Top 9+ Controversial Argumentative Essay Topics In 2023

controversial argumentative essay topics

In the world of academia, the art of writing an argumentative essay is one of the most critical skills a student can possess. As the name suggests, an argumentative essay is a form of writing where the author argues for or against a particular topic. The goal is to persuade the reader to agree with the writer’s opinion.

However, not all argumentative essay topics are created equal. Some are relatively straightforward, while others are controversial, often prompting heated debates and passionate discussions. In this blog, we will explore some controversial argumentative essay topics and examine why they can be so contentious.

What are Controversial argumentative essay topics?

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Controversial argumentative essay topics are those topics that provoke debate, disagreement, and varying opinions from individuals. These topics are typically complex and often relate to social, political, ethical, and current events issues. When writing an argumentative essay on a controversial topic, the writer aims to persuade the reader to accept their point of view by providing strong evidence and logical reasoning.

Some examples of controversial argumentative essay topics include:

  • Should the death penalty be abolished?
  • Should college education be free for everyone?
  • Should marijuana be legalized?
  • Should social media companies be held responsible for the spread of misinformation?
  • Should genetically modified organisms (GMOs) be banned?
  • Is climate change caused by human activity?
  • Should the government regulate the use of artificial intelligence?
  • Should abortion be legal?
  • Should gun control laws be stricter?

These topics are controversial because they have various perspectives, opinions, and beliefs attached to them. Writing an argumentative essay on such topics requires the writer to research extensively, consider various viewpoints, evaluate evidence, and present a strong argument to support their position.

Significance of Controversial Argumentative Essay Topics

Controversial argumentative essay topics are significant for several reasons. Firstly, they allow students to engage with complex issues and to develop critical thinking skills by exploring different perspectives and evaluating evidence. This type of essay prompts students to engage with the topic at a deeper level, considering the underlying values, assumptions, and beliefs that shape different arguments.

Secondly, controversial argumentative essay topics offer an opportunity for students to develop their writing skills by organizing and articulating their thoughts in a logical and persuasive manner. This type of writing requires students to research and analyze evidence, use critical thinking skills to evaluate the arguments of others, and communicate their ideas in a clear and concise manner.

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Thirdly, controversial argumentative essay topics are significant because they encourage students to become more engaged and informed citizens. By researching and writing about topics that are relevant to the world around them, students can become more informed about current events, social and political issues, and cultural differences. They can develop a deeper understanding of the perspectives of others and learn to engage in constructive dialogue and debate.

Elements of Controversial Argumentative Essay

The elements of a controversial argumentative essay include:

1. Introduction

The introduction should provide background information on the topic and grab the reader’s attention. It should also include a clear thesis statement that states your position on the issue.

2. Evidence

Your essay should be supported by evidence that is relevant, reliable, and credible. This evidence can include statistics, expert opinions, case studies, and research studies.

3. Counter Arguments

Addressing counterarguments shows that you have considered different viewpoints and strengthens your argument. You should anticipate potential counterarguments and provide evidence to refute them.

4. Logic and Reasoning

Your argument should be logical and supported by reasoning. You should use clear and concise language and avoid fallacies.

5. Organization

Your essay should be well-organized and easy to follow. Use transitions to connect your ideas and create a logical flow.

6. Conclusion

The conclusion should summarize your main points and restate your thesis statement. You can also leave the reader with something to think about or a call to action.

7. Tone

Your tone should be professional and respectful. Avoid using emotional language and focus on presenting a strong argument supported by evidence.

How to Write Controversial Argumentative Essay?

To write a controversial argumentative essay, you should follow these steps:

1. Choose a controversial topic

Start by selecting a topic that is controversial and has different viewpoints. It’s important to choose a topic that you are passionate about and have a strong opinion on.

2. Research the topic

Once you have selected a topic, you need to research it extensively. Use reliable sources such as academic journals, government reports, and reputable news sources. Take notes and keep track of the sources you use.

2. Formulate a thesis statement

Your thesis statement should clearly state your position on the topic and provide a roadmap for your essay. It should be clear, concise, and debatable.

3. Create an outline

An outline will help you organize your thoughts and ensure that your essay flows logically. Start by creating a thesis statement, then create an outline with the main points that support your argument.

4. Write the introduction

Your introduction should grab the reader’s attention and provide background information on the topic. It should end with your thesis statement.

5. Write the body paragraphs

Each body paragraph should focus on one main point that supports your thesis statement. Start each paragraph with a topic sentence and use evidence to support your argument.

6. Address counterarguments

Address any opposing arguments and provide evidence to refute them. This will make your argument stronger and show that you have considered different viewpoints.

7. Write the conclusion

Your conclusion should summarize your main points and restate your thesis statement. It should also leave the reader with something to think about or a call to action.

8. Edit and revise

After you have finished writing, take a break and then edit and revise your essay. Check for grammar and spelling errors and ensure that your argument is clear and supported by evidence.

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Top 9+ Interesting Controversial Argumentative Essay Topics In 2023

1. Gun Control

Gun control is perhaps one of the most contentious topics in the United States. Those who support gun control argue that stricter regulations would lead to a decrease in gun violence. Those against gun control, however, argue that it violates their Second Amendment rights and that stricter gun control would not reduce violence.

2. Abortion

Abortion is another controversial topic that has been debated for decades. Those who are pro-choice argue that women should have the right to choose whether or not to terminate a pregnancy, while those who are pro-life argue that all life is precious and that abortion is immoral.

3. Death Penalty

The death penalty is a topic that has been debated for centuries. Those who support the death penalty argue that it is a necessary form of punishment for the most heinous crimes. Those against the death penalty, however, argue that it is immoral and that there is always the possibility of executing an innocent person.

