Rhetorical Analysis Essay: Ultimate Writing Guide
An assignment to complete a rhetorical analysis essay may seem pretty difficult for students who never completed such tasks before. Believe it or not, such a point is valid. The main goal of this essay differs from other types like persuasive or argumentative. Here the students don't need to work with arguments alone but rather pay attention to how the author of a reviewed article chose to write.
Even though this might seem tricky, we will do our best to provide you with exhaustive information about this type of work. This article will help you figure out how to write a rhetorical analysis essay and what else to consider during the process. Keep reading to get the idea of rhetoric analysis and learn more with the help of our tips.
What Is a Rhetorical Analysis Essay?
A rhetorical analysis essay is a form of writing where the author looks at the topic in greater detail and proves his standpoint, using effective and persuasive methods. In a broader sense, a rhetorical paper means 'writing about writing,' 'dreaming about a dream,' 'teaching a teacher,' and so on. The purpose here is to pay attention to how the author presents their arguments instead of sticking to the problems raised. It is one of the assignments which appears on the AP English exam.
The main point of rhetorical writing is to create the informative text by dividing the words and phrases that the writer uses. It is used to reveal the persuasive techniques used to get feedback from the audience. Various authorities' public speeches involve such methods that students can use as an excellent rhetorical analysis essay example. Also, following the basic questions is the key to success in such a paper:
- What is the situation described by the author of the original piece?
- Who is the writer/author/speaker?
- What is the primary goal of the analyzed part of text, article, or public speech based on the author's intentions?
- Who is the author's target audience (age, nationality, gender, preferences, location, interests, and other factors)?
- How does the content of the main argument sound?
- Do the overall form and content correspond?
- Does the main article or speech idea complete the author's intentions and primary objectives?
- What does the nature of communication tell about the culture that developed it?
Rhetoric aims to teach students how to percept speeches, texts, and arguments in terms of how they are built to convince the audience. The main techniques used in rhetoric are logos, ethos, and pathos. At first sight, these terms sound like some magic spell. Still, they are the main points of Aristotle's persuasion. Years ago, Aristotle outlined these three terms in his book "Rhetoric." They are now considered to be the best persuasive strategies to be used in rhetorical analysis.
- Ethos is the ethical appeal. Such an approach supposes that the author's credibility is top-notch in the subject they are analyzing. The goal here is to show that people can trust you on the matter.
- Pathos stands for the pathetic appeal. The idea here is to get to the audience's emotions with the help of the arguments you provide. Aim to receive an emotional response to your rhetorical analysis to succeed.
- Logos is the logical appeal. This one is the leading academic writing approach since it works around using reasoning and supporting the argument.
How to Write a Rhetorical Analysis Essay?
In short, a rhetorical analysis essay has to be:
- grammatically correct
- written in present tense
- respond to the analyzed article, speech, or other text
Now, it is time to proceed to the detailed instructions for creating such paper.
Before you start working on an effective rhetorical analysis essay, it would be great to review some pre-writing tips. Those are:
- Use SOAPS approach:
- S stands for the subject, which is the topic of your interest
- O is the occasion, things that prompted the article or a speech besides the ones assigned
- A is the audience, which addresses the people to be the readers of the chose piece
- P stands for the purpose meaning why the author created the writing piece (to describe, explain, interpret)
- The last S is the speaker.
- Appeals – ethos, pathos, logos
- Writing style – voice, tone, language, imagery
- Here is where the analysis part of the article steps in! A summary of the text is never an analysis, so focus more on your text's evaluation approach.
- Think of an answer to such a question: "How do rhetorical strategies help achieve the main purpose of the paper?"
How to Start a Rhetorical Analysis Essay?
At the very beginning, consider these three simple points that will help you get the idea of what to do next:
- Choose your position. This part of work is essential because the way of writing is entirely contingent on it. Here, define your role on the theme you should analyze. Develop a rhetorical statement to use in the introduction later. It is a short argument or your standpoint, which you should prove in your text. For example, if your target goal is to analyze a novel, your thesis is your interpretation of it. Thus, you should find and use different techniques or strategies to prove to the audience that you are right. When you work on your thesis statement, always avoid personal pronouns and try to present them objectively. Make your reader believe you.
