Education Essay

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Hallie Garcia Ms. Odom ENGL 1301 27 September 2010 Emerson Essay Analysis Ralph Waldo Emerson’s essay on education reveals an intricate yet intrinsic outlook on the system of education in its entirety. In his essay, he takes a deeper look into the overall value and wholesomeness of what a true education is considered to be, and what a true education really should be. In his fifth paragraph, Emerson elaborates further into his thinking and presents clearer opinions in regards to how to completely open the mind of a child. Emerson defines the entire essay in his fifth paragraph by portraying the idea that education should not merely be based upon the subjects normally taught in school, but based upon life lessons, and morale as well. He also exudes belief in the fact that parents are the first and maybe even the most important teachers in a child’s life. Emerson is the speaker throughout the entire essay, his target audience being the society of educators, parents and maybe even children alike. He appeals to his audience’s ethos when he states “Give a boy accurate perceptions. Teach him the difference between similar and the same. Make him call things by their right names. Pardon him no blunder. Then he will give you solid satisfaction for as long as he lives.” Emerson conveys the message that children obviously commit errors and have to learn things as they are taught to them, along with the message that it is society’s responsibility to guide children down the proper path. Emerson makes it clear in this excerpt from the essay that the manner in which a child is taught, will connect with the way the child will learn and utilize his knowledge in the future. He appeals to logos in the fifth paragraph when he says “It is better to teach the child arithmetic and Latin grammar than rhetoric or moral philosophy, because they require exactitude of performance; it is
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