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Rhetoric: from roots to effects (Honors)

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Megan Meyers

on 14 December 2015

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Transcript of Rhetoric: from roots to effects (Honors)

What is rhetoric?
Rhetorical Device- How are they trying to persuade us?
a technique that an author or speaker uses to convey to the listener or reader a meaning, with the goal of persuading him or her towards considering a topic from a different perspective
an art that aims to improve the capability of writers or speakers to inform, persuade, or motivate particular audiences in specific situations
Rhetorical Device: Allusion
A short informal reference to a famous person, work or event. It is important to stress that the referent of an allusion be generally well-known. Sources include history, myth, and the Bible. Contemporary instances of allusion extend to media created content, events, and persons -- even to the extent that a character in one movie may use an allusion in referring to a fictional, but nonetheless well-known, event or person from another movie. Popular music lyrics are a further source of allusion.
Rhetoric: the art
of persuasion

The circumstances in which you communicate.
Rhetorical Situation: Why are they trying to persuade us?

-Your culture, personal characteristics and interests affect what you write about and how you write it.
-Factors which can affect your writing include:
Your age
Your experiences
Your gender
Your location
Your political beliefs
Your parents and peers
Your education
Audience: To Whom are you Writing?
Many of the same factors which affect the writer also affect the audience:
Social class
Past experience
Norton Textbook:
Writer (rhetor):
Rhetorical Style- How are they trying to persuade us?
The stylistic choices the author makes in order to communicate their argument. Style is the way writing is dressed up (or down) to fit the specific context, purpose, or audience. Word choice, sentence fluency, and the writer's voice — all contribute to the style of a piece of writing.
"Iran and ISIS are competing for the crown of militant Islam. Both want to impose a militant Islamic empire first on the region and then on the entire world. They just disagree among themselves who will be the ruler of that empire. In this deadly
game of thrones
, there’s no place for America or for Israel.
- Benjamin Netanyahu, Third Joint Session of Congress Address
Rhetorical Device: Anaphora
The repetition of the same word or words at the beginning of successive phrases, clauses, or sentences
I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed:
"We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal."
I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at a table of brotherhood.
I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state, sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.
I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.
I have a dream today.
Rhetorical Device: Anecdote
A short narrative of an interesting, amusing or biographical incident; Used in persuasive essays as one method of developing pathos. It can also be used as a "hook" to draw a reader into a story.

The young mother was ready for a few minutes of relaxation after a long and demanding day. However, her young daughter had other plans for her mother's time.

"Read me a story, Mom," the little girl requested. "Give Mommy a few minutes to relax and unwind. Then I'll be happy to read you a story," pleaded the mother.

The little girl was insistent that Mommy read to her now. With a stroke of genius, the mother tore off the back page of the magazine she was reading. It contained a full-page picture of the world. As she tore it into several pieces, Mom asked her daughter to put the picture together and then she would read her a story. Surely this would buy her considerable relaxing moments.

A short time later, the little girl announced the completion of her puzzle project. To her astonishment, she found the world picture completely assembled. When she asked her daughter how she managed to do it so quickly, the little girl explained that on the reverse side of the page was the picture of a little girl. "You see, Mommy, when I got the little girl together, the whole world came together."

Each of us has the responsibility to put our world together. It starts by getting ourselves put together. We can become better parents, friends, spouses, employees, and employers. The first step is changing our attitude.

Rhetorical Device: Antithesis
Clear contrasting relationship between two ideas by joining them together, often in parallel structure.
“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way.”- A Tale of Two Cities

Give every man thy ear, but few thy voice.
Rhetorical Device: Aphorism
A brief statement of principle; an adage. It serves to each a moral or philosophical truth.
-Youth is a blunder; Manhood a struggle; Old age regret. [Benjamin Disraeli]
-The man who removes a mountain begins by carrying away small stones. [William Faulkner]
-Life’s Tragedy is that we get old too soon and wise too late. [Benjamin Franklin]
-Yesterday is but today’s memory, and tomorrow is today’s dream. [Khalil Gibran]
-The simplest questions are the hardest to answer. [Northrop Frye]
-Words are, of course, the most powerful drug used by mankind. [Rudyard Kipling]
- An apple a day keeps the doctor away
- The early bird gets the worm
Rhetorical Device: Appositive
A noun, or noun substitute, placed next to the original noun as a means of describing the original noun. (Don't be worried if your response is, "WHAT??").

*Then I tend to his minor wounds, the burns, the stings, which are showing improvement.
—Suzanne Collins, The Hunger Games

*Mexico City, the biggest city in the world, has many interesting archaeological sites.

*Our nation, The United States of America, will not be defeated.

Rhetorical Device: Asyndeton
Consists of omitting conjunctions between words, phrases, or clauses.
I came, I saw, I conquered.

“… that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.“
— Abraham Lincoln, Gettysburg Address, 19 November 1863

“Duty, Honor, Country. Those three hallowed words reverently dictate what you ought to be, what you can be, what you will be. They are your rallying points: to build courage when courage seems to fail; to regain faith when there seems to be little cause for faith; to create hope when hope becomes forlorn.”

