Rhetoric and Life

Topics: Rhetoric, Persuasion, Regulatory Focus Theory Pages: 2 (577 words) Published: November 28, 2010
Dylan Macknight
Mrs. Womack
Per. 6
14, September 2009.
Value of Life Essay
Different authors use different techniques to persuade. The three main ways of persuading are through: pathos, which uses emotions, ethos, which proves their credibility, and logos, which implies the general message. Shakespeare, Lance Armstrong, and Amanda Ripley have all written articles arguing their opinion on the value of life. Of the three articles Lance Armstrong best persuades the audience with his argument that life is very valuable and that you could better your life from something negative, through his exceptional use of both logos and pathos. Armstrong applies the use of ethos very clearly in his article. For example, “I still don’t completely understand it; all I can do is tell you what happened”. This shows that he is writing credible work and that his ideas are non-bias. He is telling the story as is and he is not trying to lead you on. Lance also uses pathos to persuade his audience as well. An example of this would be when stated “I have cancer”. Cancer is a serious disease and the thought of having it draws on someone’s emotions quite strongly. This quote made the reader feel sympathy for him. Overall, Armstrong did the best job at persuading. In Hamlet’s Soliloquy, Shakespeare uses ethos, pathos, and logos as an attempt to persuade his audience, but is not as effective as Armstrong. Shakespeare uses logos the most in his work. When he states “To be or not to be, that is the question”, he is portraying the message of how much his own life is worth, personally, not how valuable life is a whole. That is one downfall in Shakespeare’s work compared to Armstrongs. Another reason Hamlet’s Soliloquy is not as successful at persuading is because in his writing there is no one else to compare and contrast their life with. Hamlet is written as somebody who is contemplating suicide. It is very hard to understand someone’s thoughts and interpret them as they were...
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