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Prompt for Essay #3
This essay has TWO parts, both of which will be submitted by the final due date for Essay #3, as one file.
Using your feedback on your rhetorical analysis assignment and your proposal, write an essay of your own that, without explicitly mentioning any of the six nonfiction pieces, responds to a central claim of one of the pieces. To effectively respond with an essay of your own, you will need to marshal evidence that supports your point. Your evidence will come from your own personal experience as well as any research you would like to undertake to help prove your thesis.
Write your essay in the rhetorical style and format of one of the six nonfiction pieces you’ve read. You may use your rhetorical analysis of the original piece to help you with this aspect of your essay. You do NOT need to choose the same rhetorical strategy of the nonfiction piece you’re responding to– you could choose the claims from one piece and the rhetorical style of another.
For example: If you choose to respond to a claim in “Am I Blue?” and write your own essay about your own claim that modifies that in Walker’s piece, you might still choose to write your response in the style and format of a graphic memoir (like “Common Scents”).
Write an analysis of your own nonfiction piece (i.e. Part 1), using the terminology and questions from pp. 42-49 in Legacies (section on Arguments about Literature) to describe what form of argument you’re using, as well as the how well your essay in Part I responds to the Checklist for Argumentative Writing (p. 47). Be sure to tell your reader how you analyzed the nonfiction piece you’re responding to as well as what conclusions you drew as a result of that analysis (this is work you already did in the first paragraph of your proposal. Don’t forget to reference the rhetorical angle you took in your own essay (did you use pathos, logos, and/or ethos to persuade? How? Your analysis of your own essay as well as the essays you’re responding to should amount to at least 2 typewritten pages, and it should be attached to the end of Part 1.
• 12 point font
• Approx. 5-7 pages, double-spaced (depending of the format you choose) • One-inch margins
• Give your essay a title that tells us something about the content and draws the interest of the reader
• Clearly label Part I and Part II. In Part II, make a note at the top of the page of which nonfiction piece you’re responding to in terms of your argument as well as which nonfiction piece you’re using as your rhetorical model.
• Works Cited page in MLA style (for the original piece you’re responding to, as well as any additional research you use).
• Numbered pages, starting with page 2 after the cover sheet
• Cover sheet that includes your name, name of the course, title of your essay, and the date
For this assignment, I would like you to choose one of the nonfiction pieces we’ve read this semester and analyze it in terms of its individual rhetoric. In this case, by rhetoric, I mean not so much what a piece is saying as how it is saying it. What forms does the piece use to communicate its ideas? How does it seek to persuade the reader? What methods of persuasion does it use (remember pathos, ethos, and logos from your notes you took from page 42 onward)? Try to avoid summarizing the piece–remember, your job is to break down how the piece is working, not what it is saying. In doing so, you’ll need to present evidence from the piece to support your claims.
Pieces to choose from:
“Am I Blue” by Walker
“The Story of My Body” by Cofer
“Burl’s” by Cooper
“‘Talking to Boys the Way We Talk to Girls” by Reiner
“If You Are What You Eat, Then What Am I?” by Kothari
“Common Scents” by Barry
Your rhetorical analysis should amount to about one typed, double spaced page
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