A rhetorical analysis is a written piece with a gist to identify the key elements within a piece of writing. These key elements are the writer or speaker themselves, the overall message in the text, and the intended audience the text is written for. The writer of the text is examined through questions such as “does the author show prejudice?” and “how does the author present themselves?”. The message is also examined in how it is portrayed throughout the text through literary strategies like comparing and contrasting, narration, and its presentation. The intended audience is determined throughout the text by analyzing if the audience is encouraged to engage with the written work, or if their beliefs are shown throughout the text. In a rhetorical analysis, the writer must determine how the author conveys the overall message of a text through literary strategies to an intended audience.
Throughout the second half of the semester in this class, we have read and analyzed a few pieces of media and wrote rhetorical analyses for each. We began by looking at Manhattan apartment tours on the Apartment Therapy website where we practiced writing a rhetorical analysis. Then we continued with a children’s book titled “Iggy Peck: Architect” with a more refined analysis. These two written pieces have a connection to this course because they share a common theme of architecture and design, which coincides with the overall class topic of architecture.
In this article, the author uses several strategies to appeal to the audience about the apartment in question. At first, the writer does not introduce any personal information or biases about themselves but does shed light on details about the apartment. The author does this by using favorable descriptions such as “With high vaulted ceilings, gorgeous southern light, and the feeling that you’re in a modern beach cottage in the heart of New York City, it’s not hard to see why.” as well as several images to offer visuals and back up their favorable claims about the apartment. The author also compares the overall size of the apartment to how the owner utilizes the space as efficient and visually appealing.
The message about this article is to showcase an apartment that has a unique style. The message is introduced through the images that accompany it as well as the descriptions of those images using favorable vocabulary. As well as use of a short interview with the homeowner provides more detail. The intended audience of this article is similar apartment owners that may look to this article for inspiration.
In the storybook, Iggy Peck Architect, the author tells a story about a young kid who was interested in architecture since the age of two and the reactions and responses by others. The writer of the story does not present themselves in any way or show a form of bias. The writer speaks in third person about the main character and the events the happen. The structure of the book created by the writer is simplistic and themed due to the book being child focused. Since this is a child-oriented book, the main audience is geared towards children and parents with an interest in architecture, however the theme of architecture throughout the story, and the protagonist himself suggests that this book is focused for children interested in the realm of architecture.
The message that can be taken from this story is that no matter what other people say about your passion as an architect or other, don’t let it belittle you from doing what you enjoy. This message is developed throughout the story by using cause and effect in which the cause is Iggy Peck being told to stop his architecture creations by his parents and discouraged by his teacher, in which the effect is Iggy Peck acknowledging their claims but continues with his interest in architecture. The message is also built through the use of imagery and rhyming in the text, as well as illustrations that accompany it. For example, the book contains several colorful illustrations that bring the text to life with the exact words being depicted in imagery. As well as the use of cause and effect where in the story, the protagonist and the class are discouraged from architecture by the teacher, which is met with the students using architecture to change the teacher’s perspective. The writer of the story uses the theme of cause and effect, imagery, illustrations to convey the message of “not letting others discourage you for your interests” to an audience of children with an interest in architecture.
The task of writing a rhetorical analysis is one that involves critical thinking and close examination of a written piece. I believe this practice has made me more involved with analyzing texts by connecting their key elements in an encompassing manner. I have also learned that rhetorical analysis does not apply to just books and articles but can also be applied to a wide variety of media. This task has certainly supported me in my development in critical thinking and writing.
Rhetorical analyses are used to determine and connect the three main parts of a piece of writing, which are the speaker, audience, and message. Over the course of this class we have investigated a few pieces of media such as Manhattan apartment tours and Iggy Peck: Architect and examined them to create rhetorical analyses. Overall, the process of creating a rhetorical analysis is beneficial and allows for further critical thinking about a piece of writing.