4. Immigration

Immigration is a hot-button issue in many countries. Those who support immigration argue that it is necessary for economic growth and that it is a fundamental right for people to seek a better life in a new country. Those against immigration, however, argue that it leads to job loss and that it can be a threat to national security.

5. LGBTQ+ Rights

The fight for LGBTQ+ rights has been ongoing for many years, and it is a topic that is still heavily debated today. Those who support LGBTQ+ rights argue that everyone deserves equal rights regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity. Those against LGBTQ+ rights, however, argue that it goes against traditional values and that it is not natural.

6. Climate Change

Climate change is a topic that has gained significant attention in recent years. Those who believe in climate change argue that it is a significant threat to our planet, and that urgent action needs to be taken to address it. Those who are skeptical of climate change, however, argue that it is a natural occurrence and that it is not caused by human activity.

7. Euthanasia

Euthanasia is a topic that often sparks passionate discussions. Those who support euthanasia argue that it is a humane way to end suffering for people who are terminally ill or in severe pain. Those against euthanasia, however, argue that it is immoral and that it goes against the value of human life.

8. Animal Rights

Animal rights is a topic that is often debated, with people on both sides feeling very strongly about their beliefs. Those who support animal rights argue that animals have the right to be treated with respect and dignity, and that they should not be used for human consumption or entertainment. Those against animal rights, however, argue that animals are not equal to humans and that they exist for our use and benefit.

9. Social Media

Social media is a relatively new topic, but it has already become controversial. Those who support social media argue that it is a valuable tool for communication and for building connections with people around the world. Those against social media, however, argue that it is addictive and can be harmful to mental health.

10. Capitalism

Capitalism is a topic that has been debated for centuries. Those who support capitalism argue that it is the most effective economic system for promoting innovation, competition, and individual freedom. Those against capitalism, however, argue that it leads to income inequality, exploitation of workers, and environmental degradation.

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Note: These are just some of the controversial argumentative essay topics that students may encounter in their academic careers. While these topics can be challenging to write about, they also offer an opportunity for students to engage in critical thinking and to explore different perspectives on complex issues.

When writing an argumentative essay, it is important to remember that there is no right or wrong answer. The goal is to present a compelling argument that is supported by evidence and logical reasoning. It is also essential to be respectful of opposing viewpoints and to acknowledge the complexity of the issue at hand. On the other hand, you can check Interesting Argumentative Essay Topics 2023.

How to Choose Right Controversial Argumentative Essay Topics?

Choosing a controversial argumentative essay topic can be challenging, but here are some steps to help you choose a topic:

1. Identify Your Interests

Start by identifying topics that you are passionate about or interested in. This will help you stay engaged and motivated throughout the writing process.

2. Research Current Events

Look for current events that are controversial and have different viewpoints. Examples include politics, social issues, or ethical debates.

3. Brainstorm

Make a list of potential topics and narrow down your options by considering the importance of the topic, its complexity, and how much information is available on it.

4. Consider Your Audience

Think about your audience and their interests. Your topic should be relevant and interesting to your audience.

5. Check Availability Of Sources

Ensure that there is enough information available on your topic. Check academic journals, government reports, and reputable news sources to ensure that you can find enough evidence to support your argument.

6. Check For Bias

Ensure that the topic is not biased towards one particular viewpoint. The controversial argumentative essay topics should have multiple perspectives.

7. Evaluate The Topic’s Relevance

Consider the relevance of the topic to current issues and debates. A relevant topic is more likely to engage your readers.

Tips on Choosing The Best Controversial Argumentative Essay Topics In 2023

Here are some tips on choosing the best controversial argumentative essay topics in 2023 : 

1. Stay Updated

Keep yourself informed about recent events, current issues, and topics that people strongly disagree about.

2. Choose Relevant And Timely Topics

Pick subjects that are important in 2023 and relate to things happening now, like technology, climate change, politics, social justice, health, or education.

3. Think About Your Audience And Purpose

Consider who will read your essay and why you’re writing it. Are you trying to persuade, inform, or start a discussion? Choose a topic that your audience will care about.

4. Balance Personal Interest And Fairness

Select a topic that you find interesting, but remember to be fair and consider different points of view.

5. Check Available Sources

Make sure you can find enough information and different opinions about the topic. This will help you build a strong argument supported by evidence and counterarguments.

6. Assess Controversy Levels

Look for topics that people strongly disagree about. Controversial topics are ones where people have different opinions and argue passionately.

7. Think About Ethical Considerations

Some controversial topics involve sensitive issues. Think about the potential impact of your topic on people or groups, and make sure your essay respects different viewpoints while encouraging critical thinking.

8. Stay Open-Minded

Consider topics that challenge your own beliefs. Exploring different perspectives can help you understand others better and make your arguments more persuasive.

Here are a few simple example topics to consider:

  • Should people be allowed to change their genes to prevent diseases?
  • How does social media affect our lives and relationships?
  • What can we do to address climate change and protect the environment?
  • What role should governments play in ensuring social justice?
  • How can we improve healthcare accessibility for everyone?
  • What changes are needed in the education system to better prepare students for the future?


In conclusion, controversial argumentative essay topics can be challenging, but they also offer a chance to develop critical thinking skills and to engage with important social, political, and economic issues. 

By approaching these topics with an open mind and a willingness to explore different perspectives, students can become better writers, thinkers, and citizens of the world.


Q1. What factors should be considered when choosing argumentative essay topics?

When selecting argumentative essay topics, it is important to consider factors such as relevance to current issues, availability of diverse viewpoints, potential for controversy, and ethical implications.

Q2.  Can you provide some examples of controversial argumentative essay topics?

Here are a few examples of controversial argumentative essay topics:

1. Should capital punishment be abolished worldwide?
2. Is genetically modified food safe for consumption?