Rhetorical Analysis |Legit essays

Posted: March 8th, 2023

Please rhetorically analyze ONE of the following speeches for this assignment. All speeches can be found within the “Opposing Viewpoints” database connected to this course. See the “Banner” to access the “Opposing Viewpoints” link.

ENG102_MH_V5 | Writing Assignment 1: Rhetorical Analysis

Assignment Guide: Rhetorical Analysis

Assignment Overview What is an analysis?

To analyze means to break things or ideas down to smaller points to learn what those points are and how they relate to one another. Thus, an analysis is the act of closely examining something to learn more about it.

What is a “rhetorical” analysis?

A rhetorical analysis examines a written, visual, or auditory piece of communication by looking closely at its parts (its “rhetorical situation)–audience, purpose, medium, and context–and forwarding an argument about that piece of communication.These elements are called the rhetorical situation.

The “Rhetorical Situation” considers the following:

Audience: Spectator, listeners, and/or readers of a given communication. Depending on the author’s/writer’s perception, an audience may be real (actually listening or reading), invoked (those to whom the writer explicitly writes) or imagined (those who the writer believes will read/hear her work). Purpose: The author’s reason for communicating; the expected or intended outcome.  Medium: The communication’s delivery method, which varies by type of text: the written word, image, sound or multimodal texts. Context: The time and place surrounding the communication as it is shared.


The rhetorical situation also considers the appeals a communicator makes to their audience. These appeals can be seen in a triangular position, the rhetorical triangle.

Ethos (Credibility &




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Aristotle’s Rhetorical Triangle




Pathos (Emotion &


Logos (logic, facts,

& consistency)

Considering the rhetorical triangle: How does a communicator appeal to their audience?


In order for a writer to successfully convey an argument, certain persuasive techniques are utilized. These techniques function together within a text, though some are used more than others within a given argument.  The interactive relationship between these techniques is referred to as the rhetorical triangle. It was Aristotle, the Greek philosopher, who helped us to see these elements of persuasion as interlinked in such a way. Thus, in learning to read or write a persuasive analysis, it is helpful to think about the relationship among the triangle’s elements: ethos, pathos, and logos, or an appeal to the audience through the credibility of the speaker (ethos), through an emotional tug (pathos), and/or through the use of logic (logos).

The following are the three elements of the rhetorical triangle:

Ethos: An appeal to the authority or credibility of the author. The speaker must convince the audience of their credibility through the language they use and through the delivery, or embodied performance, of their text/speech. Consider the following:

What experiences or claims to authority qualify the author to speak or write? What is the credibility and moral character of the writer/speaker? What does the design or appearance of the text you are analyzing convey? Does it look professional? What can you say about the author based on the appearance of the text alone?


Pathos: An appeal to emotion. Emotional appeals evoke feelings of pity, sympathy, tenderness, or sorrow. The speaker may also want the audience to feel anger, fear, courage, love, happiness, sadness, etc. Consider the following:

How does the author appeal to the emotions of the reader/viewer? How does the author establish a bond with his audience? What kinds of feelings does the communication (e.g. speech) provoke?


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Logos: The means of persuasion by demonstration of the truth, real or apparent, the reasons or supporting information used to support a claim, and the use of logic or reason to make an argument. Logos can include citing facts and statistics, historical events, and other forms of fact-based evidence. Consider the following:

How does the author back up their argument in the text? Do they incorporate facts, statistics, or numbers? How logical is the author’s argument? Are the claims this author is making realistic? Does the author consider alternative arguments?

What about the “stuff” a writer or speaker says that’s not quite right or a bit sneaky?

These are called logical fallacies. A fallacy is something that people think is true but, in fact, is not. A logical fallacy occurs when a communicator or writer/speaker tries to convince his audience using facts, ideas or information that may be misleading or may appear misleading to the audience. Logical fallacies within a particular text or communication can occur accidentally or with the purpose to deceive. No matter the impetus, a logical fallacy is a mistruth.

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A rhetorical analysis is a type of essay or academic paper that examines how a writer or speaker uses language to influence an audience. It involves studying the techniques, strategies, and choices that the writer or speaker makes to achieve a particular purpose or effect. In a rhetorical analysis, the focus is not on the content of the text or speech, but rather on how it is presented. This includes analyzing the use of rhetorical devices such as metaphor, simile, irony, and hyperbole, as well as the tone, style, and structure of the piece.

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