- Think about the analysis. Try to conduct as much research as possible on your topic. It will genuinely help you find several solutions to the current problem. Proceed to this part after the moment you stated your thesis. After doing that, move on to the topic analysis. Find the best methods to help you support your idea in the best possible way.
- Choose the strategy. It is an essential part of critical academic work where you need to back up your thesis statement. Try to grab the audience's attention: the strategy will be your helping hand, allowing you to do that. If you work on a rhetorical analysis essay, this point is more than crucial.
Another thing to keep in mind is that organization is essential for any academic paper, and a rhetorical paper is not an exception. Don't worry – this essay's structure looks pretty much the same as other types of school or college academic papers.
There are many different ways to grab your reader's attention from the initial line of your essay. The best trick is to choose a compelling hook to reflect your topic. Keep in mind that a hook sentence should correspond to the tone and audience of your paper too. A joke won't be OK if you write an essay about serious health issues like total disability.
Rhetorical Analysis Essay Outline
Browsing the web and learning the information presented on different portals, you will find the outline essential. Many examples are proving such a fact. So in case you have an outline for your paper, the working process will become much easier for you. The structure of a rhetorical analysis essay does not differ from other types of essays. We also recommend using the 5-paragraph format to adhere to.
An introductory paragraph always sets the tone of the entire essay. Within this part, aim to show your work's goal to your reader. Let them know about what your paper is in advance. Develop your thesis statement. Choose a single idea you like better than others, narrow it down, and write a concise, clear sentence highlighting this idea to your readers. Think about choosing the main argument and focus your writing on it. Your readers should be able to trace it throughout the essay body.
It would be best to write three body paragraphs in this part – one paragraph for each idea. Pinpoint attention to arrangements during the writing process, and it will speed up once you manage to provide adequate evidence. Working on body paragraphs, organize them by rhetorical appeals. Divide them into sections and identify the epos, logos, and pathos. Your essay shouldn't be too wordy. Your primary aim is to give facts and fortify them with various ideas so that in the end, each body paragraph will have a single claim and supporting evidence.
The conclusion's goal is to summarize all ideas you acknowledged in your essay and restate the thesis statement. Rephrase it to mention once again but in other words. Information alluded in conclusion should be brief. It is better to end up your rhetorical text with a powerful call to action. Different ways include a related question, expression, or forecast to leave a positive impression on your reader.
Tips for Writing a Rhetorical Analysis Essay
Keep in mind that sensory details, emotions, and examples altogether help support the thesis statement. Just like arguments help support the main idea in the argumentative or persuasive essay. Thus, facts alone are not compelling enough. We suggest that students utilize different literary and creative tools like similes, metaphors, personifications, comparisons, and parallels to provide a complete description of the topic.
Below you will find five essential tips that you may consider during essay writing:
- Never mention new information in the conclusion. Summarize and paraphrase the ideas discussed in the text before.
- Don't argue since the overriding priority of such a paper is to analyze but not sustain your view.
- Never start a conclusion with the word "in." If your essay belongs to a high academic level, this expression will only clutter your work.
- Once you're done with your draft, check it several times with the help of various free grammar-checking tools available online. Show the draft to your educator to point out your mistakes. Fix them before the deadline arrives.
- Revise the final papers at least two times to see whether you fixed everything. The good idea is to give your finished essay to people around to share their thoughts on improvement.
It is indeed understandable that writing a rhetorical essay requires you to understand rhetorical strategies and apply them in practice, which is not easy. But hopefully, this article made things more evident for you.
Nevertheless, if English is not your native language or you can't brag about ideal writing skills, you can always find the professional assistance at JustBuyEssay. Our online service is aware of all peculiarities of working on a rhetorical analysis essay. Its talented academic authors with more than 20 years of combined experience in educational services used to write such works on a timely basis. For that reason, their professionalism can comply with the requirements of the most demanding people.