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Rhetorical analysis essay

Know how to write a rhetorical analysis

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Rhetorical Analysis Essay
 John Millar   Published On Aug 25, 2020 | Updated on Dec 06, 2023  Writing Service

Writing a Rhetorical analysis essay might seem very difficult, but what must be done at the very first instance is to learn the nuances rather than worrying about it. It is not something impossible. Rhetoric can be defined as the study which involve assessment of how speakers or writers make use of words, in order attribute meaning or influence the audience or readers. A Rhetorical analysis essay helps in breaking down s piece of writing, such as fiction or non fiction, inl order to understand the motivations and usage of words. Furthermore, it is an examination of how the parts connect to become a whole, as it gives rise to meanings and have a certain effect on the readers or audience. Rhetorical analysis can be conducted on various works such as novels, essays, comics, advertisements, oral performances and so on.

 A strong rhetorical analysis can be conducted by following certain guidelines and thoroughly assessing the point of view of the author. Generally, it is a bit different from other forms of academic writing, for which special attention had to be paid to the details, to be able to employ them while analyzing Rhetoric. Most importantly it helps in the process of identifying how the entire work has been put together to obtain meaning. And then, to influence the readers and audience.

Methods of Persuasion

There are basically three methods of persuasion which include Ethos, Pathos and Logos. One might be familiar with the idea if at any given point in time, Persuasive essay was written. These rhetorical strategies play a very important role to determine effectiveness and how the author has been successful to give meaning to their point of view.


Ethos can be defined as the credibility of the author. Ethos let’s is understand whether or not the author is authentic or trustworthy in his or her work. It is also known as the ethical appeal in a work. However, it must be understood that the meaning of 'Ethical', in this particular aspect is different from the general meaning. Here, Ethos helps in describing how the audience have been impacted or given rise to a perception among the audience especially about the author's work. While analyzing the Ethos, whether or not the Ethos is strong is discussed. However there are two kinds of Ethos which include Intrinsic and Extrinsic types.


Pathos refers to the emotional qualities or side to the argument. It plays a very important role, when the author is trying to assert a point. The task of the author is to appeal to the audience or readers, so that they can associate with the author and this thoughts and ideas, in order to convey the meaning. It is also known as the pathetic appeal involved. However, it is again important to understand that the literal meaning of Pathetic do not bear the same meaning here too. For example, when the author of orator makes the usage of feelings or emotions, in order to appeal to the audience, that is, love, anger, jealousy, sorrow, affection, pity, lust, greed and so on, then pathos is being employed, in order to connect with the audience or readers. Hence, feelings or emotions are evoked among people through the usage of pathos.


Logos refers to the usage of logic or logical appeal. It tends to be a bit different from Ethos and Pathos. A reader or audience might be able to identify or realize that Logos or logical appeal is being made by the author or the orator, in order to persuade people. However, it is not the indication of the author or rhetor succeeding. It is just a mere indication of what kind of rhetoric is being employed by the rhetor, in order to make the appeal, while addressing the audience or readers. Logos or logical appeal is also referred to as the usage of strategies in order to be persuasive. Hence, a reasonable claim has to be made, in order to stand true. In addition to that, evidences to support such claims are also to be presented. It is only then t that the audience is most likely to perceive what is being addressed.

Writing a Rhetoric Analysis

At the very beginning, one must be very sure of the intention and this possess knowledge about the subject, that is, Rhetoric analysis. As it has been discussed that it tends to differ from research paper, the nuances must be known. It is advised that a structure is set well in advance, so that the essay is organized in a whole, rather than being scattered.

The essay should start with an introduction, where the text which is to be analysed, introduced. It should create an impression to the audience about how the paper would be like. Next, you may begin to analyse the text in order to examine the objective of the author. Identifying the literary and rhetorical devices should be the intention through out the essay, before the paper is concluded. Furthermore, it has to be determined if or not the author was successful to establish his/her point of view and how various devices and strategies have been employed in the act of persuasion.

Typically, a rhetorical analysis essay should have a specific outline. The usual outline which is followed while writing a rhetorical analysis essay comprises of an Introduction, several body paragraphs and a concluding paragraph. There must be a thesis statement in the essay, at the end of your introductory paragraph stating your intention and the opinion of the author, which shall be analysed in order to derive meaning and various strategies used.

Reading attentively is the most effective way to conduct a rhetorical analysis. In addition to that, you would want to ask yourself questions to make careful investigation of the choices made by the author/rhetor. You need not focus on elaborating on the meanings but how they have been presented to the audience.

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