This essay asks you to identify a rhetorical text for critical analysis and to p
This essay asks you to identify a rhetorical text for critical analysis and to place your selected text in its historical, political, and cultural context.* First, you should introduce the text, and describe the circumstance of its production and distribution. If you are analyzing a speech, for example, you should describe who delivered it, where and when. If you are looking at a protest action, you should describe what took place, where and when. If you are looking at a printed text, describe who produced it (group or individual) and how and where it was distributed. Second, you should begin to establish the importance of your study. Why is the text worthy of attention? What is important about it? Also, how does it contribute to the ongoing conversation among rhetorical critics and other scholars of rhetoric? Does it demonstrate clearly a particularly aspect of a rhetorical theory? Does it employ unusual rhetorical strategies or appeals? Or is it interesting largely because of its reach, influence, or endurance? You should also describe the text, and summarize its main ideas, themes, and structure. What are its unique or important substantive and stylistic features? Finally, what will you focus on in analyzing the text? Are you interested in lines of argument? The language used? The ideas it evokes? What is it that draws you to the text? This will be much further developed in the essay where you discuss you approach to analyzing the text, but you want to begin it here. Third, you should place the speech or text and the issue it addresses into a historical and cultural context and argue for their rhetorical importance. You should look at what the course readings say about what to consider in d the context of a rhetorical text. Look also at the context section of the critical essays we’ve looked at. Though they may not be clearly labelled as such, each essay provides a discussion of the context in which the test is considered. In some instances, context will be primarily historical, in others it will be more political or cultural. The essay on Roosevelt, for example, included historical information about the Great Depression and about how Roosevelt had responded to it, as well as a summary of the conflict between Roosevelt and the Supreme Court (Bisbee). The context for the text depends on your purpose. You as a critic need to decide how much and what kind of context your readers need to fully understand your analysis. Remember that your research should focus on scholarly books and peer-reviewed scholarly journal arguments and primary source accounts of events where appropriate, and make minimal to no use of popular sources (e.g., popular magazines, personal or commercial websites). A revision of this essay should be incorporated into your final critical essay. Papers should be typed, double-spaced, using standard 1-inch margins and a standard 12 point serif font (e.g. Times New Roman), with no extra spacing between paragraphs. Length of papers is determined by a word count of the main text of the essay, excluding headings, references, abtract, etc., rather than by page length. Essays must be submitted to Canvas and as a hard copy in class. You will receive your grade on Canvas and comments on the hard copy. Essays will not be considered complete until I receive both an electronic copy on Canvas and a hard copy; incomplete essays will receive a failing grade no higher than a 60%. Be sure to include a word count as a part of the heading or title page of each essay. Source: Brummett, Barry. Techniques of Close Reading. 2nded., Sage, 2019.

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