Home Rhetorical Analysis: Tips and Topics

Rhetorical Analysis: Tips and Topics

Writing a Rhetorical Analysis

A rhetorical analysis is an essay that is tightly connected with rhetoric, the study of how speakers and writers use words to have an impact on the audience. When writing a rhetorical analysis, students must choose a piece, break it into parts, and explain how those parts of the text work together to have a certain effect on the audience or the readers. Students need to figure out the goal of that work, whether it’s to inform people, persuade, or entertain them.

Assignments for college students can vary. Sometimes they need to analyze an advertisement, a speech, or even a cartoon. Writing a rhetorical analysis means that students are not supposed to say whether they agree or disagree with the author. What they should do is figure out the author’s goals, the techniques he used, and how effective they were. Some additional examples of those techniques are always needed to be in the text.

How to Write a Good Rhetorical Analysis

Before starting to write your essay, it is better to ask yourself a couple of questions about the work you’re analyzing. What is the author’s goal? What techniques, appeals, or evidence were used by the author? What are the examples of those techniques or appeals? Did they work? How can you explain why they worked or didn’t work?

By answering these questions, you will create a picture of what your essay is going to look like. You will understand what you should write about and what the main idea of your paper will be.

After brainstorming, you can proceed to writing. It’s always a good idea to create a couple of drafts before writing the paper itself. Don’t forget that your essay must contain a thesis, an introduction, a body, and a conclusion.

The thesis should describe a couple of techniques the author used, for which you can make the strongest case. The introduction is your chance to provide background, which will allow the reader to see your argument in the essay. The body should be divided into paragraphs, and it’s always better to start every paragraph with a topic sentence. Don’t forget to use examples in each paragraph and discuss how those examples illustrate the author’s techniques and appeals. In conclusion, state your main argument again, but do it briefly.

Double checking and re-reading is always a good idea. It is important to correct your grammar, punctuation, fix the typos, and deal with sentence structure problems. Try to avoid abbreviations as rhetorical analysis is a formal writing. Pay attention to the vocabulary you use because it can show your writing skills.

Topic Ideas for Rhetorical Analysis

If you are having troubles deciding which topic to choose, here are some interesting ideas you might use for your essay:

  • “I have a dream” speech by Martin Luther King and how it influenced the civil rights movement;
  • Steve Jobs’ commencement speech;
  • Harper Lee’s “To Kill a Mockingbird”;
  • “Sinners in the hands of an angry God”, a sermon by Jonathan Edwards;
  • John F. Kennedy and his inaugural address;
  • A Shakespearian monolog of your choice;
  • “Atoms for Peace” speech by Dwight Eisenhower;
  • William Wallace’s speech in “Brave Heart”;
  • The analysis of a Nobel Peace Prize speech of your choice;
  • Leonardo DiCaprio’s Oscar speech;
  • “Wild Nights”, a poem by Emily Dickinson;
  • The short story “The Tell-Tale Heart” by Edgar Allan Poe.

If you still can’t decide which topic to choose or don’t know how to write your rhetorical analysis essay properly, we are ready to help you. We have gathered only the most interesting topic ideas on our website. You can also check some essay samples, as we have a big database of written papers, and even order a rhetorical analysis to be written for you, as we have a team of experienced writers.

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