AP English III-8
28 October 2013
The Death of Benny Paret Rhetorical Analysis Essay
In his essay, “The Death of Benny Paret”, Norman Mailer elaborates on the memories of the night Benny Paret was beaten to death through this essay. Mailer weaves Paret’s moment of woe with imagery, similes and expressive structure to enthrall readers.
Mailer uses his first hand encounter to his benefit as he paints a picture depicting how Paret befell his fate. His choice of words describe the night with extraordinary details. “Paret began to wilt.” He had reached the prime of life and was fading quickly, the word alludes to death coming. Then as we were being lead to believe death strikes. “his limbs descended beneath him and he sank slowly to the floor” a final goodbye captured perfectly with words.
Similes riddle the page just as well, from describing the uncontrolled beating Paret took “the right hand, whipping like a piston rod” down to the haunting memory left ringing in Mailer’s brain “Griffith’s punches echoed in the mind like a heavy axe in the distance chopping into a wet log.” The similes let the reader relate the essay to events that might have taken place in their lives.
The unique structure of the essay depicts the essence of a boxing match much like the match that cost Paret his life. The long sentences are like boxers calculating their opponent’s next move, thought out with detail. The short sentences like a swift punch being thrown, state thing quickly not letting to much be exposed at once.
Norman Mailer enchanted readers with this essay. Unforgettably he paid his respects to Benny Paret, because through the essay his remarkable ending lives on.
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