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Class 3 Winter 2016

Page history last edited by Jane Asher 8 years, 4 months ago


Today's Agenda

Email Etiquette/Syllabus Quiz 

Introduction to Rhetoric 

Discuss Mandela’s speech (page 28 in WOW)

Paragraphing (CWH Ch.5) 

Writing Process (WOW Ch. 3) 




Read WOW pgs. 61-71 


Collect Contracts and surveys

Take Email Etiquette/syllabus Quiz





WOW Chapter 2


Rhetoric is tool for getting what you




Page 21:

Rhetoric: using language effectively, no matter what purpose

     the way you use language to entertain, inform, or persuade



  • Aristotle "defined rhetoric as the art of finding the best available means of persuasion in any situation."







In order for rhetoric to be successful, it must include three related elements.


The Rhetorical Triangle (audience, author/speaker, message)




Audience: pg. 23 Know thy audience.

For your writing in this class, who is your audience? How will you best communicate to this audience?


Purpose: pg. 24 Understand thy purpose (purpose-what you hope to accomplish by putting something in writing)

In English 1180, your purpose is initially shaped by the nature of the assignment. Then you will further develop your purpose when you plug your chosen topics into the prescribed assignments.


The book identifies 3 general writing purposes:

  • To express
  • to inform
  • to persuade


You'll be doing a bit of all of these in each essay that you write.



Understanding Genre


Writing purposes are also determined by the genre of the assignment


Genre: pgs. 24-25 A specific format for writing often determined by audience and purpose


Exigence: A situation or circumstance that makes you want to communicate something to someone.

-something that requires immediate action





So, how do we successfully use rhetoric?


How do we persuade our audience?


What are the tools?


These artistic appeals are the backbone of rhetoric:

  • Pathos
  • Ethos
  • Logos




Rhetoric often takes place through the use of one more of the artistic appeals:


 1. pathos (persuasion that manipulates or exploits an audience's emotions or affective capacities)

This kind of appeal can be very effective if it’s not over-done, especially if your topic is an emotional one. Because your audience has emotions as well as intellect, your argument must seek to engage the audience emotionally. However, using emotional appeal alone is not as effective as when it is used in conjunction with logical and/or ethical appeals.



2.  ethos (persuasion based on the character, expertise, or ethics of the speaker)

This appeal involves convincing your audience that you are intelligent and can be trusted. Writers cannot simply say to their audience "I can be trusted because I'm smart and a good person." This appeal is perhaps the most difficult to establish; you have to prove yourself by demonstrating that you understand what you are arguing because:

you are providing

  • personal experience or
  • know someone else who has personal experience,

you are using expert support (or you are demonstrate that you yourself are an expert)

  • through extensive research,
  • through up-to-date research
  • through recognized authorities in the field (this will also help to prevent your appeal from seeming too personal),

you are using appropriate writing style


you are treating your audience with respect by

  • establishing some common ground
    • Find some mutual ground for both sides of the argument by acknowledging that your opinion and the opinion of the opposite side agree on at least one aspect. This is essential in establishing your ethos (or credibility) and your ability to treat the topic fairly.
  • However, be careful not to over-do this; remember which side you are supporting.



3.  logos (persuasion based on "logical" reasoning and often quantifiable grounds and evidence)

You appeal to logic when you rely on your audience’s intelligence and when you offer credible evidence to support your argument. That evidence includes:

  • 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.


pages 88-90 in Handbook


Inductive Reasoning-moving from specific facts, observations, or experiences to a general conclusion

Making Inferences-making valid statements about the unknown based on what is known or generally accepted

Deductive Reasoning-moves from generalization believed to be true or self-evident to a more specific conclusion

     Page 89: syllogism example


Example #1:  The College Professor/teacher  




Commercial Examples for Identifying Artistic Appeals:


1. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BqpJvey-7-s


2. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yg6bZSM48vU


Bruce Campbell "Old Spice" commercial - Hungry Like The Wolf



3. https://www.youtube.com/user/verizon



Examples of communication acts that rely heavily on pathos? ethos? logos?


Thinking about genre/audience and what artistic appeals to highlight.

     dependent on purpose







Rhetorical Situation (WOW page 32)


-an appreciation of the social circumstances that call rhetorical events into being and that orchestrate the course of those events

-each act of communication is anything but self-contained

-each communication is a response to other communications and other social practices

-communications, and social practices more generally, are considered to reflect the attitudes and values of the communities that sustain them


Generally speaking, the rhetorical situation can be understood as the circumstances under which the rhetor writes or speaks, including:

  • The nature and disposition of the audience,
  • The exigence that impels the writer to enter the conversation,
  • The writer’s goal or purpose,
  • Whatever else has already been said on the subject, and
  • The general state of the world outside the more specific context of the issue at hand.

All of these elements work together to determine what kinds of arguments will be effective (or, in Aristotle’s term, to define “ the available means of persuasion”) in the given case.







Rhetoric in Mandela's Speech (pg. 28)


Exploring how Mandela uses the artistic tools in order to persuade his audience 



Group Work:

Identify a specific textual example to support your answer and be able to example how it serves as a fitting example

1. How does Mandela appeal to pathos?

2. ethos?

