A Rhetorical Analysis Chapter 1

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CHAPTER 8 Showing and Telling: Description, Narration, and Example “I was this far away when the mailman threw his bag at me and started running. All I could see were legs and letters . . .” T he essays you write and the stories you tell come alive when you use description, narration, and example. Descriptive techniques help you show your reader what you see, hear, smell, touch, or taste. Narrative techniques help you concisely tell a reader a story that makes a point. Examples supply specific illustrations and instances in many types of writing. Description, narration, and example provide the foundations for many other types of essay writing. 120 CHAPTER 8 • Showing and Telling: Description, Narration, and Example 121 Focus on Showing…show more content…
You heard that?” And I would nod. Mamma would continue, “Sister, there are people who went to sleep all over the world last night, poor and rich and white and black, but they will never wake again. Sister, those who expected to rise did not, their beds became their cooling boards, and their blankets became their winding sheets. And those dead folks would give anything, anything at all for just five minutes of this weather or ten minutes of that plowing that person was grumbling about. So you watch yourself about complaining, Sister. What you’re supposed to do when you don’t like a thing is change it. If you can’t change it, change the way you think about it. Don’t complain.” THINKING ABOUT THE ESSAY 1. 2. 3. Examples provide specific instances that help a reader understand a more general point. Look at the two specific examples of complainers: Brother Thomas in the second paragraph and an unnamed whiner in the third paragraph. How do those specific examples help you understand what a whiner does in general? In other words, if you were the proverbial visitor from another…show more content…
In a descriptive essay, every detail should join in conveying a single dominant impression. A dominant impression helps to convey your attitude toward the subject and aids in the unity of your description. If you are writing a description of a house that you pass every day, your description should show more than shutters, bricks, and roofing tiles. What is your overall impression of that house? Is it cheerful? Eerie? Prim? Dignified? The word that you choose to describe the house conveys your dominant impression. As you describe the house, each detail should contribute to the dominant impression. When you write a descriptive paragraph or essay, it is helpful to include the dominant impression in the topic sentence of your paragraph or in the thesis statement of your essay. Stating the dominant impression helps you keep the paragraph or essay on track by reminding you of the impression that each detail should create. It also lets your reader know what to expect. If you are describing a house that is eerie, include details designed

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