Presentation on theme: "AP Language Rhetorical Analysis 2010 Exam: Banneker Letter"— Presentation transcript:
1 AP Language Rhetorical Analysis 2010 Exam: Banneker Letter Becky TalkCushing H.S.Cushing, TX
2 Read and analyze the prompt: Benjamin Banneker, the son of former slaves, was a farmer, astronomer, mathematician, surveyor, and author. In 1791 he wrote to Thomas Jefferson, framer of the Declaration of Independence and secretary of state to President George Washington. Read the following excerpt from the letter and write an essay that analyzes how Banneker uses rhetorical strategies to argue against slavery. Look at the last sentence: “analyze how Banneker uses rhetorical strategies to argue against slavery.” Concrete part of prompt:__________How does Banneker use rhetorical strategies____________________________________ Abstract part of prompt:______How does Banneker argue against slavery_________________________________________
3 diction, imagery, details, figurative language, syntax What does the term “rhetorical strategies” mean? As you read the passage, focus on the patterns of language you observe. All of the following strategies deal with the way an author accomplishes his/her purpose.diction, imagery, details, figurative language, syntaxthe appeals: logos, ethos, pathosstructure/organization
4 How does Banneker use rhetorical strategies to argue against slavery? As you read, try to determine Banneker’s main argument, or his logos.Sir, suffer me to recall to your mind that time in which the arms and tyranny of the British Crown were exerted with every powerful effort in order to reduce you to a State of Servitude, look back I entreat you on the variety of dangers to which you were exposed; reflect on that time in which every human aid appeared unavailable, and in which even (5)hope and fortitude wore the aspect of inability to the conflict and you cannot but be led to a serious and grateful sense of your miraculous and providential preservation; you cannot but acknowledge that the present freedom and tranquility which you enjoy you have mercifully received and that it is the peculiar blessing of Heaven.This sir, was a time in which you clearly saw into the injustice of a state of slavery and in (10)which you had just apprehensions of the horrors of its condition, it was now, sir, that your abhorrence thereof was so excited, that you publickly held forth this true and valuable doctrine, which is worthy to be recorded and remembered in all succeeding ages. “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, and that they are endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the (15)pursuit of happiness.”suffer--allow
5 Here, sir, was a time in which your tender feelings for yourselves had engaged you thus to declare, you were then impressed with proper ideas of the great valuation of liberty and the free possession of those blessings to which you were entitled by nature, but sir, how pitiable is it to reflect that although you were so fully convinced of the benevolence of the Father of (20)mankind and of his equal and impartial distribution of those rights and privileges which he had conferred upon them, that you should at the same time counteract his mercies in detaining by fraud and violence so numerous a part of my brethren under groaning captivity and cruel oppression, that you should at the same time be found guilty of that most criminal act which you professedly detested in others with respect to yourselves.(25)Sir, I suppose that your knowledge of the situation of my brethren is too extensive to need a recital here; neither shall I presume to prescribe methods by which they may be relieved, otherwise than by recommending to you and all others to wean yourselves from those narrow prejudices which you have imbibed with respect to them and as Job proposed to his friends, “put your souls in their souls stead,” thus shall your hearts be enlarged with (30)kindness and benevolence towards them, and thus shall you need neither the direction of myself or others, in which manner to proceed herein.Job—In the Bible, Job is a righteous man who endures much suffering.
6 Examine Banneker’s Argument Against Slavery Logos—Banneker’s Main Argument Banneker develops an analogy or a series of parallels: the_slavery, tyranny, State of Servitude______________the British crown tried to impose on Jefferson Vs. the _same as above_______________Jefferson is now trying to impose on others
7 Look closely at the first three paragraphs: Banneker’s appeal to logos in the first paragraph:Jefferson experienced “tyranny” at the hands of the British Crown.He (and by extension, all of America) was subjected to a state of servitude.His appeal to logos in the second paragraph:During this time, Jefferson saw the injustice of a state of slavery and understood the horrors of slavery as expressed in Jefferson’s own words: we hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, and that they are endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”His appeal to logos in the third paragraph:Also during this time, Jefferson was impressed with proper ideas of the great valuation of liberty. However, his condition became, according to Banneker, pitiable because he had committed the crime of detaining by fraud and violence those fellow Americans who happened to be a race other than white.
8 Writing a Body Paragraph A well-developed body paragraph should consist of an assertion, textual evidence, and analysis/commentary.Assertion: a particular insight you have about how Banneker argues against slaveryTextual evidence: quotations or paraphrase from the textAnalysis: further explanation and elaboration of the assertionAnalysis, along with your assertion, is a crucial element in each paragraph. In analysis, you explore the possibilities which connect your textual evidence to the author’s meaning. This is the place to be creative, to allow your mind to forge new ideas which express the author’s intent in using a particular rhetorical device..
9 Here is a sample body paragraph containing all three of these elements: Banneker employs antithetical ideas to argue that Jefferson says onething about human rights but does another.In the first paragraph, Banneker reminds Jefferson of his “miraculous and providential preservation” from slavedom to Britain, of his “present freedom and tranquility” and his “peculiar blessing[s] of Heaven” in living in a free country. He contrasts these ideas in the third paragraph by charging Jefferson with “detaining by fraud and violence” those who were slaves “under groaning captivityand cruel oppression.”Banneker employs a stark contrast in terms. The first paragraph describes Jefferson’s great blessings of freedom, the third Jefferson’s refusal to allow slaves the same freedoms. Banneker’s intention in using the antithetical phrases is to reveal Jefferson’s duplicity and hypocritical ways—a man who could pen the inspiring words of the Declaration of Independence but could also deny freedom to one group of people.assertiontextual evidenceanalysis
10 Here is another body paragraph: Banneker’s tone throughout the letter is deferential and respectful of Jefferson. In arguing against slavery, Banneker addresses Jefferson with terms of respect. He begins by addressing him as “Sir,” hoping that Jefferson would “suffer” him to remind him of a time when his view of slavery was different. In all four paragraphs of the letter, in fact, Banneker refers to Jefferson as “sir.” Banneker is careful to address Jefferson with respect, according to Jefferson’s exalted position in the nation. Banneker accuses Jefferson of “criminal” acts in this letter, but before he does, he must establish the proper tone of deference to the writer of The Declaration of In- dependence. His respectful tone helps assure that Jefferson will not dismiss his letter out of hand but regard its message seriously.assertiontextual evidenceanalysis