Monday, August 07, 2006

Blog de Final

In the past four weeks I think I've learned a number of key elements which factor into effective rhetoric. First off, I feel that I'm much more able to critically analyze a piece of text and deduce the the intended audience, which usually serves as the framework for further analysis of the author's illocution and perlocution. Also from that, I think that I am much better at knowing whether a rhetorical text would prove to be effective or ineffective and why. If I believe that the text was ineffective, I can usually locate the flaws in either the actual argument or the presentation of the argument, which allows me to better prepare my dissent.
In the realm of rhetorical writing I think I've improved a amount as well. I was trained to follow a very concrete and ordered 5-paragraph structure for writing, but I've realized that this format isn't ideal for persuasive writing. Stating your thesis too early usually causes individuals who do not share your viewpoint to be turned off quickly, so I've altered my style to hopefully induce my readers to be more susceptible to at least hearing my side of the argument.
I think I've also taught myself how to better construct each individual claim that I bring up by putting the claim in context, providing evidence for the claim, and most importantly interpreting that evidence so that it indisputably supports my claim. I realize that that is the most important part of rhetorical writing, because any "evidence" that you use to support your premises can be interpreted in a number of different ways, and your argument only proves effective if you can show how the evidence does support what your saying.
That's the jist. I'm sure I've learned more, but I think those are the key concepts that I'm now familiar with.


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