Rhetorical Analysis

For this assignment you will write a rhetorical analysis of a text of your choosing.

Rhetorical Analysis

A rhetorical analysis of a text examines a text rhetorically. The meaning of the word text depends on how creative you want to get. A text can be a book, article, consumer product, movie, advertisement, or commercial, to name a few. For this assignment you will pick a text, define, describe, and analyze the rhetorical context and/or argument the text is making. All texts have an author or authors and are created with a purpose. A rhetorical analysis helps us to understand the purpose it was created for and what it is saying or arguing.

Consider the ethos, pathos, and logos of the text. What appeals are being used in the text you are analyzing? Ethos – appeals to character. Pathos – emotional appeals. Logos – appeals to reason and evidence.

What to look at for a Rhetorical Analysis

  • Consider the topic.
  • Consider the audiences of the text.
  • Consider the author.
  • Consider the medium and design.
  • Examine the language.
  • Consider the occasion.

For more help with the list, look at the table on page 229 of your textbook, Questions for a Rhetorical Analysis.

rhetoric-table

Be specific when referring to your text. Have the text in front of you if you can. Then you can reference specifics and avoid generalizations.

Requirements

  • 1000 to 1250 words in length
  • Works Cited
  • Image of text or the advertisement itself as featured image
  • Clear thesis and introduction
  • Use of ethos, pathos, and logos
  • well-supported claims
  • Specific references and details from the text
  • A conclusion tying together your analysis

Use Cohen (p. 221) and Nance (p. 232) as models to follow. For structure of the essay you can also look at page 230, Creating Structure.

Remember, this is a formal assignment, make sure you are using appropriate tone and diction! Talk about the text, not what you think about the text!

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