The aim of a rhetorical analysis paper is to determine how the creator of the piece of work that you’re analyzing came up with their argument. Although it is investigative in nature, it should not be confused with research analysis. Its purpose is not to determine the meaning of the piece being analyzed but to dissect the written work and convey HOW the author writes and not reflect on WHAT they have written.
To do this successfully, you should analyze the different strategies that the writer uses to achieve his or her goals. Keep in mind that people from diverse backgrounds often employ various approaches to meet their objectives. Based on this insight, it is acceptable to use different existing styles of writing to explore your work. For instance, you cannot use a similar technique to examine a scientific report as you would for a history article. Since each writer has unique objectives in mind, it is only reasonable that they would use different techniques in writing.
The first step to writing a rhetorical analysis outline is finding an excellent article that you can base your analysis on. As you go through the text, endeavor to identify the thesis statement and the principle arguments that the author is trying to convey. Once you understand the author’s point of view, you will have to start examining the rhetorical features of the context. It will require you to re-read the text with the following queries in mind:
The principal goal is to not only find answers to the questions above but also to establish the reason why the author has chosen to write in that particular style.
While there are numerous schools of thought concerning the best method to use when writing an analysis essay outline, at the peak strategy list is the SOAPSTone technique. The SOAPSTone method was created to help break down content written by professional writers in order to develop a rhetorical essay outline. The acronym represents the Speaker, Occasion, Target Audience, Purpose, Subject, and Tone of the text.
The elements of the SOAPSTone technique are:
Rhetorical strategies or modes are used by authors to allow them to structure and analyze the rhetorical analysis paper. They enable the writers to express their opinions and ideas effectively. These rhetorical modes include:
A rhetorical analysis essay follows the framework of a conventional composition. This means it should have an introduction, thesis, body paragraphs, and a conclusion. It also has a summary of the argument and strengths and weaknesses of the discussions.
Writing the Introduction
The introduction should:
Keep in mind that the primary analysis will take place in the body paragraphs. Therefore, make your introduction clear and concise.
The thesis statement creates a smooth transition between the introduction and the body paragraphs. It presents the main point of the essay and your thoughts on the topic. A few things to note when writing the thesis:
Writing the Body Paragraphs
The body is the most vital part of your rhetorical essay. The paragraphs should scrutinize the text and provide concrete examples to demonstrate the point better. Devote every paragraph to a specific strategy and begin each section with a topic sentence that relates to your thesis statement. The sections should seek to answer the following questions:
Including these details in your rhetorical analysis paper outline and the final draft will show that you understand the text and the overall style and rhetorical techniques used. Lastly, cite and reference your sources correctly.
Summary of the Arguments
In this section of your rhetorical analysis essay outline, use the following tools: ethos, logos, and pathos to describe the impact the author has on the reader. Ethos describes the character of the writer, their credentials or qualifications. It also explains their likability and intentions.
The logos describes the claims made in the thesis statement and the evidence used to support the arguments. The pathos portrays the emotions that the cases evoke and the tools that the author uses to elicit these emotions.
The conclusion should explain how the text affects the audience and the results. Did the piece of work that you are analyzing change the society in any way? Did it shape the history of the community? After you address these questions, highlight the significance of the work and then summarize your points and thesis statement.
The Student Loan Debt Trap
Background information on the topic: this includes the title, author, and the publication information. The issue and arguments made. For instance: “The article ‘The Student Loan Debt Trap’ was written by Kala Robinson. In this article, she argues that students are weighed down for a lifetime by the enormous loan debts.”
Thesis statement: your primary reaction to the author’s arguments. Support your thesis with appeals or logical reasons. An example of a thesis statement is: “Robinson uses statistics, emotional appeals, and real-life examples to present a strong argument for the need to do away with student loans.”
First point: use logos for this point. Start your paragraph with a topic sentence and use concrete examples and statistics. Explain whether the models are valid for the arguments. Use the cause and effect, inductive or deductive reasoning to explain your point.
For the second main point, use pathos and evaluate the effectiveness of the appeals that you present. And finally, for your last paragraph, use ethos with concrete examples of ethical appeal.
Summarize the evaluation and restate the thesis statement. An example of a conclusion based on the article ‘The Student Loan Debt Trap’:
“Finally, even though some of Robinson’s statistics are somewhat outdated, the use of these figures in combination with real-life examples presents a solid argument. She also uses emotional appeals to emphasize her point and compel readers to sympathize and understand the unfair burden that most graduates face as they struggle to repay their loans.”
Writing a rhetorical analysis outline template may seem like a daunting task. However, with proper planning and the right guidelines to follow, this seemingly impossible task can be achieved. The strategies discussed above and the rhetorical analysis outline example will help you write an engaging and outstanding rhetorical analysis paper. Remember, your essay should be written logically and coherently. Therefore, edit your document and ensure that you use proper grammar and punctuation. Follow this outline for rhetorical analysis and you’ll be well on your way to coming up with a great essay!