3. logos?

4. How does he show that he understands his audience and the delicacy of the situation?

5. Describe the rhetorical situation/the cultural climate.



Review in class if we have time/if not, review at home




WOW Ch. 3/ Handbook Ch. 5


What is a paragraph?

A paragraph is a collection of related sentences dealing with a single topic. Learning to write good paragraphs will help you as a writer stay on track during your drafting and revision stages. Good paragraphing also greatly assists your readers in following a piece of writing. You can have fantastic ideas, but if those ideas aren't presented in an organized fashion, you will lose your readers (and fail to achieve your goals in writing).


The Basic Rule: Keep one idea to one paragraph

The basic rule of thumb with paragraphing is to keep one idea to one paragraph. If you begin to transition into a new idea, it belongs in a new paragraph. There are some simple ways to tell if you are on the same topic or a new one. You can have one idea and several bits of supporting evidence within a single paragraph. You can also have several points in a single paragraph as long as they relate to the overall topic of the paragraph. If the single points start to get long, then perhaps elaborating on each of them and placing them in their own paragraphs is the route to go.


Elements of a paragraph

To be as effective as possible, a paragraph should contain each of the following: Unity, Coherence, A Topic Sentence, and Adequate Development. As you will see, all of these traits overlap. Using and adapting them to your individual purposes will help you construct effective paragraphs.



Unity: a paragraph with unity develops one, and only one controlling idea. To ensure unity, edit out any stray ideas and do not go off topic with your writing.


Topic sentences state the main idea of the paragraph, and the other sentences in the paragraph support that idea.



pg. 65: Testing for Unity


  • What is the topic sentence?
  • How does this paragraph lack unity?
  • How would you fix this paragraph?



Using Topic Sentences: (pg. 64/65 in handbook)



Writing Coherent Paragraphs (pg. 66)

A paragraph is coherent when all its sentences clearly relate to one another. You can create coherence by arranging details according to an organizing principle, by using transitional words and phrases, by using parallel structure, and by repeating key words and phrases.


1. Arranging Details (pg. 67)

spatial order

chronological order

logical order (fill in the gaps between ideas)


2. using Transitional words and phrases (pgs. 67-69)


3. using parallel structure


Parallelism: the use of matching words, phrases, clauses, or sentence structure to emphasize similar ideas


Where have we seen this tactic?



A solid paragraph is also well developed

What does this mean?


Paragraphing Practice


Prompt: In order for college students to be successful, they must______________________________.


Your task: create a topic sentence that would pave the way for one unified, coherent, and well-developed paragraph.

Tips: choose something specific to discuss--1 solid reason (this is only a paragraph)

choose a topic that you'll be able to develop with examples and support


Example Topic sentence:

In order for college students to be successful, they must learn to become good students.

What is the problem with a topic sentence like this?

How can we fine tune this?

What would we include in this paragraph?



Volunteers to share 


Image result for success in college


Moving from Topic Sentence to Solid Paragraph


This is an outline: Topic Sentence. [Transition], + support idea #1. Example. [Transition], + support idea #2. Example. [Transition], + support idea #3. Example. Concluding sentence.


This is an example:

     Successful college students carefully manage their study time. [First], they set aside time each day to complete their homework. Many teachers assign approximately two hours of homework for every hour of class time. Successful students block out that much homework time in their daily schedules. [Second], successful students schedule time for long-term projects. Often students need several weeks to complete a project. Motivated students will break the project into small steps and work an hour or two each day until the project is complete. [Most importantly], successful students schedule adequate study time for tests. Good students do not wait until the night before the test to begin studying. They study the material each day, and they allow several hours to review the day before the test. Successful college students know the value of time management.



WOW ch. 3: Writing Process

From Paragraph to Essay


Now, let's use this topic (what it means to be a successful college student/how to achieve success in college) to think about developing a short essay

Step 1: Invention (discovering ideas)

pages 40-41: Mapping, Charting, Listing, Free writing, Questioning


Brainstorming Ideas to Include in this essay/Listing all the possible topics to include


  • Habits for successful college students
  • What to do/what not to do


Ask Questions: 

Is success in college determined only by grades?

If a student graduates, does that mean that he/she is successful?

What role does one's day-to-day life play in his/her academic experiences?

Is success the same for everyone, or is it more of an individual measure?

What role does one's family play in fostering successful college students?


In such essay, there is no way to include EVERYTHING and to examine all possible angles of this broad topic, so you need to narrow your focus a bit by creating a specific thesis statement that explains exactly what you plan to cover in this essay. 


A good thesis statement will usually include the following four attributes:

  • take on a subject upon which reasonable people could disagree
  • deal with a subject that can be adequately treated given the nature of the assignment
  • express one main idea
  • assert your conclusions about a subject




Develop a thesis statement that would serve as a road map for a short essay

It should state your position about what it means to be a successful college student





Student Examples 

Using thesis/controlling idea to organize a short essay (paragraphing)


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