English 1101 MWF

Peer Response Date: TBA

Rough Draft Due Date: TBA

Final Draft Due Date: TBA

Total points: ______

Jurassic World Movie Poster from Jurassicworld.com

Major Assignment II – Rhetorical Analysis

Purpose: The purpose of this assignment is to understand the components and elements of persuasive and argumentative material. Further, the material you examine must either successfully employ these rhetorical elements/appeals or fall short. 

Skills: Close examination of your source to identify rhetorical appeals (attention to detail). You will find techniques to create a persuasive piece or argument. 

Outcomes: You will be able to identify the various forms of rhetorical appeals to use for your argumentative essay. You will be able to find ways to connect with your intended audience and identify your intended audience for your argumentative essay.


Task: For this analysis, you will want to have at least 4 – 5 pages to identify these rhetorical appeals and make connections to a source of your choice. You will be analyzing a song, a meme, movie, speech, TedTalk, or TV show of your choice. When selecting your material, make sure it’s something you are interested in examining and can learn something about. It can be something related to your literacy narrative or something completely different. 

In the essay, make sure you identify: 

  1. Introduce the topic you’re choosing to analyze. 
  2. Identify the medium/source you’re using. In other words, if you choose to analyze an episode of Friends. Identify the show and the episode you are talking about. If it is a Meme, make sure you’re also examining the platform you’ve downloaded it from. 
  3. Make sure your audience (me and your peers) know how your source connects with what you’re analyzing. Make sure you have a clear, distinctive thesis. (Please note: the thesis should focus on whether the rhetorical strategies work or don’t work with what you’re analyzing). 
  4. Begin to identify the rhetorical strategies that are working, or not working. 
  5. Make sure you conclude by highlighting the important takeaways from your essay. What do you want your reader to think about once they finish reading your essay? 

Criteria: To be successful with this assignment, you must have: 

  • A strong, clear introduction. You want to grab your reader’s attention from start to finish. 
  • A defined source that is relevant to your topic. For example: If you’re going to talk about Cake Boss, it probably won’t be a good idea to say you plan on analyzing the appeals to encourage people to buy houses. 
  • Clear connection with the audience. You want to sound like yourself in this essay. Think of the points from a song or a movie that you use to recommend a friend to listen to. Also consider how you’re speaking to that friend when making that recommendation and how you’re showing them that they should listen to them.
  • Clear understanding of the rhetorical appeals and how they work in the context of your source. 
  • A strong conclusion that leaves readers thinking about the points and connections you made.

Alternative Task: You will be using the rhetorical appeals to persuade someone. To do this, you can create a podcast, a TedTalk, or a song (possibly 3 minutes) that focuses on a topic that you want people to listen to. The topic is of your choosing (so long as it respects others). Remember to use your appeals. You will present this in an audio clip or a video. Then, you will write a 2 – 3 page paper explaining the appeals you used in your creation. 

In your podcast, ted talk, or song: 

  1. You want to have a script or lyric sheet that you’re using. (You will be submitting a copy). 
  2. You MUST use the rhetorical appeals. 
  3. It must be entertaining. (Think about what entertains you? How does it do this? Use those answers to help guide you). 

For the paper : 

  1. You need a strong introduction. Like all essays, you want to grab your reader’s attention. Think of this as your way of getting someone to listen to what you’ve created. 
  2. Identify your chosen rhetorical elements and explain why you chose them and your purpose for choosing them? (you’re also showing me that you understand these rhetorical appeals).
  3. You want to summarize the appeals you used and why those are important and how they’re successful for you. 

Criteria: To be successful for this assignment, you will: 

  1. Need to have entertaining material. Remember this must entertain and captivate your audience. It also must be something that if your audience reads about, they’re wanting more from you. 
  2. Must successfully use the rhetorical appeals. 
  3. Makes valuable connections with yourself as a creator and the materials in the class. 

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