Week 4: Critical Reading Response: Moving Audiences with Rhetorical Appeals Discussion
A creative title on the discussion needed
Compositionists, Peter Elbow’s article title “Bringing the Rhetoric of Assent and the Believing Game Together–and into the Classroom” explores the seminal question of the field of rhetoric being, “How can I change their minds.” In this vein, this week’s readings will introduce the core rhetorical appeals of pathos, ethos, and logos. Not only does our textbook offer strategies for identifying these appeals, Lunsford et al. will help you understand when and how writers should employ these techniques in writing. As additional support, Alexander Losh et al. move this conversation into the visual realm and through this graphic novel excerpt, you will gain a deeper understanding why these appeals are vital in order to build sound and impactful arguments that resonate with your audience. While you explore these ideas to strengthen your argument skills, consider Elbow’s argument, “any study of good thinking or effective argument is flawed if it fails to focus on the problem of how we change our own minds” (389). What was a time your mind was changed and can you remember what changed it?
After Reading the assigned texts, your response should be approached in one of the following ways:
- Reading with/Reading Against: Read with each text, summarizing the key ideas. Then, “talk back” to the ideas, locating potential gaps or how these ideas might be reconsidered or implemented in various settings.
- Impact on your own writing: Think of what impact the ideas or concepts in a particular article/chapter/es. SAY may have on the teaching of writing or on writing more generally–in and out of your discipline. Explain as clearly as possible how this impact might occur. You might also talk about the problems and/or possibilities this concept or idea creates for the teacher/student/practitioner. You should reflect, at least a little, on how your own experience(s) in classrooms and courses rub against the concept(s) or idea(s) to which you are responding.
- Synthesis: Looking at the texts you read for the week, attempt to synthesize a concept or idea that you noticed moving through the texts. Your goal should be to highlight the idea or concept as the writers understand it and then explain how you see these concepts connecting or disconnecting in a productive way. You might also use these syntheses in future projects.
You may want to include key definitions and terms to help you on future projects. Every discussion post must include a question you want the class to address that goes beyond reading comprehension (i.e. we want conversations started not merely yes/no or shallow questions). The expectation is that you engage deeply with the assigned readings and draw explicit connections between your CRR and the readings.
- Type or paste your reading response directly into the submission text area
- You do not need to include an MLA Works Cited entry, but do follow MLA format to cite any sentences with direct examples or quotations you reference from the reading.