Write a rhetorical analysis essay argument assignment

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This is a paper that requires the student to write a rhetorical analysis essay argument assignment. The paper also provides additional guidelines to use in writing this assignment paper well.

Write a rhetorical analysis essay argument assignment

Essay 2: Rhetorical Analysis

Choose one of the assigned articles and read it thoroughly, making sure you have an accurate understanding of the author’s argument. Then, considering the audience and purpose, decide if you feel the author’s argument is effective. You will then write an essay in which you claim that the article is effective or not, and provide a careful analysis of key rhetorical strategies to support your claim.


·         Review the Rhetorical Appeals module in the textbook

·         Mark up the article thoroughly and check with me or your classmates to make sure you understand it thoroughly and are identifying specific strategies or flaws in the argument accurately—a misinterpretation of the article will undermine your analysis.

I recommend that you avoid using the words logos¸ pathos, and ethos. Since these are categories of strategies, focusing on these terms—or organizing an essay around them—often results in essays that are too vague in discussing specific strategies or that have paragraphs that overlap with each other (since the boundaries between the three appeals are not always clear-cut).

·         Make sure your entire argument is focused.  Do not write an essay that addresses strengths and weaknesses equally—instead, choose a side to focus on.  It is appropriate, however, to briefly acknowledge why you think the author made certain choices or to acknowledge specific strengths.

·         Do NOT try to analyze every strength or weakness you see in the article.  Your essay should not sound like a list of strategies you noticed.  Instead, select the most important strategies that support your argument and focus on a detailed analysis of those.

Write a rhetorical analysis essay argument assignment

·         Decide on a specific rationale for the organization of your ideas.  Do not discuss each point in the order in which it appears in the article unless the order is also a key feature of your analysis.

·         Try to include multiple examples from the text to support each of your points.

·         Your commentary should include these things:

o   Identify the specific rhetorical feature that you see in the example

o   Explain why it makes the argument effective

·         If you already had strong opinions on the issue of gun violence in America and would be unlikely to change your mind on them, be intentional about putting aside your personal opinions on the subject as much as possible so that your analysis is not clouded by personal bias on the topic.

·         Remember that this essay is NOT about you agreeing with or disagreeing with the argument. It is your analysis of the rhetorical strategies that make the argument effective/ineffective. Ideally, I should not be able to tell what your opinion on the topic is.

·         Be careful when critiquing an issue in the article. You should indicate that you understand why the author made certain choices. Otherwise, you run the risk of sounding like you’re critiquing something simply because you do not understand it.

o   E.g. Given the fact that Steiner’s general audience is aware of yet mostly uninterested in the issue, it makes sense that he would try to provoke the audience in order to get them engaged. However, he overdoes it when his tone crosses the line and becomes judgmental of readers.

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