Presentation on theme: "What Is Rhetoric? Part One How to develop an argument and explain your ideas and evidence to the reader. Writing Notes #3."— Presentation transcript:
What Is Rhetoric? Part One How to develop an argument and explain your ideas and evidence to the reader. Writing Notes #3
The definition Rhetoric: Our textbook defines rhetoric as "the study and the art of using language effectively." Rhetoric encompasses the art of analyzing the language choices authors and speakers use to create meaningful and persuasive texts, texts worth reading or hearing. Quotes on Rhetoric
Definition Con’t. Furthermore, rhetoric encompasses using techniques to create meaningful texts. Simply stated, rhetoric makes persuasion possible. Ex: A simple persuasive statement using no rhetorical strategies- “I like dogs, and you should like dogs.” Now with rhetorical strategies- “Dogs are great, and compared to alligators, they are the most faithful to their human owners.”
The Rhetorical Transaction/Triangle According to Aristotle, the rhetorical transaction consists of three basic components: logos - the author's ability to use logic and reason in the text. ethos - the author’s credibility regarding the ability to trust them with information. pathos - the author's ability to appeal to a specified audience through the text.
Rhetorical Transaction/Triangle Con’t. These components are suggested by the rhetorical triangle or Aristotelian triad:
Ethos/Author This part of the Rhetorical Triangle deals with how well an audience is willing to trust the author before even entering discourse. How can an audience pre-judge an author’s work, or persuasive argument presented in a work? Past work, education, and noted achievements are some examples of how a writer’s fact-based reputation can influence an audience. People may be willing to read an article on flu prevention if the author is a documented doctor. But an author without the same credentials may be shunned by readers.
Ethos/Author So how, as a student, can I apply this to my writing? You have probably experienced writing prompts where you were asked to write about a topic that you had just learned about from an accompanying article. What level of background knowledge do teachers actually expect students to have? Most teachers have this expectation, for students to know little about some random writing prompts. What they are looking for, future audiences in further education or some careers included, is a respect for general facts and humility towards the audience’s own knowledge. This includes calling the sky red or stating, “Everyone knows unicorns smell funny.” Or addressing the audience disrespectfully. So remember to: -Know your audience (who are you writing to? Why are you writing to this particular audience?) -Respect your audience (this includes the audience’s ability to have an opposing opinion, and to uphold the truth and not pursue false or unsupportable information)
Logos/Word Logos refers to how an author uses reasoning skills to construct an argument. Simply stated, authors should develop an argument that makes logical sense. So remember to: -Have a clearly stated purpose that informs the reader (thesis statement, which can be stated directly, or implied indirectly). -Follow through on that clearly stated purpose with a response that fulfills the goals of the purpose. -Put together the different parts of the argument in a logical order (paragraphs use transitions, do not disrupt the ability of the reader to read and understand the argument).
Pathos/Audience Aristotle’s last main point regarding rhetoric is pathos, or the ability of the writer to engage the reader on an emotional level in order to sway the reader’s opinion. This item can refer to the creative language or imagery that the writer uses to engage the reader. The writer could also make emotional pleas or calls for action that ask the reader to consider emotional aspects of the writer’s theme.
Putting the three together… While there is much more to discuss with rhetoric, we must address the final question of how to use knowledge of the rhetorical triangle’s three points in unity. Certain tasks will allow the reader to show qualities each triangle point at the same point. If a writer uses researched information from credible sources, then the audience will be more willing to consider writer’s ideas while presenting logical data. If a writer uses a paragraph structure that orders the presentation of sub-topics and support in a creative and readable format, then the reader will be more engaged with the writing while addressing the logical structure of the argument. If you want to persuade your audience (or at least convince your teacher that you deserve a passing grade): -Use factual information and standard grammar -Make sense (unless your point is to not make sense) -Respect your audience