What is an argumentative text? Definition, examples and types

There are many types of texts that we can find when we are surfing the internet, in the workplace, in an entertainment setting, etc. Each of them has certain functions and characteristics. One of them is the argumentative text.

As the name suggests, this type of text aims to set out a series of arguments for or against a subject, to persuade the reader to share that point of view. In this article, we will know its definition, functions, some types, uses, examples and the sections they contain.

    What is an argumentative text?

    An argumentative text is one that it aims to show opinions in favor of a particular topic, and to convince or persuade the reader on specific ideas or positioning.

    That is, it can try to change the reader’s mind (in case the reader thinks differently), or offer strong arguments that ratify and reinforce their ideas, in case they are the same as the text itself collects. .

    The argumentative text, however, also it can include ideas that seek to refute one thesis, to confirm another. Thus, the fundamental purpose of these texts is to persuade the reader of a particular idea or ideas.

    the argument

    In this way, the argument mainly appears in the argumentative text, that is, the incorporation of examples and ideas that demonstrate an idea or a thesis. Cicero defined argument as “the discourse by which the evidence is presented to give credit, authority and foundation to our proposition.”

    Through, reasoning around a subject is expressed in writing. For example, an argumentative text could be a text in favor of abortion and containing arguments in favor of abortion and arguments against its ban.

    In addition to the argumentative elements and resources, the argumentative text is also elaborated through the exhibition; the exhibition consists in showing a certain number of elements in relation to a subject, and not so much to “prove” as the argument implies.

    the functions

    The main function of an argumentative text is the callative function of the language, in particular thanks to the argumentative elements that it contains. This function, also called the conative function, refers to the attempt by the sender of the message to influence the behavior of the recipient.

    Through it, the sender expects the recipient to express some kind of reaction after listening or reading the text. This function therefore focuses on the receiver.

    However, this is not the only function it performs; it also fulfills a referential function, Through the exhibition elements mentioned above. This function refers to the act of transmitting objective information about the world around us; that is, it focuses on showing, expressing, communicating, conveying ideas, etc.


      An argumentative text can be of different types: scientific, philosophical, political, journalistic, opinion-oriented, judicial … depending on the subject treated and its characteristics. Let’s briefly see what some of them are.

      1. Scientific texts

      A scientific argumentative text, in turn, it can be of different types, depending on the subject it is talking about: psychological, theological, linguistic …

      The essential characteristic of scientific texts is that they are based on facts and dataIn other words, their arguments are developed thanks to empirical and solid knowledge. In other words, they are based on proven or demonstrable facts, as well as on statistical data.

      In this type of text, we find as examples scientific articles, research reports, dissertations, etc.

      2. Journalistic texts

      In argumentative journalistic texts, the aim is the same, persuade the reader to share or reject an idea. However, a more partial view is taken here than in the scientific text, and the importance of creating an understandable narrative is gaining ground over the importance of exposing hard data.

      Examples of this type of text are critical reviews (for example a review of cinema, music, food …) and letters from readers (where they express their opinion on an issue).

      3. Legal texts

      Legal or court texts may be intended, for example, to prevent the reader from taking legal action against the issuer, or to change some kind of statement, to revoke a charge, etc. In other words, that is to say they seek the reaction and response of the recipient to a legal problem.

      On the other hand, legal texts usually set out a series of conditions or restrictions relating to a certain type of action. They are usually written by lawyers, judges or notaries.

      Examples of this type of text, or elements that are usually found in this type of document, are: sentences, statements, appeals, court notices, etc.

      4. Oral debates

      Oral debates, when they take place in a formal context, are followed by an argumentative text that supports them. Oral debates they can be carried out in opinion forums, for example, or on television as part of a political campaign, etc.

      In them, several speakers present their vision, point of view or perspective in relation to a common theme.


        The argumentative texts, in addition, they are widely used in advertising and propaganda, To persuade the recipient to purchase a particular product or contract for a particular service; they are also used to support awareness campaigns.

        On the other hand, in the oral language that we use on a daily basis, there are also a lot of ideas that could be found in an argumentative text (which is written).

        In other words, on a daily basis and in a multitude of contexts, we use argumentation to convince or persuade others of something we are thinking; we do it with our parents (for example to let us out), with our teachers (for example to take an exam), with our bosses (to increase our salary), etc.

        These examples are found not only in informal contexts (family, street …) but also in formal contexts (in round tables, in political debates, in work meetings, etc.). Thus, although they are not strictly argumentative texts (because they are not written documents, but rather oral language), if we use arguments daily, As well as other elements that can be found in this type of text.


        Usually, an argumentative text consists of these essential sections: an introduction, the development (argumentative body) and a conclusion.

        1. Introduction

        It can also be called framing; here it is a question of introducing the subject on which it will be spoken, in a rather brief way. The main ideas that are going to be developed in the body of the text are set out, and for this reason, it is written in such a way that it catches the reader’s attention.

        In addition, it also aims to create a first favorable attitude towards the subject (or controversy) on which the argumentative text will deal. After the introduction, and before the elaboration, the thesis of the text is written, that is to say the main idea on which it will be reflected. The thesis can cover one idea or encompass several.

        2. Development

        The development of the text, also called the argumentative body, and it consists of the main arguments which seek to convince or persuade the reader. This section is about the exposition and argumentation of all ideas, through examples, tests, inferences, etc.

        The objective is to support a thesis or to refute it (depending on the type of text), through a solid knowledge base and contributions theoretical.

        3. Conclusion

        The last section of any argumentative text is the concluding section; in it, the conclusion (s) drawn from the previous argument, corresponding to the development section, are stated.

        That is to say that it is a kind of synthesis or summary which makes it possible to finish persuading the reader or to “prove” that what has been said has a solid plot basis. Thus, it collects the initial thesis and the main arguments of the text, to reach the consequence that is extracted from the study of a series of data or assertions (that is, to reach a conclusion).

        Bibliographical references:

        • Cáceres, O. (2016) Types of argumentative texts.
        • Poblete, California (2005). Production of argumentative texts and metacognition. Letters.

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