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Introduction to Rhetoric

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1 Introduction to Rhetoric
English iii

2 What is rhetoric? Rhetoric: the art of effective speaking or writing
Analysis: the process of separating something into its constituent elements, examining the elements, and evaluating how they work together to create the whole Any text has three elements: Speaker – the person/persona delivering the message Purpose – the topic and reason for delivering the message Audience – the group for whom the message is intended Rhetorical analysis is simply the analysis of the relationship(s) among the elements of a text. It requires close reading and an understanding of how various rhetorical devices and strategies are used to create effective rhetorical appeals.

3 Methods for Analysis OPTIC for visuals TPCASTT for poetry
OPTIC - interpreting visual text.pdf TPCASTT for poetry TPCASTT_Template.pdf SOAPSToneD for annotation and analysis of any other text. Use this on a regular basis! SOAPSToneD.pdf

4 The Rhetorical Triangle
LOGOS (Message) ETHOS (Speaker) PATHOS (Audience) Appeal to logos: based on logic, facts, and truths; the truths can be universally accepted or proven facts, or may be based on ideas or concepts true for a specific group of people (audience) Appeal to ethos: believability of the speaker; credibility and trustworthiness Appeal to pathos: designed to stir the emotions of the audience; language or syntax designed to make the audience more receptive to or engaged in the message

5 Examples in Advertising
Look at the following commercials. Identify the rhetorical context (speaker, purpose, audience) and the appeals being used (logos, ethos, pathos). Discuss how and why the appeals are effective. Commercial 1 Commercial 2 Commercial 3

6 Examples in Literature
Read the Frederick Douglass excerpt. Passages for Analysis\Douglass excerpt for rhetorical analysis.pdf Logos Specific names (Captain Anthony, Mr. Plummer) Level of detail (explains how horrible the treatment was) Descriptions of violence (it is universally accepted by audience that these types of actions are inhumane) Douglass still remembers the mistreatment Pathos Emotional language/word choice (“…seem to take great pleasure…”, “…literally covered in blood”, “blood-clotted cowskin”, “It was the blood-stained gate…”, “I was quite a child…”) Subject matter is inherently emotional (slavery, torture) Ethos Douglass witnessed this with his own eyes (adds to credibility) Douglass was a slave (first-hand account) Specific details (adds to credibility) Tone/specific details (Douglass shows how bad the treatment was instead of just telling the audience) Precise language, clarity of language and syntax (Douglass’ ability to write eloquently adds to his credibility)

7 Practice Work in groups of 3 to study the print ads you are given.
For each ad, identify the following: Rhetorical context Speaker: Purpose: Audience: Rhetorical appeals Ethos: Logos: Pathos: What is the primary appeal being used? Why is it the most effective?

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