This compare and contrast chart shows that compare and contrast is a rhetorical style that focuses on the similarities and differences between two or more things: ideas, concepts, items, places, etc. This decorative style will frequently appear incomplete essays. Still, it will also appear frequently in paragraphs of any essay in which you need to make some comparisons to help illustrate a point. A compare and contrast essay accomplishes two tasks: It discusses at least two different things' similarities and differences. First, you must identify a point of comparison to ensure that the two things have enough in common. Then, as shown in this comparison, you identify their differences.