Annotated Bibliography: The Canons of Rhetoric For this week’s Custom Essay
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The Canons of Rhetoric For this week’s short writing assignment you’ll be reading and responding to the handout “5 Canons of Rhetoric.” Right away you will notice a reference to public speaking: “The whole art of oratory, as the most and greatest writers have taught…” You may be wondering, “Why am I reading about public speaking in a writing class? Am I going to be required to give a presentation?” To answer the first question, the study of composition (writing) and the study of rhetoric (the art of persuasion, originally in the form of oratory), are inextricably linked. In order to understand how to communicate effectively as writers we must learn a number of rules; these rules actually have their root in the oratory of ancient Greece and Rome. Over the years, these rules have been added to, but the foundations remain unchanged. Aristotle’s rhetorical triangle of logos, ethos, and pathos, holds true even today. We must appeal (a serious, urgent, persuasive communication) to our audience using sound logic and reason (logos); we must rely on our credibility and trustworthiness as speakers and writers (ethos); and we must sway the emotions of our audience so that they will feel as strongly about our cause as we do (pathos). Of course, there’s a lot more to rhetoric than the rhetorical triangle, but it’s a good place to begin. In this handout you will find and overview of rhetoric and its uses. You will be relying on some of these strategies in your own writing this semester. Prompt Find a scholarly article that pertains to your research topic. (By now you have probably amassed several, so simply choose one of them; if you haven’t yet begun your research, you’ll need to go out and find an article. You may also use any of the articles from the SAS textbook.) Read the abstract, the author’s credentials, and peruse the bibliography. Note when and where the article was originally published. Read the article, in its entirety, at least twice, to get a strong sense of its purpose, audience, and context. (Why was it written? Who was it written for? What is the situation surrounding the writing of the article? When and where was it published?) Write these down. Also write down or mark on the article itself the author’s thesis and main points. Now that you have a strong sense of the article’s content and objectives, you should move on to the next phase. For this assignment, I want you to focus on “Invention” and “Disposition.” Make sure you have read the entire “5 Canons of Rhetoric” handout before proceeding or emailing me with questions. Number your responses in list form, as you see here. Invention What can you determine about the intended audience for this article? What are their needs, desires, and/or thoughts regarding the topic at hand? (For example, the audience of a scientific study is most likely other members of the scientific community, specifically those who work within the same sub-field and who would be interested in reading the findings of the study.) Be as specific and thorough as possible with your answer. Identify the author’s ethos. What makes her/him credible and trustworthy on this topic? How do you know? Does the author appeal to the audience’s emotions at all (pathos)? If so, how? If not, why do you think the author declined to make an emotional appeal? Disposition Observe the arrangement of the article, then answer the following questions. Does the article’s introduction contain a thesis statement? Quote the thesis statement, and include a footnote citation. What is the statement of facts of the article? What has happened that has prompted the article to be written, or prompted what the article is written about? This may be background information, history, or some type of problem identified by the author. Does the author give a forecasting statement/division? This will look like a summary of the points the author is about to make. A list of the article’s main points, if you will. Now, for proof. What types of evidence (facts, testimonies, statistics, data, laws, maxims, examples, authority) has the author employed in order to appeal to this particular audience? Tell me the types of evidence used and briefly but thoroughly describe the evidence. Does the author highlight any potential weaknesses, inconsistencies, anomalies, or inconclusive findings? Do you see anything that looks like a refutation of the author’s own argument or findings? Type your responses, following the standard formatting guidelines for the course. Attach a Works Cited page with a full citation for the source you used. (You do not need to include an annotation on your Works Cited page, but you should add it to your Annotated Bibliography with an annotation. Remember, any sources you use this semester must be included on your Annotated Bibliography with full Chicago Style citation and annotation.) There is no minimum word count for this assignment. I only ask that you be thorough in your answers to demonstrate that you have grasped the concepts from the handout. Let me know if you have questions.
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