Friday, November 15, 2019

Rhetorical Textual Analysis of Attending to the Word

Rhetorical Textual Analysis of Attending to the Word Deidre Mahoney has been leaving pencil marks in books for years (398). She leaves comments and questions to material within the reading. Shell also mark important or meaningful words. It has helped her increase her awareness and be able to comprehend whatever she is reading at the time (398). She states the only way to read a book is to glide a pencil across the page (397). Why does this leave her classroom in a shock? As she teaches her students, she realizes there is something wrong with the school system because her students dont want to write inside their books (397). Students have been conditioned in elementary and high school to not write inside books that dont belong to them. Mahoney fears this restricts them from enhancing brain development and increasing awareness (400). In Deirdre Mahoneys article Attending to the Word, she argues her students cant comprehend intensive thinking while reading due to lack of pencil in hand to take notes (397). Throughout Mahoneys article, she uses a variety of rhetorical tools that support her argument. She uses a qualifier when she states why the students behave the way they do about writing in books (397). She understands the way theyve been conditioned and doesnt necessarily disapprove of their lack of penciling (399). It is a fact that students are told to not write in their books or textbooks during school. They have become accustomed to that rule. Once they realize that the rule doesnt apply, they dont know how to do something different. Writing in a book after not doing so for years is a big change, and many people dont handle change well. Mahoney uses the rhetorical tool of description throughout her entire article. She describes her worries, expectations, and the wishes she has for her students. In Mahoneys article, she uses first person point of view which helps her readers relate. Her article comes from personal experience; therefore, her audience will be more interested in reading. She writes in an easy-to-understand manner. She gets her point across and lets readers flow along with her as she talks. Mahoneys introduction is the strong suit of her article. It draws her audience in by using a general topic sentence. She doesnt give much detail right away, leaving her audience wanting more. Mahoney engages the opposing positions by ending her introduction with a question and then an answer to her question. The statement makes her oppositions want more information to argue against and to see why she believes the way she does. Mahoneys voice is seen in this article when she narrates her reasoning behind scribbling all over a books page (398). She voices personal experience and beliefs, which makes this article so empowering. She demonstrates the good, and little bad there is, throughout this piece. Within her voice, she uses contextual elements such as cultural context. She understands what students become accustomed to at a certain age (397). The major subtext she uses happens to be her voice. An opinion is strong because it is the only power a human truly has. Mahoney takes advantage of that throughout her article and persuades her audience to lean towards her side. Mahoney used many extra elements in her article. She used facts and appropriate language to operate through her article. Her facts, opinion, and language intensify her idea by drawing the attention she wants and then continuing to keep the reader engaged. Diedre Mahoneys context is shaped well because she clung to her topic throughout the entire article. Any ideas or points she brought in didnt stray away from the purpose of her writing. The context shapes the subtext in a way as well. The topic Mahoney chose to write about is a debatable, yet easy topic to understand. Putting together a subtext about such a topic comes easy. Mahoney seems to understand there are opposing opinions and she reacts to them well in her article. She is sure to see both sides and quickly come up with a response to anything one might say. Mahoney critically thought out her article and the elements she used within the piece. She could argue why students cant comprehend intensive thinking reading without a pencil in hand (398). She uses a strong voice, a strong topic, rhetorical tools, and writing elements to support her purpose and make her argument strong. Diedre Mahoney has successfully educated and informed her audience on the importance, or lack thereof, gracing a pencil along the page as it is read. Works Cited Mahoney, Dierdre. Attending to the Word. The Composition of Everyday Life. Ed. John Mauk and John Metz. Cengage Learning, 2016.

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