Famous Essayists - List of Famous Essayists

Essayists are the writers who produce essays. Essays are the literary pieces of work in which the author presents their own arguments and reflections. Since essays convey the author’s individual views, they make for compelling and interesting reading. Essayists may write on a number of topics like politics, education, social issues, literary criticisms, environment, human rights, etc. Even though essays are primarily written in prose, essayists like Alexander Pope have taken the liberty to compose their essays in verse. Essayists, like writers of other genres, do not always believe in conforming to traditions. John Locke was one such essayist who chose to ignore the brevity element in composing his voluminous essays like ‘An Essay Concerning Human Understanding’. The French author Michel de Montaigne who lived during the 16 th century is often hailed as the first essayist, though he himself claimed to have been influenced by the writings of Plutarch and Seneca. Essayists like Joseph Addison, Richard Steele and Samuel Johnson flourished during the Age of Enlightenment when essays became the preferred literary form for convincing people of their position. Scroll down further for more information on famous essayists from all over the world who enriched literature with their writings.

The Most Famous Essayists

NameBirthdayNationalityBio
Ruskin BondMay 19, 1934IndianRuskin Bond is an award winning Indian author of British descent
Lisa Brennan-JobsMay 17, 1978AmericanCheck out all that you wanted to know about Lisa Brennan-Jobs, Steve Jobs’ daughter; her birthday, her family and personal life, fun trivia facts and more.
D. H. LawrenceSeptember 11, 1885BritishD
Samuel BeckettApril 13, 1906IrishSamuel Beckett was an Irish playwright, novelist, theatre director and poet
Sandra CisnerosDecember 20, 1954AmericanSandra Cisneros is an American writer known for audaciously penning the realities and expectations from females in US and Mexico
Aldous HuxleyJuly 26, 1894British, AmericanAldous Leonard Huxley was a prominent English writer
Simone de BeauvoirJanuary 9, 1908FrenchSimone de Beauvoir was an eminent French writer, intellectual, activist, and philosopher
Robert HaydenAugust 4, 1913AmericanRobert Hayden was an American poet who wrote the famous poem, “Those Winter Sundays”
Plutarch45Greek, Ancient RomanPlutarch was a famous Greek biographer and essayist
Amiri BarakaOctober 7, 1934AmericanPoet and political activist, Amiri Baraka was one of the most influential African-American writers
Barbara Kingsolver

Barbara Kingsolver

Barbara Kingsolver is an American novelist, poet, social activist, and author of the best-selling novel ‘The Poisonwood Bible’

AmericanApril 8, 1955112 views

Antonin Artaud

Antonin Artaud was one of the most influential playwrights of the 20th century

FrenchSeptember 4, 1896135 views

Leigh Hunt

James Henry Leigh Hunt better known as Leigh Hunt was an English poet, essayist, journalist, editor, writer and critic

BritishOctober 19, 1784157 views

Henri Bergson

Henri-Louis Bergson was a well-known philosopher who won the 1927 Nobel Prize in Literature

FrenchOctober 18, 1859155 views

Giuseppe Ungaretti

Giuseppe Ungaretti was an Italian modernist poet , essayist and journalist

ItalianFebruary 8, 1888131 views

Wisława Szymborska

Wisława Szymborska was a Polish poet, essayist and translator who won the 1996 Nobel Prize in Literature

PolishJuly 2, 1923106 views

Knut Hamsun

Knut Hamsun was a Norwegian writer, poet, dramatist, and social critic

NorwegianAugust 4, 1859154 views

Herta Müller

Herta Müller is a Romanian-born German novelist, poet, essayist who won the 2009 Nobel Prize in Literature

GermanAugust 17, 195382 views

Camilo José Cela

Camilo José Cela was a renowned Spanish writer from the post war Spanish literature period

SpanishMay 11, 191699 views

Ruskin Bond

Ruskin Bond is an award winning Indian author of British descent

IndianMay 19, 1934362 views