Assignment #4: Rhetorical Analysis
How to Write a Rhetorical Analysis/Response
- Identify the title and author of the chosen reading. The article must be on the module theme: Education. You may choose any of the articles assigned or one of your own. Give your assignment a title – not the title of the article. (See model below)
- Then, write three organized paragraphs that express your thinking concerning the quote(s)/section you have chosen. Follow these guidelines:
- Paragraph 1 must summarize the content of the writing you have chosen to read. This will be a paragraph in which you capture only the main idea(s) of the author(s).
- Paragraph 2 will identify and analyze a specific rhetorical technique (possibly two) the writer is using to affect his or her readers. It will be important for you to actually use directly quoted sections from the text of the reading to illustrate/support your findings. (See model below.)
- Then, Paragraph 3 (and possibly 4) will express your personal view of the effectiveness of the above mentioned technique. Does the technique help the reader connect to the writer’s idea? If so, how so? If not, why is it not yet working to help the essay? Is this a technique you will use yourself?
The Rhetorical Analysis/Response assignment needs to be formatted to fit onto one page only so single spacing is most effective. Remember to keep your formal heading against the left margin and to center your assignment title.
Rhetorical Analysis Example #1:
The attached example uses Martin Luther King’s Letter from Birmingham Jail. This example just points out the rhetorical appeals, and does not focus on the other rhetorical devices. This is just to give you an idea of what you can write. Below is another example that focus on a rhetorical device: diction.
Rhetorical Analysis Example #2:
- Example #2 Assn. #4 is Below
First Last Name
June 5, 2008
From essay: “Is Sex All That Matters?” by Joyce Garity
Joyce Garity’s essay asks readers tough questions around who must carry the responsibility for educating teens about the emotional intimacy issues connected with sex. She focuses specifically on whose role it is to really express to our youth the incredibly complex idea of healthy relationship intimacies. She also points out that teaching our young people to see the larger picture is inhibited by the mass amount of media messages coming at our children that completely ignore the emotional issues connected to sexual activity.
Garity uses emotionally charged diction to keep her readers involved. As she describes the fifteen-year-old girl who is pregnant for the second time, her descriptions play up the fact that the girl is just a child. The details of “Her wide , blue eyes” and “her innocent smile” give the reader a clear picture that the girl does not really understand what it is that is happening to her in her life. Yes, she’s pregnant, but the long term responsibility or consequences of her actions are beyond her immaturity. It seems she just cannot really “conceive” of what it is she has done to her future.
This is a powerful essay for anyone who has children of their own or is still a “child” themselves. Because of Garity’s clever use of diction, the reader can see and feel the idea that something must be done to prevent more teenage pregnancies. The idea that young women and men are not emotionally ready to be parents is an enormous one. Teens must learn somewhere that simply because you have developed all of the physical parts to engage in sexual behavior, does not mean that you are really ready to deal with the consequences of that behavior. That we must be teaching teens that there is more to sex that the act itself becomes so obvious when we look at the pregnant girls in her essay through Garity’s eyes: girls who just don’t have a clue that the life they have helped to create is a complex responsibility to fulfill.