RHETORICAL APPEALS Part of how you describe rhetorical strategies (along with style) Ethos Pathos Logos
ETHOS The ethical appeal, means to convince an audience of the author’s credibility or character.
PATHOS The emotional appeal, means to persuade an audience by appealing to their emotions.
LOGOS The appeal to logic, means to convince an audience by use of logic or reason.
AUTHOR’S PURPOSE The author’s reason for writing. What is the author attempting to achieve by writing?
TONE The writer’s attitude toward the text/subject matter. When identifying tone, use an adjective. Tone is created by the writer’s use of all of the other rhetorical strategies. Diction & Tropes Syntax & Schemes Details & Lack of Details
CONTEXT The circumstances that form the setting.
MAIN POINT What the author is trying to tell the reader.
DICTION The author’s choice of words. When analyzing diction, look for specific words or short phrases that seem stronger than the others. Diction is NEVER the entire sentence! Also, look for a pattern (or similarity) in the words the writer chooses (ex. Do the words imply sadness, happiness, etc?). This pattern helps to create a particular kind of diction.
DICTION CONTINUED This pattern can also include repetition of the same words or phrases. Repeating the same word or phrase helps the reader emphasize a point, feeling, etc. Effective diction is shaped by words that are clear, concrete, and exact. Good writers avoid words like pretty, nice, and bad because they are not specific enough. Instead, they rely on words that invoke a specific effect in order to bring the reader into the event being described.
SYNTAX The way an author chooses to join words into phrases, clauses, and sentences. Diction = One word Syntax = Words together
SYNTAX CONTINUED Schemes One aspect of syntax is schemes. Most English sentences follow a subject-verb-object pattern (ex. I went to the store.) Deviating from this pattern can serve to add emphasize to the author’s ideas. Sentence Length Another aspect of syntax is sentence length. Good writers will use a variety for emphasis. Short sentences – imply straightforward Long sentences – imply descriptive, detailed
STYLE The other way (besides rhetorical appeals) to analyze rhetorical strategies. The choices an author makes in language for effect.
DENOTATION The strict, literal, dictionary definition of a word, devoid of any emotion, attitude, or color.
CONNOTATION The non-literal, associative meaning of a word; the implied, suggested meaning.
JUXTAPOSITION the act or placement of two things (usually abstract concepts) near each other
PARALLELISM a balance within one or more sentences of similar phrases or clauses that have the same grammatical structure
TROPE A figure of speech using words in nonliteral ways such as metaphor, simile, etc…
SIMILE Comparison of two unlike things using “like” or “as”
METAPHOR Comparison of two unlike things without using “like” or “as”
PERSONIFICATION Giving living qualities to non-living things.
HYPERBOLE The use of exaggeration; not to be taken literally.
ALLUSION A figure of speech that makes a reference to people, places, events, literary work, myths, or works of art, either directly or by implication.
ALLITERATION The repetition of a particular sound (usually consonants) in a series of words or phrases.
ANTIMETABOLE The repetition of words in successive clauses, but in transposed order (e.g., "I know what I like, and I like what I know").
ARCHAIC DICTION The use of old fashioned or outdated language
CHIASMUS The figure of speech in which two or more clauses are related to each other through a reversal of structures in order to make a larger point; that is, the clauses display inverted parallelism. Example: "Ask not what your country can do for you — ask what you can do for your country."
COLLOQUIALISM A word or phrase that is employed in conversational or informal language but not in formal speech or formal writing.
HORTATORY Marked by exhortation or strong urging - as in a very encouraging speech.