In this assignment, you will begin to rhetorically analyze Smith’s text. It is designed to get you thinking about how you can use the process of rhetorical analysis to help you make a larger critical interpretation of a text.

I don’t know how to handle this English question and need guidance.

Task 1/Reading: Re-read Smith’s article. Re-read “What Is Rhetoric: Purpose/Audience/Context/Strategies?” “Modes of Appeal,” and “Article Types.”

Task 2/Reading and Annotating: Read Smith’s article again and mark places where you see evidence of her purpose, audience, context, and use of appeals. Use the chart “Asking Rhetorical Questions About a Text in Canvas>Week Four to help you annotate.

Task 3/Composing to Learn: Now write some notes for yourself to describe Smith’s purpose, audience, context, and use of appeals. As you are writing notes, consider this: even though we want to focus our attention directly on a text when we are doing rhetorical analysis, it’s also helpful to look outside a text a little bit. Therefore, to help you write your notes, do this:

a. Consider that Smith’s article has been published in The Atlantic. Think about how the genre, length, topic, and publisher of the text might have helped Smith determine her audience.

a. Writing about context can be a little tricky, so you may also find it helpful to Google Smith to get some more background information to help you think about her context. I’ve included some helpful links in Canvas> Week Four to other texts by Smith that provide interesting information about her. Take a look at those, and ask yourself: What do you think motivated Smith to write her article? What historical or personal events have shaped how she sees the world and influenced her writing? What conversation is she joining?

b. Consider that everything we find in Smith’s text—her overall structure, her title, her subtitles, her vocabulary, her use of evidence, her use of photographs—are choices she makes to appeal to her audience in order to accomplish her purpose. Therefore, we can identify each choice as an appeal to logos, ethos, and pathos. Take some time to imagine why Smith made all the choices she did and how those choices are intended to appeal to her audience.

Task 4/Composing to Communicate: Organize your annotations and notes and describe each of the following rhetorical elements in several sentences. In your description of each element, include some evidence to support your ideas. Write about:

a. Smith’s purpose

b. Her audience

c. Her context

d. Her appeals to ethos, pathos, and logos

Read carefully. Analyze thoughtfully. Don’t just look for simple answers to questions about Smith’s rhetorical situation, but try to think about it in a more complex way. In other words, try to “wallow in complexity.”