Objective and subjective text characteristics and examples

Objective and subjective text

The objective text and the subjective text obey different communicative functions and can be recognized by the use of certain linguistic features. An objective text is one intended to inform about a certain fact without showing the opinions of the author. Objective and subjective text characteristics

A subjective text will be one that expresses opinions, feelings or ideas of the writer. Examples of objective text can be seen in scientific texts or news, and subjective text in literary narratives, advertisements or in common and colloquial language.

According to what the author wants to convey, he will use one mode or another, so that the communicative function is effective. It is necessary to know the context to know when to use objectivity or subjectivity.

Characteristics of the target text

An objective text is one that is free of emotions, in which the author speaks in a neutral way, without intervening with appreciations.

It provides measurable, quantifiable and verifiable data.

1-Use of the 3rd person

The style of an objective text is impersonal, so it uses the 3rd person more. The use of the 1st person plural is also common, in sentences such as “Let’s take a closer look at what are the steps to solve quadratic equations”.

2-Use of the indicative and the present timeless

The indicative mode is the one that expresses an action and reflects an objective attitude on the part of the issuer. In other words, it is the way things are explained. The timeless present expresses the reality outside the passage of time. Objective and subjective text characteristics

In other words, a phrase in the present timeless and indicative can be: “when magma cools, igneous rocks are formed. These are of two types: plutonic or volcanic ”. Thus, an objective text expresses the reality far from emotions or opinions, since what is said is a verifiable fact.

3-Use of specific and non-evaluative adjectives

Specifying adjectives abound in the objective text , since through them the noun is differentiated. This is the case of “igneous rocks”, where igneous refers to a certain feature of the rocks and helps to clarify the concept of magma.

Another example would be “ribonucleic acid.” This type of adjective cannot be deleted, as part of the concept would be eliminated.

4-Specialized lexicon

The target text is characterized by using specific words or techniques. That is, each scientific discipline will use characteristic terms. In mathematics, biology, physics, etc., it is relevant to use the right words, referring to their own field.


The tone used is expository, with short paragraphs, short and clear sentences and few subordinations. Reflections or opinions are avoided. Objective and subjective text characteristics

Target text examples

Example 1: binomial theorem (mathematics)

“The binomial theorem is a formula that provides the development of the n- th power (where n is a positive integer) of a binomial. According to the theorem, it is possible to expand the power (x + y) n in a sum involving terms of the form ax b and c , where the exponents b and c… ”.

Example 2: semiology (linguistics)

“Semiology or semiotics is the science derived from philosophy that deals with communication systems within human societies, studies the general properties of sign systems as a basis for understanding all human activity. It distinguishes between denotation and connotation, between the paradigmatic and the syntagmatic ”.

Subjective text characteristics

In a subjective text the author is always present, his opinions, his feelings and his appreciations about the world are abundant, and they inform the reader of what is happening inside the writer.

Use of exclamatory, doubtful, exhortative or wishful sentences

It is common for the issuer or writer to use exclamations, “How long has it been since she left!”, “Oh my!”, As a way to highlight emotions.

Likewise, doubtful sentences (which express doubt or probability), exhortative (which express orders) and wishful (those which express desire) are common to indicate affectivity.

Use of the 1st person

As the communicative function is to transmit what the sender feels or thinks, he will always refer to himself: I write, I work.

Use of opinion or feeling verbs

It is usual for someone who writes a subjective text to say: I think, I believe, I think, I feel, as a way of making people understand that it is he, and not someone else, who makes certain assertions.

Evaluative adjectives

The evaluative adjectives are those that give a value to reality: “an annoying and eternal summer”, “the situation was untenable, but it acted correctly”, “a dark street”.

Use of different expressive resources

The author of a subjective text uses irony, metaphor, rhetorical questions or repetitions to convey what he wants to express, which is his way of seeing things and feeling them. Objective and subjective text characteristics

Use of all verb modes

As seen, the objective text makes use only of the indicative mood, which is that of objective reality. On the contrary, the subjective text also uses the subjunctive and imperative mood, in addition to the indicative.


The lexicon used may have regional twists of where the issuer lives, words and colloquial expressions, with long and subordinate sentences (although the latter will depend on the style of each writer).

Examples of subjective texts

Example 1: Cassandra, by Christa Wolf (novel)

“With my story I am going towards death.

Here I end, powerless, and nothing, nothing that I could have done or failed to do, want or think, would have led me to another goal. More deeply even than my fear, it soaks me, corrodes and poisons the indifference of the celestials towards us the lands ”.

Example 2: “Marsé and the spirit of the novel”, Antonio Muñoz Molina (opinion column)

“Juan Marsé encouraged the spirit of the novel with a purity and integrity that are only reserved for the greatest names in the trade, or for those instinctive storytellers who enchant when they tell and will never write a word.”

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