Analysis of Persuasive Appeals and Rhetorical Strategies

Ling 281
Fall 2018
Paper #2 – Analysis of Persuasive Appeals and Rhetorical Strategies
Minimum 1400 words
Write an analysis of an academic text’s argument, with particular emphasis on rhetorical
Use MLK’s “Letter from Birmingham Jail” to demonstrate an understanding of “persuasive
appeal” and “rhetorical strategy.” Ultimately, your paper will demonstrate an explicit knowledge
of choices authors make to inform, influence, or persuade audiences.
To be successful, this analysis will include the following components:
1. An introduction that introduces your project to the reader and describes the work to be
done in the body of the paper.
a. Preview the general organization of your paper
b. Preview the key questions your paper addresses
c. State your claim and reason concerning what you notice about the rhetorical choices
authors make
2. An explanation of the authors’ central claim and reason, as well as background on the
author, the audience, the social context, the place of publication
3. A discussion of the authors’ use of persuasive appeals. You may decide to discuss logos
(logic), pathos (emotion), and ethos (credibility), or you may decide to discuss only one
of these appeals. These appeals are achieved by using rhetorical strategies, so your
investigation will begin by identifying a strategy and then showing how it persuades
through logic, emotion, and/or credibility.
4. A conclusion that tells the significance or consequence of understanding persuasive
Although these sections are listed separately, your paper will link them through smooth
transitions. Remember that you will need to provide quoting and examples to support your
Due Dates:
10/16 – Outline due; in-class writing
10/23 – submit revised paper to turnitin on Blackboard
11/9 – final draft of paper 2 submitted to turnitin on Blackboard

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