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Into the Wild: A Rhetorical Analysis

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Joshua Pynn

on 21 October 2013

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Transcript of Into the Wild: A Rhetorical Analysis

Into the Wild: A Rhetorical Analysis
Joshua Pynn, Matthew Elliott, Julia Simpkins,
Alyssa Cave

What kinds of evidence does John Krakauer use in the novel, "Into the Wild", and how does the supporting evidence help to fulfill the purpose of the novel?
Rhetorical Appeals: Logos
Logos:
Chapter 3 page 15; At this time he is in Carthage, South Dakota. The author uses facts along with intricate details about the town. He first says “Carthage, South Dakota, population 274.” He leads from this into little details and imagery to display Carthage. He does this because in order to effectively display Chris' journey, he needs to have the facts and details that Chris went through. Throughout the first two paragraphs of chapter three, he spends the time only using detail.

Rhetorical Appeal: Pathos
Pathos:
Chapter 13; In chapter 13, Krakauer explicitly uses pathos. Chapter 13 talks about the family being struck with the death of Chris. “Chris and Carine were uncommonly close.” It goes on to state how Fish told Carine about Chris' death. The author includes this chapter to pull into the emotion of his audience. He captures us because we have a somewhat vague idea of the family relationship until we see how saddened Carine is. (“Ten months after Chris's death, Carine still grieves deeply for her brother.”

Rhetorical Arrangement Strategy
-Syntax-
In chapter 3, the author uses complex sentence structures. "Didn't matter what is was, he'd do it: hard physical labor, mucking rotten grain and rats out of the bottom of the hole-- jobs where you'd get so damn dirty you couldn't even tell what you looked like at the end of the day." he wrote the chapter this way to show the complexity of the main character, Chris. Chris was very intelligent, and he was always thinking and making situations harder than they needed to be.

Rhetorical Arrangement Strategy
-Diction-
In chapter 13, the author uses a formal word choice. "Two framed photographs occupy the mantel in Carine McCandless's beach home..." The effect of using this rhetorical strategy shows sophistication and maturity. Throught this chapter, the main idea is the way Carine mourns over her brother's death, and this type of language allows the reader to sense the seriousness of the topic.
EVIDENCE USED
Facts
The Population of Carthage- 274 people
Chris's prized novel, Tolstoy's "War and Peace"
Chris's successes in school
GPA- 3.72
Emory Graduate
His position as editor of the school newspaper, "The Emory Wheel"
The classes he took his last year of enrollment
Chris's beloved dog, a shetland sheepdog named Buckley
Chris's 1982 Datsun B210, the only car he would ever drive
Anecdotes
When Carine was told of Chris's Death
Her immediate reaction
The effect it has on her currently
Westerburg's account of Chris's odd behaviors
His obvious intelligence
His decision to roam the country alone
His incredible work ethic
The effect of his death on his mother, Billie
Her sense of regret and guilt
Why does Krakauer use these facts and statistics?
To help characterize Chris McCandless
The development of his character helps the reader understand his decisions
To establish the setting appropriately
Facts and figures bring the reader into the mindset of someone living during the time Chris was on his journey
To appeal through ethos to the audience
Knowing and supplying lots of information on the events leading up to Chris's death establishes the author as a reliable and trustworthy source
To develop the tone of the novel
The author's use of facts and figures show how he views the whole story as interesting, yet very serious and important.
E=mc
The Purpose of the Text
The overall purpose for Krakauer to write "Into the Wild" was to accurately and effectively tell the story of Chris McCandless, while also entertaining the reader enough that they continue reading.
The use of evidence such as facts and anecdotes is vital to the story, because the story, although it is also meant to entertain, is meant to inform the reader of true events that occurred. Krakauer effectively uses his facts and evidence to fulfill his purpose to inform the reader, while also keeping he or she entertained while doing so.
In Conclusion
Authors Purpose: To inform and entertain equally
The author uses evidence to support the accuracy of the events while also using it to entertain the reader
His complex syntax and formal diction help characterize Chris and establish a formal tone throughout the novel
Because of his accurate use of facts and anecdotes, the author appeals to the ethos of the audience by establishing himself as a trustworthy source who put lots of effort into the novel
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