Torture Summary and Analysis

587 Words3 Pages
Torture Jonathan Alter employs the technique of acknowledging and refuting viewpoints multiple times throughout the essay, “Time to Think About Torture”. He brings up the fact that people occasionally lie when being emotionally broken during an act of torture, but then continues to provide examples of times psychological torture has been effective enough to prevent potential terrorist attacks. The techniques he uses are used well. He knows that the topics of discussion may not be well known, so as he tries to persuade, he also informs, and this helps the reader form an opinion on what they think of the topic. The tone that Alter uses is positive, yet remains firm. He focuses on trying to convince his audience that torture should be legal in some circumstances. He uses a tone that elicits patriotism from readers because he wants to provoke them so they will take his side. When he state “torture, ok, not cattle prods or rubber hoses, but something to jump-start the stalled investigation of the greatest crime in American history.” he is referencing the September 11th attacks, and asserts that nothing has really been done about the individuals responsible. And in order for this tone to work, Alter needs to have a specific audience in mind. The intended audience for this article can most likely be directed toward the American People. Alter refers to the attacks that occurred on September 11th and discusses the United States several times, so we get the sense that he is referring to a particular audience and one that can relate to him. This doesn’t mean that other individuals from other nations couldn’t be potential audience members, because in truth, the attacks that occurred that day affected many countries in the sense that it made them realize that it could possibly happen to them. We also see this article in different magazines, or newspapers because it is one
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