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Rhetorical Analysis

Rhetorical Analysis


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Rhetorical Analysis

Guidelines for Rhetorical Analysis:

Read Actively:

  • Jot down questions, thoughts in margins of the text. (Rhetorical Analysis)
  • Underline key concepts
  • Engaging with the work
  • Use pencil so you can erase and rewrite
  • Example: An article from a consumer oriented newsletter.

Familiarize yourself with the basic features and structure of a text:

  • What kind of text? Essay, editorial, scholarly article, an advertisement, a photograph?
  • What is the author’s purpose? To inform? To persuade? To call to action?
  • Who is the audience? How does the author attempt to appeal to the audience?
  • What is the author’s thesis? What question does the text attempt to answer?
  • What evidence does the author provide to support the thesis?

Note details that surprise, puzzle or intrigue you:

  • Has the author revealed a fact or made a point that runs counter to what you had assumed was true? What is surprising?
  • As the author made a generalization you disagree with? Can you think of evidence that would challenge the generalization?
  • Are there any contradictions or inconsistencies in the text?
  • Words, statements, and phrases in the text you don’t understand? What reference materials do you need to consult

Read and reread to discover meaning:

  • What do you notice on a second or third reading that you didn’t notice earlier?
  • Does the text raise questions that it does not resolve?
  • If you could address the author directly, what questions would you pose?
  • Where do you agree and disagree with the author? Why? 


Sketch a brief outline of the text:

  • After reading, rereading, and annotating a text, attempt to outline it
  • Seeing how the author has constructed a text can help you understand it
  • Look for the text’s thesis (main point)
  • Pay attention to the topic sentences
  • When you create your outline, put the author’s thesis and key points in your own words
  • Your outline should sum up the central points of the article


Summarize to demonstrate understanding:

  1. The goal in summarizing a text is to state the work’s main ideas and key points simply, briefly, and accurately
  2. First find the author’s central idea – the thesis
  3. Then divide the whole piece into a few major and minor ideas. (Length = judgment)

Guidelines for writing a summary:

  • In the first sentence, mention the title of the text, the name of the author, and the author’s thesis or the visual’s central point
  • Maintain a neutral tone: be objective
  • Use the third-person point of view and the present tense: Taylor argues…
  • Keep the focus on the text. Don’t state the author’s ideas as if they were your own
  • Put all or most of your summary in your own words; if you borrow a phrase or a sentence from the text, put it in quotation marks and give the page number in parentheses
  • Limit yourself to representing the text’s key points
  • Be concise; make every word count


Title: An outline of the Analysis

Pages: 3

Style: MLA

Paper Review

An outline of the Analysis

The introduction of the paper presents the political cartoon to be analyzed and thesis statement about the topic of discussion. The selected cartoon of analysis in the paper is titled “Political Cartoons on the Democratic Party” produced by Michael Ramirez. The thesis in the paper is how political cartoons can be used to address sensitive political issues in the public domain.

The Body gives the actual analysis of the cartoon. It describes the common persuasive techniques that the artist uses to communicate his points. Some of the techniques include use of symbolism, analogies, labelling and irony among others.

In Conclusion the paper gives the personal opinions about the analysis and its significance in communicating sensitive political issues to the public. This section focuses on the successful strategies of using cartoons in addressing political issues in a comical but effective way.

Political Cartoon Analysis

Most artist use cartoons in order to share the ideas or opinions to the general public in a comical way. Political cartoons are very critical in sharing sensitive political ideas, opinions or information without targeting the parties involved directly. This paper will give a summary on a political cartoon titled “Political Cartoons on the Democratic Party” produced by a renown cartoonist Michael Ramirez. The paper will focus on the persuasive techniques that the artist employs in order to communicate his point. The paper will also give an elaborate cartoon analysis of the mentioned political cartoon.

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