Rhetorical Essay – “The Human Cost of an Illiterate Society”


Write Rhetorical Essay – “The Human Cost of an Illiterate Society”

Writing Prompt:  Many of the essays we read in this unit are not just argumentative essays, but essays that invite you to lose yourself in the stories they relate and the details they provide. They’re essays that have a purpose, but utilize different rhetorical strategies to get their point across.  In a well-organized 1000 – 1,250 word essay, identify and analyze the rhetorical strategies of an essay we have read for this unit.  Your work should demonstrate a clear understanding of Aristotelian rhetoric, how the essay works, and contain a thesis statement that explains and discusses the essay’s overall effectiveness in achieving its purpose. This is a paper that asks you to demonstrate your comprehension of the essay’s main points and provide an opinion about how effective you think the essay is working. A successful rhetorical analysis should provide the reader with your opinion about the essay’s effectiveness, and offer an analysis of different aspects of the essay. Some starting points: Keep these elements in mind. These are not questions you need to answer, but you might consider focusing on some of them. •   Rhetorical triangle: audience, purpose, author – how does the author address each side of the rhetorical triangle?  How effectively does he/she do this? •   Voice: What type of voice (formal, casual, humorous, etc) does the author employ, and how effective is this in relaying his/her message? •   Style: Does the author employ particular stylistic devices, such as figurative language, storytelling, repetition, satire, or analogies to communicate his/her point? •   Evidence: What kind of evidence does the author use to build up his/her argument? Is there anything deficient about any of the evidence used? •   Assumptions: What assumptions does the author make about the audience’s values and beliefs? •   Choices: Why does the writer make the choices he or she does? What could he have said instead? Your short essay should contain a thesis – an opinion about how effective you find the essay you’re evaluating to be—as well as an analysis of specific persuasive strategies.  Your body paragraphs should address a specific strategy that the author employs in the original essay, and offer your viewpoint about how effective this is.  Form •   Your essay should demonstrate your knowledge of MLA in-text parenthetical citation knowledge for this essay, and include a proper works cited page.

Write Rhetorical Essay – “The Human Cost of an Illiterate Society”

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