Dawn of Digital Natives

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Breanna Vegas
Steve Sweek
English 122. 603: Rhetorical Analysis
February 14, 2013
Summary and Analysis of Steve Johnson’s “Dawn of the Digital Natives”
In Steve Johnson’s “Dawn of the Digital Natives” reprinted in Writing Arguments, 9th edition, the author brings to light how the digital era has affected us in regards to our reading habits. Johnson displays how well versed he is in NEA report and how he feels their choice of focus narrows the accuracy of the reading statistics. He explains how their findings are skewed by only representing printed text. Johnson is a very throw writer and shows his expedience when reviewing the report regarding the decline of reading. Though his article is written very well, it has some room for improvement.

Johnson begins his article by relating to the reader on how there has been a decline in reading, especially in adults. He uses humors pathos stating, “It’s amazing a contemporary teenager can ever recognize a book, much less read one.” (Johnson 2) He says this in exaggeration, illustrating how the exhausted statistics that the NEA (National Endowment for the Arts) uses don’t quite correlate to the reading level of teenagers today utilizing ethos. He is familiar with this tactic that he calls, “our kids in peril,” that is eye catching for concerned parents and uses logos. Johnson goes on to share some NEA’s statistics such as this one which state that non required reading amongst adults has gone down 7% sense 1992. After reviewing the “alarming” data found by the NEA chair, Dana Gioia, though he phrases the situation in dramatic terms, “The data turns out to be complex, inconsistent and not really that alarming at all.” (Johnson 2) Johnson sarcastically relays the found data pointing out that there is a reason for the sudden influx ability to read yet sharp decline for those in high school. Timing takes an important role in both the NEA article and Johnson’s. Johnson seems to shoe the NEA’s pure logos while he used...
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