— General Douglas MacArthur, West Point Academy, New York, 12 May 1962
Rhetorical Device: Ethos

Part of Aristotle's rhetorical triangle. The credibility of the author.
"As a doctor, I am qualified to tell you that this course of treatment will likely generate the best results."

"My three decades of experience in public service, my tireless commitment to the people of this community, and my willingness to reach across the aisle and cooperate with the opposition, make me the ideal candidate for your mayor."

Rhetorical Device: Pathos
Part of Aristotle's rhetorical triangle. The appeal to emotion.
Today, our fellow citizens, our way of life, our very freedom came under attack in a series of deliberate and deadly terrorist acts. The victims were in airplanes or in their offices: secretaries, business men and women, military and federal workers, moms and dads, friends and neighbors. Thousands of lives were suddenly ended by evil, despicable acts of terror. The pictures of airplanes flying into buildings, fires burning, huge -- huge structures collapsing have filled us with disbelief, terrible sadness, and a quiet, unyielding anger. These acts of mass murder were intended to frighten our nation into chaos and retreat. But they have failed. Our country is strong.
- George Bush's September 11, 2001 speech
Rhetorical Device: Logos
A part of Aristotle's rhetorical triangle. The appeal to logic (numbers, facts, statistics).
"All men are mortal. Socrates is a man. Therefore, Socrates is mortal."
Aristotle's The Art of Rhetoric

FACTS- These are valuable because they are not debatable; they represent the truth
EXAMPLES- These include events or circumstances that your audience can relate to their life
PRECEDENTS- These are specific examples (historical and personal) from the past
AUTHORITY- The authority must be timely (not out-dated), and it must be qualified to judge the topic
DEDUCTIVE/INDUCTIVE- Deductive reasoning is when you pick apart evidence to reach conclusions, and inductive reasoning is when you add logical pieces to the evidence to reach conclusions.
Rhetorical Device: Litotes
An understatement used deliberately, or a double negative.
*They do not seem the happiest couple around.
*The ice cream was not too bad.
*New York is not an ordinary city.
*Your comments on politics are not useless.
*You are not as young as you used to be.
*I cannot disagree with your point of view.
*I am not unmindful that some of you have come here out of great trials and tribulations.
Rhetorical Device: Fallacy

A statement or an argument based on a false or invalid reference. The goals of rational criticism can be formulated by three more or less distinct questions.
(1) Is the reasoning well-formulated?
(2) Is the reasoning well-connected?
(3) Is the reasoning well-established?
Types of fallacies:
Rhetorical Situation: Exigence
An issue, problem, or situation that causes or prompts someone to write or speak in a persuasive manner.
What are common examples of exigence?
Rhetorical Style: Bombastic Language (bombast)

Using long and difficult words, usually to make people think you know more than you do, although it may also help establish ethos.
Rhetorical Style: Colloquialism
Informal words and expressions that are more suitable for use in speech than in writing.
Rhetorical Style: Connotation vs. Denotation
Connotation: the emotional association with a word

Denotation: the dictionary definition of a word
What effect does the difference between connotation and denotation have on a persuasive text?
Rhetorical Style: Diction
Word choice in a speech or writing to convey or enhance meaning.
What words does George Bush seem to use purposefully in order to persuade the American audience to engage in The War on Terrorism?
Rhetorical Style: Hyperbole
An exaggeration for emphasis or effect.
"You know, there's a lot of debate going around, 'Who had the best team -- the ones in the '60s or in the one in '92?' I don't know who had the best team, but I know the team in 1960 was a hell of a lot tougher than we were. Because I couldn't imagine the '92 team getting into covered wagons for 8 days, going across the country, jumping in the Atlantic Ocean, swimming for 6 days, then walking 3000 miles to the Coliseum in Rome -- for a dollar a day. Thank you."
Larry Byrd -- Remarks at the 2010 Naismith Hall of Fame 1992 "Dream Team" Induction
Rhetorical Style: Irony
Language that implies that the opposite of what is actually stated id what is intended.
How to be as persuasive as Lincoln:
Rhetorical Style: Jargon
The specialized or technical language used by a trade, profession, or similar group.
What types of jargon are used regularly?
Rhetorical Device: Paradox
A seemingly contradictory statement that may nonetheless be true; exhibiting an inexplicable or contradictory aspect of truth
‘The Golden Rule is that there is no Golden Rule.'

‘I can resist everything except temptation.'

‘If a thing is worth doing, it's worth doing badly.'
Rhetorical Style: Parallel Structure
Usage of the same pattern of words, often to show that two or more ideas have the same importance.
“We will be able to work together, to pray together, to struggle together, to go to jail together, to stand up for freedom together.” - MLK
"Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe to assure the survival and the success of liberty."- JFK
Rhetorical Style: Syntax
The arrangement of words in a sentence, including the length of sentences.
Rhetorical Style: Tone
The author's attitude about the subject.
Tone Words:

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