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Introduction to Rhetoric

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1 Introduction to Rhetoric
Rhetoric, Devices and Appeals

2 Rhetoric The art of speaking or writing effectively

3 Rhetorical Features Authors who want to communicate ideas effectively use rhetorical features to intentionally influence audiences Features often include: Devices --> Language Tools Appeals --> Language Strategies

4 Rhetorical Devices Language Tools that author’s intentionally use for a desired effect. Focus Devices: Repetition Parallelism Loaded Language

5 Repetition Definition: Repeating words or phrases
Desired Effect(s): Emphasis, Reinforces He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation. He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands. He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

6 Parallelism Definition: Similarity of grammatical structure in a pair or series of related words, phrase or clauses Desired Effect(s): balance, order, clarity, rhythm For Quartering large bodies of armed troops among us: For protecting them, by a mock Trial, from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States: For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world: For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent: For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury: For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences

7 Loaded Language Definition: Language intended to elicit an emotional response Desired Effect(s): Emotional response He has plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.

8 Rhetorical Appeals Logos Pathos Ethos

9 Aristotle From Aristotle’s Rhetoric
Three Kinds of Persuasion: “Persuasion is achieved by the speaker's personal character when the speech is so spoken as to make us think him credible.[ethos] [...] Secondly, persuasion may come through the hearers, when the speech stirs their emotions.[pathos] [...] Thirdly, persuasion is effected through the speech itself when we have proved a truth or an apparent truth by means of the persuasive arguments suitable to the case in question.[logos] See Chapter 2 here:

10 Logos: appealing to logic
A logical appeal relies on factual evidence and seem to be objective. Examples Evidence from other sources Expert testimony Systematic Logic (e.g. Inductive and Deductive Reasoning)

11 Logos in Practice—it this logical?
Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security (locate and label on your text)

12 Pathos: appealing to emotion
Pathos is an appeal to your readers’ values and emotions. Examples: Loaded language, Personal examples or anecdotes, Objects of emotion (pets, family members, cars, etc.)

13 Pathos in Practice—is this emotional?
He has plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people. (locate and label on your text)

14 Ethos: creating an effective persona
Appeals to the audience’s view of the speaker Create an impression of sound sense, high moral character and benevolence/good will Appeals to the audience’s sense of trust and familiarity

15 Ethos in Practice When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

16 Summary Authors who want to communicate ideas effectively use rhetorical features to intentionally influence audiences Features often include rhetorical devices, or language tools used for clarity and effect rhetorical appeals, or language strategies used to influence audiences in specific ways.

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