In discover and understand the purpose of the rhetoric

In this 2010 essay, “Briefcases vs Backpacks: Steps toward Rhetorical Analysis” author Laura Bolin Carroll, “an accomplished communicator and popular public speaker, author, and consultant on human behavior,” analyzes the need for rhetorical analysis to help in explaining the purpose of writing by exploiting an abundance of real-life situations that have been encountered in our everyday lives. Carroll develops on the rhetorical writing by describing the steps required to effectively accomplish and create a well-constructed piece. The text also states and discusses where rhetoric can be found and how to distinguish the different types of rhetoric. The three main subtopics the author discusses in her essay are the first impressions of rhetoric, the implications of a rhetorical analysis, and the rhetorical situation; she also discusses Aristotle’s appeals which are ethos, pathos, and logos.  Rhetorical analysis is the ability to evaluate the source or text used in persuading or influencing the reader. In Carroll’s article, she states that “One of the first places to start is context. Rhetorical messages always occur in a specific situation or context.” In order to develop her argument, she states that in to fully understand the context, they must know that there are three main factors that determine the context, and they are “exigence, audience, and constraints.” She also states that there may be other factors such as the rhetorical triangle of “writer, reader, and purpose,” or how some like to think about context as “subject, purpose, audience, and occasion. Exigence, according to the author, is the condition that invites the reader to a response. In other words, it aims to discover and understand the purpose of the rhetoric and what the goal is. Some key questions that should be answered when aiming to complete the exigence part of the context are “”What is this rhetoric responding to?” “What might have happened to make the rhetor (the person who creates the rhetoric) respond in this way?”” The audience is those who are the intended rhetorical message is supposed to be for. Audience as Carroll states that they are supposed to “determine the type of language used, the formality of the discourse, the medium, and the types of reasons used the make the rhetor’s argument. She uses a real-life example of how one may be frustrated with the meal plans, and instead of the intended audience should the person on campus, you end up emailing a friend who may not do anything about it. Constraints are the last piece of the rhetorical situation. Constraints limit the way the text or picture is communicated. Constraints can range from one’s beliefs to one’s interests and motives. As Carroll liked to put it, constraints can be the number of words you are allowed to have on an essay, or what language should be communicated in order to persuade a certain group of people.Ethos, Pathos, and Logos are a very important aspect of the construction of a rhetorical analysis. Ethos is the appeal to credibility. Ethos refers to the credibility of the author or rhetor. Logos is the appeal to logic. Pathos is the appeal to emotion. Carroll describes these three appeals as an influential way to understand and make sure that the audience understands the purpose of the message. Carroll states that “Logos, pathos, and ethos can provide a nice framework for analysis, but there are numerous ways to understand how a piece of rhetoric persuades (or fails to persuade).”In conclusion, Carroll suggests that in order to persuade and create change, one would need to first understand the aspect of rhetorical analysis before attempting to influence. Rhetorical analysis is a very persuasive technique, and in order to persuade, one would need to understand the key aspects of rhetoric in order to persuade their intended audience. It’s important to learn how rhetoric because it’s an effective tool to persuade the readers. 


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