Rhitorical Appeals in Literature

Topics: American poets, Rhetoric, American Book Award Pages: 3 (963 words) Published: February 13, 2012
Throughout the Three pieces of literature I read – “Superman and Me” by Sherman Alexie, “Crazy Courage” by Alma Luz Villanueva, and “Theme for English B” by Langston Hughes, multiple claims are implied on the subject of knowledge and individual power. Whether it is about Race, being different, or the struggle to survive, they all point towards the same direction. They all show that being strong, proud, and courage is what makes you individually powerful, even if others may look down upon you or think of you as weird. Through the use of the rhetorical appeals ethos, logos, and pathos, these three authors truly move the readers to really accept what they are trying to prove.

In “Superman and Me” by Sherman Alexie, the narrator’s claim is that if you do your best to obtain knowledge, even those considered to be low class can flourish and rise up in a world such as ours. In this specific case, the narrator turns his quest for knowledge into a fight to improve his life as well as the lives of his fellow Indian’s. He read whenever possible in hopes that he could escape the poverty of the reservation and make something of himself, unlike the other kids who purposely did bad in class and pretended to be stupid. Sherman Alexie uses the rhetorical appeal of Pathos, or emotion, as well as Ethos, to get his point across. He writes about how when he was a kid, no one was there to help them in school and teach them how to write properly, and how as an adult he Is continuously fighting to help kid’s in the same situation he was once in so that they do not have to go through what he did to succeed and become successful in life. There is no better interpretation of what Alexie is trying to prevent or solve as he himself was in the same situation that he is fighting to end to this day. He says “I am smart. I am arrogant. I am lucky. I am trying to save our lives” (Alexie Phar. 8). Throughout his essay, he shows how using his knowledge, arrogance, and luck he manages to “break...
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