View Full Version : [SAT essay] Is jealousy ever a good thing?

06-16-2008, 10:43 AM
My first SAT essay here. Hope to see some comments. Thanks in advance!
Essay topic:
"Every one of us has experienced jealousy (or the 'green-eyed monster') somewhere or at some point of our lives. Jealousy has to do with possessiveness in relationships and is different from envy, which is targeted at someone else's achievements or possessions. Jealousy is born out of other emotions like fear, anger, betrayal and powerlessness. Envy is a petty emotion that seethes with rancour against someone else's happiness." (Rakhi Abraham)
Assignment: Is jealousy ever a good thing? Write an essay in which you answer this question and discuss your point of view on this issue. Support your position logically with examples from literature, the arts, history, politics, science and technology, current events, or your experience or observation.

Jealousy has always been one of the meanest quality of mankind. What is worse is that, it is almost inevitable. In one way or another, jealousy enters our lives, naturally and sometimes unconsciously, creating suffering for ourselves and others. As events from history and daily life have shown, humanís failure to stay away from this instinct has led to ruined relationships, suffering for everyone involved, and even demoralization.

Letís take Cesare Borgia as an example of how dangerous jealousy is to human. As the oldest son of the powerful Pope Alexander VI of Vatican, Cesare is said to have everything, from wealth to land and power. Compared to his brother Giovanni, however, Cesare himself felt inferior. He was sick of seeing Giovanni taking away from him beautiful women and more affection from the Pope, as well as losing more important military duties and national honor in to his brother. In situations like this, it is human nature to feel jealous, but Cesareís extreme envy led him to kill his brother. Now having gained absolute power, it is ironic that Cesare was still not happy. His father was so upset that he imprisoned himself in a palace for a long time, and Cesare was detested by Giovanniís wife and many family members. From the story, it is startling how jealousy can make people do crazy things and turn brotherhood into rivalry, degrading moral values and causing agony to everyone.

Daily life proves to be a huge source of evidences for the negative effects of jealousy. I feel sad to see the way some of my friends at school treat each other like rivals. Because of excessive competitiveness in academics, the scene of some classmates making fun of somebody elseís low grade is not uncommon. I am astonished at the way many students turn so indifferent whenever I ask them for help with my homework, and the way they wish each other to fail exams so that they can climb to the top of the class. People may argue that being jealous of othersí success gives them extra determination. They must have not realized that friendship is more important than superficial achievements. By being jealous, they actually develop a selfish attitude, and sacrifice what may have become their lifelong friendships.

Among the many ways to achieve our goals, being jealous is absolutely the worst one, for proofs from both history and daily life have shown that it can destroy friendships and creates rivalry. Unless people can avoid it and take othersí success as a model and motivation for themselves to make progress, they will never have what they want.

11-27-2008, 11:53 PM
maybe just stick to the second paragraph to show how it effects them in school? ie. competitveness, selfishness?

you still need to discuss the opposite opinion?

jealousy is a negative emotion why? It causes people to do bad things.

thesis: Jealous is one of the worst human qualities, it causes friends to fight.


3 examples

othelo--iago is jealous of cassio's promotion so he plots to get even against his friends and trusted friends, it cause friends to fight each other, and even to kill.

you could provide three examples or just talk about how it brought out the worst in you ie. made you mad, made you do evil things, how it made you feel?

or just provide 3 examples to show how it brings out the worst in people?


Iago is very jealous of cassio's promotion so he causes havoc. He tells Rodrigo that his wife is cheating with Cassio. This leads to a fight. And causes Cassios demotion. So you can show that jealousy causes people to do bad things.

The, he steals Desdemonas handkerchief and plants it on Cassio. when othelo finds it he tells iago to kill Cassio--his best friend and loyal buddy--it shows it can lead to harm of other people

Othelo kills desomona--even to kill--

conclusion, jealously screws up rationale thought.

thats it 5 mins.

02-15-2009, 04:44 AM
well, i think one of the strongest emotion that a person can experience is jealousy.it is a negative thought and feeling that a person cannot avoid in his lifetime.this kind of emotion pushes the person having this to do drastic measure such as killing the person you are jealous or frame up the person. this emotion is frequently depicted in films and art form because it is such a powerful emotion that when you feel this you cannot think logically about the situation.

09-08-2010, 08:31 PM
I have wrote about this essay too, you should explain both sides, the positive and the neagative, not only the negative