Paul Krugman’s “How I Work”

The following sample English essay is 403 words long, in MLA format, and written at the undergraduate level. It has been downloaded 317 times and is available for you to use, free of charge.

Paul Krugman's "How I Work" discusses his passion for economics and how he began to get his proverbial feet wet while at MIT. Krugman discusses his particular style of writing as it relates to his intellectualism at the time. Krugman describes the basic rules of research that can be applied to any field that is analytical or creative. His essay is intently focused on those beginning their foray into economics, but the general idea presented is to offer writing tips to simplify one's approach when writing and publishing any kind of formal or professional paper.

"How I Work," is an expressive essay in that Krugman takes the reader through his journey into the field of economics, which would ultimately lead him to be a writer for The New York Times. For Krugman, there was not necessarily a specific technique initially. "I stumbled into the way I work. The essence of my style is a general research strategy that can be summarized in a few rules" (Krugman). The essence of Krugman's essay is grounded on simplifying the writing process through communication styles and making it easy for individuals who are progressing through their fervor. By adding a few chronological flourishes to the essay, Krugman makes a convincing case for why economics is a meaningful subject matter to discuss and write on. Krugman writes "for me, the biggest thrill in theory is the moment when your model tells you something that should have been obvious all along, something that you can immediately relate to what you know about the world, and yet which you don't really appreciate" (Krugman). Krugman finds a compelling way to engage his readers by humanizing his essay.

This essay was selected because Paul Krugman is a prominent writer on financial and political issues for The New York Times and often has interesting commentary. Krugman has a way of making what many would find boring fascinating. He makes economics engaging. "Let me state explicitly the rules of research: listen to the gentiles, question the question, dare to be silly, [and] simplify, simplify," (Krugman) he writes expressing a pivotal moment when he realized economics was for him. Krugman is influential with his attitudes about topics ranging from fiscal policy to income distribution because he has a way of drawing the reader in with persuasive language and humor.

Work Cited

Krugman, Paul. "How I Work." Essay. Yale University, c.1996. Web. 27 Apr. 2013. <>.