Rhetorical Analysis Rhetorical Analysis: The Book The following questions will guide your inquiry and organization for the first part of the project: What overall purpose does the book serve? Is the overall purpose clear or hidden? How does the book want to affect or change the reader? How did the book actually affect you: did its purpose succeed? What types of information is published in this book? What thesis or argument does the book present?
Rhetorical Analysis: The Chapters Examine 3-4 chapters from the book. Required questions should be answered as they will help frame your rhetorical analysis of the chapters. You do not have to answer all of the supplemental questions. I suggest that you answer at least two to four of these questions per chapter. You can answer the supplemental questions in a different order than listed below, depending on how you would like to organize this portion of the rhetorical analysis.
Required Questions What question(s) or problem(s) does the chapter address? What are the key moments or key passages in the chapter? Supplemental Questions What assumptions (about the subject, culture, reader, etc.) does the chapter make? Are there problems or contradictions in the chapter? What bothers or disturbs you about the chapter? Where do you agree or disagree? Why? Based on the content of the chapter, who is the intended audience? Are you part of the intended audience? Why or why not?
What assumptions does the writer make about the reader’s knowledge or beliefs? Conclusions Once you have a general idea of the book’s purpose, audience, and use of language, use the following questions to make some more specific conclusions about the text: What assumptions does the book make about the reader’s knowledge or beliefs? What context or point of view do the chapters come from? How does this affect the way you read the text? What does the language of the book reveal about the writer’s priorities, assumptions, and values?