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Fabulous Friday, September 11 “Two ways of Seeing a River” chpt. 1 of Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass What kind of audience? The Reality of.

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Presentation on theme: "Fabulous Friday, September 11 “Two ways of Seeing a River” chpt. 1 of Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass What kind of audience? The Reality of."— Presentation transcript:

1 Fabulous Friday, September 11 “Two ways of Seeing a River” chpt. 1 of Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass What kind of audience? The Reality of Slavery Rhetorical Proofs Sentence Patterns Homework: Start reading the Letter from Birmingham Jail online, complete “Two Ways” paragraph

2 Rhetorical Proofs Logos: appeal to reason Ethos: appeal to one’s character or authority; credibility Pathos: appeal to emotion Emotional, visual, auditory, tactile impact

3 Ethos Ethos names the persuasive appeal of one's character, especially how this character is established by means of the speech or discourse. Aristotle claimed that one needs to appear both knowledgeable about one's subject and benevolent. Cicero said that in classical oratory the initial portion of a speech … was the place to establish one's credibility with the audience.

4 Questions on Ethos in Narrative What do you learn about Douglass? What is Douglass's "voice?" What impressions do they have of him as a writer or a person? Do you have the impression that Douglass is "knowledgeable" about his subject? Why or why not? Do you feel Douglass is "benevolent"? Does Douglass appear to have good will and moral character? How does this add to or subtract from our reception of his Narrative?

5 Examples of Ethos in Narrative Douglass has a masterful command of the English language Douglass gives specific dates, locations, and circumstances of his birth, including the fact that so many details of his life were unknown - a very common occurrence for slaves. This situates Douglass as a "believable" slave - e.g., he has the credentials and appropriate back-story of a slave in Maryland.

6 Examples of Ethos in Narrative Douglass deliberately downplays his relationship with his mother, which increases his ethos with his audience. Example: "I received the tidings of her death with much the same emotions I should have probably felt at the death of a stranger." The technical name for this is litotes—where downplaying circumstances or accomplishments gains favor with the audience. In this case, we see that Douglass does, in fact, care for his mother (as he describes with great care her midnight visits), so her loss actually seems more dramatic rather than less (had he, for example, been more melodramatic). litotes

7 Logos Logos names the appeal to reason. Aristotle wished that all communication could be transacted only through this appeal, but given the weaknesses of humanity, he laments, we must resort to the use of the other two appeals. The Greek term logos is laden with many more meanings than simply "reason," and is in fact the term used for "oration." The topics of essays we talked about earlier (Narration, Description, Process, Definition, Division / Classification, Compare / Contrast, Cause and Effect) often support Logos

8 Logos in Narrative Douglass outlines a topic that he will continue to pursue in much of his writing—the false use of Christianity as a justification of slavery. Return to pages 4, 5: Every year brings with it multitudes of this class of slaves. It was doubtless in consequence…

9 Logos in Narrative Return to pages 4, 5: Every year brings with it multitudes of this class of slaves. It was doubtless in consequence… The "curse of Ham" refers to the biblical story in which Ham, seeing his father drunk and naked, refused to turn away as his two brothers did. When Noah awoke, he cursed Ham and his son Canaan, supposedly causing a darker pigmentation in their descendants. This so-called curse has often been wrongly used to justify racism.

10 Pathos Pathos names the appeal to emotion. Cicero encouraged the use of pathos at the conclusion of an oration, but emotional appeals are of course more widely viable. Aristotle's Rhetoric contains a great deal of discussion of affecting the emotions, categorizing the kinds of responses of different demographic groups. Thus, we see the close relations between assessment of pathos and of audience. Pathos is also the category by which we can understand the psychological aspects of rhetoric. Criticism of rhetoric tends to focus on the overemphasis of pathos, emotion, at the expense of logos, the message.audience

11 Pathos in the Narrative Description from pages 5, 6: “He was a cruel man…” What do all of the details add up to?


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