Definition, Characteristics, and Example of Narrative, Descriptive, and Expository Text


1. Definition :
A narrative text is a story that is created in a constructive format describing a sequence of fictional or non-fictional events.

2. Characteristics :
• Many based on common events from life
• Familiarity makes prediction easier
• Key vocabulary often known
• Simple vocabulary
• Cause and effect known
• Concrete, real concepts
• People oriented
• Dialogue makes text less concept dense
• Stories can have personal meaning
• May give insight for own life/interest
• Purpose is to entertain or share experience
• Chronological structure
• Simple concepts
• Familiar story types

3. Example :


Once upon a time there was a girl called Cinderella. She lived with her step sisters and step mother. They treated her badly. She had to do all the house work.
One day an invitation to the ball came to the family. But, her step sisters would not let her go. Cinderella was very sad. The step sisters went to the ball without her.
Fortunately, the fairy godmother came and helped her to get to the ball. At the ball, Cinderella danced with the prince. The prince fell in love with her and then married her. They lived happily ever after.



1. Definition :
Descriptive text is a text whose purpose is to describe what a person or a thing is like and to describe and reveal a particular person, place, or thing.

2. Characteristics :
• Focus on specific participants
• Use of Attributive and Identifying Processes
• Use of being/having verbs
• Use of adjectives
• Frequent use of Epithets and Classifiers in nominal groups
• Use of simple present tenses.

3. Example :


Jakarta is located on the northwest coast of Java Island, at the mouth of the Ciliwung river. It dominates Indonesian administrative, economy, cultural activities, and is a major commercial and transportation hub within Asia.



1. Definition :
Expository text is a text that informs, explains, describes, or defines the author’s subject to the reader.

2. Characteristics
• Often about topics not known
• New information makes prediction harder
• Key vocabulary often new
• Cause and effect not known
• Abstract concepts
• Thing or subject oriented
• Facts make text more concept dense
• Explanations have impersonal meaning
• May have no relation to own life/interest
• Purpose is to explain or persuade

3. Example :

This family was a victim of a problem they could have avoided-a problem that, according to Florida park rangers, hundreds of visitors suffer each year. “Several times a month,” ranger Rod Torres of O’Leno State Park said, “people get scared and leave the park in the middle of the night”. Those people picked the wrong kind of park to visit. Not that there was anything wrong with the park: The hikers camped next to them loved the wild isolation of it. But it just wasn’t the kind of place the couple from New Jersey had in mind when they decided to camp out on this trip through Florida. If they had known about the different kinds of parks in Florida, they might have stayed in a place they loved.


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