Rhetorical Analysis Paper
Tramy Quach Professor Knapp English 100A, Section 6 Final Draft 03/06/13 RHETORICAL ANALYSIS PAPER Introduction Rhetorical strategy is a type of method for writers to manipulate their writing to purpose an idea or influence the reader. Narration, description, and exemplification are some of the rhetorical appeals writer use to grab the reader’s attention. And invoke strong reaction out of the reader. Apart from these strategies, many writers use Aristotle’s appeals of Logos, Ethos, and Pathos to persuade the reader. Logos is an appeal to the audience’s logic and reason.
Pathos is an appeal to the audience’s sentiments and emotions. Ethos is an appeal to the authority or reputation of the speaker. Logos is an appeal to the audience’s logic and reason. In my rhetorical analysis, I will be analyzing an article by Heather Mattern called, “Learning to Breathe”. In this article, Mattern proposes increasing physical activity such as running, , consuming raw foods, and adopting a positive mentality to curb depression. Mattern’s article brings awareness to health educators, like myself, who focuses on the study of health related issues like food, nutrition, and prevention.
Through the use of use pathos and logos appeals, as well as narration, classifying and diving, and exemplifications to do what? Pathos Through her article, Mattern appeals to our emotions by using vivid descriptions of depression in order to get her reader to sympathize and gain awareness of how serious depression can affect our mood. In the article, Mattern uses pathos as an appeal to the reader when she explains, “I learned… about one in every eight women could expect to develop clinical depression during their lifetime. Many of these women I know.
They are my friends, mothers popping anti-depressant pills and smiling numbly with an artificial happiness. They know no other way” (Mattern). Here, Mattern is successful in getting her readers to briefly acquire a visual sense of how depression can eat at one’s personal happiness. . This is especially a powerful tool to influence readers if the reader knows anyone close or a loved one who has dealt with depression. Additionally, through describing the smile as “artificial”, it stirs up a serious emotions of being empty, without purpose.
Furthermore, in her article she writes, “… my mind held me a prisoner” (Mattern) to enable her readers to gain the mindset of being trapped, which appeals to our fears of being helpless and vulnerable. She later describes her mind as a “hostage” and referrers to her depression as a “demon. ” Her word choice of “demon” and “hostage” to describes her illness are words that readers are fearful of. In doing such, Mattern wants her readers to now associate these feelings of being helpless and afraid with depression.
Mattern used pathos appeals in her article to attempts to persuade her reader by stirring the emotions emptiness, fear and vulnerability in hopes that her reader will see and feel what depression really is, a serious disease Logos Another strategy the author use is Logos; it refers to any attempt to appeal to the intellect, the general meaning of “logical argument. ” Everyday arguments rely heavily on ethos and pathos, but academic arguments rely more on logos. These arguments engage readers or observers by appealing to reason, logic, and data.
An example that was used in the article “…you would never know that she had struggled with years of depression. She cured her depression without medication” (Mattern). The author is referring to her friend Beth, who inspired Mattern to conduct her own personal prescription for her depression. Beth is an influential example of curing her own depression. She explains to Mattern that her secret is running and veggies. Beth makes the time early in the morning before her family wakes up, and gets moving. Beth finds the time in the day to give back to her body and mind.
Beth is an excellent example of curing depression the right way without any artificial chemicals or drugs. Another an illustration Mattern use in her article, “… I listed three challenges, all-starting with Rs, the three Rs that were going to help me: running regularly, raw foods, and right thinking with gratitude. Each of these has been proven to reduce stress and increasing endorphins. Endorphins are a happy chemical – neurotransmitters that are produced in the brain to reduce both stress and pain. They work in much the same way as an anti-depressant does” (Mattern).
Here the author uses facts to prove her conduction with the three Rs to reduce stress and pain. Logos strategies has played a magnificent role in the article because it explained the messages and created a better understanding for the reader. Logos strategies was used successfully because the author send a message to the reader that depression could be cure with easy simple steps instead of prescription medication. As well as, using facts and examples to illustration her ideas. Narrations Narrations are another type of strategy that is used in many articles.
They are used to capture an image for the reader to relate and make them feel comfortable about what they are reading. In different articles they use narration to give examples on what they are trying to present. They use past experiences or third person stories to create a bond with the reader. In the article, Mattern uses narration by having a story about her difficulty waking up in the morning. Mattern mentions, “It was hard at first, alarm clock going off at six o’clock and feet touching an icy cold floor. Bones chilled, spine stiff with goose bumps. The battle was on each day, blankets tempting me to remain warm in their embrace.
I pressed on. Running got me out of bed and I forced a smile onto my face” (Mattern). Mattern used marvelous detail in her narration that it was simple to understand and got the message across. This narration delivers a message to the readers so they could relate with this difficulty. The battle that everyone face of waking up early in the morning to do something productive instead of sleeping in a warm cozy bed. The reason why narration was affective in this article because Mattern was able to create a visual story allowing the reader to have some sense of struggle that the audience could all relate to.
Classifying and Dividing Classification and Division is defined, “ an important rhetorical strategy when the writer wants to analyze and then group similar items or divide one item up into parts” (course reader). This approach allows Mattern to organize her ideas and break into certain parts giving the reader no stress in reading her article and makes it easier for the author to address the main points of each subject in great details. Mattern’s article is divided into four parts: depression, running, raw foods, right thinking, and write your own personal prescription.
The reader can find certain areas they are interested in or refrain certain areas that they are not interested in. She is able to illustrates a story off each part and give insightful information. Mattern is able to make this so effective that the words are not hard to understand and everything flows with each passage. As we can see Division and classification is used smoothly in the passage so that the reader can understand. As a result, the method of organizing the article has made it easier for the author to inform the reader about creating a healthy lifestyle.
Exemplifications Last but not least, exemplification was used in the article. This strategy gives examples for enhancing the idea. In an exemplification writing it starts with the main idea, opinion, or belief and then gives a few examples to illustrate the main idea. For example, “I kept noticing the same two themes: eating a healthy diet consisting of lots of raw foods and an adequate amount of exercise. Since my friend had been so successful with her running, I decided that I would give that a try first” (Mattern).
The author did research about depression and noticed that eating healthy as well as getting the right amount of exercise was important factors for a health lifestyle. Mattern also uses her friend Beth as an example of turning her life around. Beth also suffered from depression but cured it with running and veggies. Now she is a living influential example to Mattern and many others who suffers from the same problem. Conclusions Overall, understanding rhetorical situation can help contribute to strong, audience focused, and well organized writing.
Mattern uses pathos and logos appeals, as well as narration, classifying and diving, and exemplifications as her rhetorical strategies. Mattern did a great job using these strategies extensively in her article. The writing was very detailed; she gave emotional and positive effects to the reader and even made the article inspiring and motivating to read. This article you can see how rhetorical is such a great strategy. We apply these strategies each day of our lives in our essays or journals. There are many different type of writings that are presented in books, newspapers or articles.
Rhetorical Strategies are just one of the technique that help captures the readers. By doing this rhetorical analysis paper, I feel extremely certain in understanding these rhetorical strategies. This paper has help me become more aware about writing techniques. It also allowed me to conclude the roles of each rhetorical strategy that they all play an important role in producing clear communications through writing. Since, I have great experience with the rhetorical strategies; I am now ready to take on the challenges that may approach me!