Rhetorical Analysis Essay

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Rhetorical Analysis Essay

A rhetorical analysis essay is a very specific form of assignment that requires students to "read between the lines" of what is written in a document in order to analyze what the writer is saying about a particular person, topic, location, or otherwise.  Rhetorical analysis essays can be difficult for students at first, as they require learners to think very critically about writing and about the way in which an author presents information.

One of the first things that students should do when they are assigned to write a rhetorical analysis essay is to read the material that they have to write the assignment on for the assignment.  As the student writes the rhetorical analysis essay, the pupil can assume that his or her reader has already read the same document.  Therefore, the learner will not need to read the document in order to summarize it.  Instead, the learner will need to read the document in order to truly understand it.  

Often, students that write great rhetorical analysis essays have good instincts based on the feedback that they get from the literature that they are reading.  They can understand how the author used pathos and ethos in order to derive emotion from the reader.  They can also analyze the form of the literature in order to truly understand why the author crafted the work in such a way.  However, not all students will be adept at breaking down a literature work to its basics so that they can understand what the author is saying without saying it.  

When a student is not able to "read between the lines" of a literary work in order to create the rhetorical analysis essay, the student should turn to other resources, such as book summaries and critical analyses of the work.  The student may also benefit by reviewing other rhetorical analysis essays on the same work in order to craft his or her own document.  

Students should be careful when writing their rhetorical analysis essays not to recap events of a work.  Instead, students need to assume that everyone that reads their rhetorical analysis essays has already read the book about which the student is writing the document.  For this reason, a rhetorical analysis essay is very different from a story review.  

Book reports are generally intended to recap and summarize information within a book.  Sometimes book reports will provide a brief analysis of the information, as well.  However, a rhetorical analysis essay does not recap a book.  Instead, it provides an analysis of tools that an author used to convey his or her point in the book.

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