A Rhetorical Analysis of Anna Quindlen's The Wages of Teaching

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Does the Toughest Job Deserve More Pay?
A Rhetorical Analysis of Anna Quindlen’s “The Wages of Teaching”.
In the job field, teaching has always been previewed as a nine to five, easy money career. It is salary based, with weekends and summers off. In the 2005 editorial of Newsweek Magazine called “The Wages of Teaching”. Anna Quindlen fights to boost teacher’s salaries. Quindlen’s ethical appeal combined with a strong emotional appeal ties her audience into her cause. With the use of strong authorities, anecdotes and an analogy, Quindlen makes a very compelling case.

Quindlen’s first assertion is “Teaching is the toughest job out there”.(100) To uphold her assertion she uses anecdotes from her own first-hand experience and also quotes by a Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Frank McCourt. Along with these anecdotes she offers an authority from The Department of Education, based off their employee turn-over rates. Quindlen closes her first assertion with an analogy that exposes the effect that teachers have on American Citizens. These anecdotes along with the authority and analogy, make various emotional appeals to the readers. Bringing up anger to the assertion that teachers have the toughest jobs. And also a compassionate effect by persuading the audience to change their outlook on what a teacher’s job actually entails.

This section of Quindlen’s editorial is effective in convincing the audience that teaching is not an easy job. Quindlen makes a good decision by first introducing her own experience in teaching, because it reveals to the reader that she has some first-hand knowledge of the assertion she has made. She then supports her own anecdote by using another anecdote from McCourt’s book, “Teacher Man”. Quindlen takes a risk by supporting her assertion with an anecdote as strong as McCourt’s, because some of her audience might disagree that teaching is harder than manual labor. Which in turn, may cause her reader to dismiss the assertion...
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