Examinations Essay

Topics: Black Death, Narrative mode, Narrative Pages: 2 (760 words) Published: October 20, 2012
Certain forms of rhetoric may seem like they are set in concrete, but this is not true. The 75 Readings essays “The Plague,” “Once More to the Lake,” and “Talk in the Intimate Relationship: His and Hers” are labeled as a narrative, a description and an exposition respectively. The essays are much like human beings in that, labels are no more than mere words that help divide them into certain categories that they only kind of fit into. The lines that divide essays into their categories are fuzzy line a misty morning in that a narrative may also be an exposition. The essays from 75 Readings do not have to be labeled so strictly for they can be viewed as any other form of rhetoric. An example of a narrative that could also be an exposition would be “The Plague” written by Barbara Tuchman. Expositions contain a process, an example, and compare/contrast. “The Plague” shows a process with the succession of the black plague. Tuchman charts out how the plague spread across Europe. Examples are common in expositions, such as when Tuchman says, “In Siena, where more than half the inhabitants died of the plague, work was abandoned on the great cathedral, planned to be the largest in the world, and never resumed, owing to loss of workers and master masons and ‘the melancholy and grief’ of the survivors” (Tuchman 28). There is also a definite compare and contrast, in which Tuchman compares and contrasts the different ways the plague effected different parts of Europe. Like how in Paris, France the nuns of Hôtel Dieu tended the sick without fear of dying themselves while in Piazza, Sicily priests did not attend church to hear their flocks confessions because of their fear of death.

As with “The Plague”, the essay “Once More to the Lake” can be labeled as another form of rhetoric. “Once More to the Lake” written by E. B. White is labeled as a descriptive; however, it could also be labeled as a narrative. A narrative must have, at least, a point...
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