I Am Not Your Negro(Documentary)

English Composition II
Essay Three: Rhetorical Analysis Argument
Value: 150 points
Within a text, an argument exists that may contain claims, sub-claims, evidence, and appeals. To
understand the texts argument and rhetorical situation, a reader/writer should recognize and
summarize the claim(s) as well as analyze the evidence provided. Moreover, this analysis should
include an evaluation of the rhetorical appeals (ethos, pathos, and logos), which should provide
merit to the texts overall persuasive context and nature. Further analysis may include the
discussion of shared values and warrants to strengthen the evaluation.
Writing Prompts and Rhetorical Situations:
Option 1: Choose a documentary film that focuses on an issue and argues a position.
Study the film you have chosen and write a rhetorical analysis argument essay. You can
find documentary films from various places: or Films
on Demand (via the Library). For Films on Demand, you will have to enter your
OCCC Login and Password to access the films, unless you are on campus.
Option 2: From the textbook, choose an essay, poem, comic, image, or other thematic
genre that focuses on an issue and argues a position. Study the text you have chosen and
write a rhetorical analysis argument essay. While any reading selection in the textbook
will work for a topic idea, you might decide to focus on one of the issues listed in the
Table of Contents: Education and Society; Family Life and Gender Roles; History,
Culture, and Civilization; Government, Politics, and Social Justice; Business and
Economics; Media and Popular Culture; Literature and the Arts; Philosophy, Ethics, and
Religions; Health and Medicine; or Science and Technology.
Follow a Writing Process:
Before writing the essay, make use of invention techniques to begin identifying the
claims, evidence, contexts (social, political, cultural, and economic) and rhetorical
appeals within the text
Planning includes identifying positions, establishing main ideas (or topic sentences) for
each paragraph, supporting each paragraph with appropriate evidence, and creating ideas
for the introductory and concluding paragraphs.
Draft and revise the essay as needed or as directed by professor
Method of Organization:
Introduction: Introduce the author and the work, briefly provide a one-two sentence
summary of the work, and then provide a thesis statement that includes how effective or
ineffective this work is to an audience
EH Division 2
Body Sections:
Section I: What is the context? Is it political, social, cultural, religious, or economic?
What makes it this way? Provide examples from the text to support your ideas.
Section II: What is the overall message? What is the author trying to say or what issues is
he/she addressing? Do you agree or disagree with this message? In this section, you will
introduce a source of authority who agrees with you about the message.
Section III: What are the appeals of the text? Is the text heavy in pathos, ethos, or logos?
Does a balance exist? Does the writer use any of the rhetorical appeals unethically? Did
you notice any logical fallacies? Are there areas where you agree or disagree with how
the rhetorical appeals are being used?
Conclusion: Summarize your main ideas and conclude with a final evaluation or
judgment of the authors work. Consider ending with a question or a quotation to engage
the reader.
MLA format
4-5 pages (double spaced)
In-text citations in the body of your essay
Works Cited page with your credible sources
A minimum of two sources
Invention techniques, planning and organizational structure, rough draft, revision
material, and final draft


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