nuts each day. Also, to ease the effects of arthritis, be sure to include some citrus, such as orange juice in your diet. Finally, exercise on a regular basis. The primary purpose of this passage is

The moment the words were out of my mouth, I wished I could take them back. I didn't mean to hurt Keith's feelings. He is such a nice person, and he certainly doesn't deserve to be treated so poorly. I guess the stress from my job has been more than I can handle. Instead of taking my problems out on him, I need to deal directly with the people who create the stress. If only I didn't care so much what people thought of me at work, then this would not have happened.The primary purpose of this passage is to

Alonzo winked at his mother's shocked gaze and with a smile he said, "sausage and pepperoni pizza for breakfast makes perfect sense. Allow me to demonstrate. You have your tomato. Tomato is technically a fruit. You have your cheese. Cheese is a dairy product. You have your crust… necessary carbs for quick energy in the morning. And don't forget the sausage and the pepperoni… my protein. If you think about it, it is just like bacon and eggs, toast, and orange juice." Still smiling, he added, "really, it is… well, almost." "Why are you looking at me that way?" The primary purpose of this passage is