The following paragraphs, although combining all elements(ethos, pathos and logos) are predominantly based on one of the rhetorical strategies discussed.
Can you identify the paragraph that employs emotional language and which is based more on logic?
Can you find evidence of ethos in each paragraph?
Teenagers have no rights! Teens, by virtue of their age, are second class citizens in this country and National Service is simply another way to exploit them. The Canadian government, an assembly of geriatrics in Ottawa, has decided that teenagers, who cannot vote, should work for minimum wage for one year to improve our country and help alleviate the debt. Did teenagers create the debt problem? NO! Did teenagers agree to this? NO! This is slavery. And $8:25 an hour doesn’t change the fact that this is forced labour. In fact, if this is such a great idea, why don’t the members of parliament give up their big fat $160,000 salaries and volunteer? Doesn’t the Charter of Rights promise all Canadian citizens freedom of choice, freedom of movement and equal rights? This legislation makes it very clear that teenagers are not true citizens. Sure, some say National Service benefits teens by providing training and experience, but who really wants the experience of cleaning outhouses in provincial parks? As one Canadian teenager recently said, “What do you put on your resume, ‘I can shovel excrement, please hire me?’”
Legislating National Service would be an extremely effective strategy for eliminating the deficit and helping teenagers gain work experience. Firstly, teenagers would gain vast experience in many areas. National Service programs typically employ teenagers in areas of community service. The American plan to expand AmeriCorps, for example, focuses on special areas like strengthening schools, improving health care for low-income communities, boosting energy efficiency and cleaning up parks. These areas, particularly healthcare and education, are two of the most underfunded areas of government yet two of the most important. National Service is also a cost saving measure that would not only improve service in these vital areas but would also help alleviate an overwhelming public debt. Canada’s debt is currently at 569 billion dollars and growing. Kevin Page, Canada’s budget watchdog, has said that 46 billion dollars in tax hikes will be needed to sustain health care as the population ages. This is an unreasonable burden on the tax payer. Because National Service will reduce the cost of maintaining certain public services, it will help alleviate this debt yet ensure the health of Canadian citizens. As Barrack Obama recently said, “National Service is simply being a good neighbor.”
A GOOD EXPOSITIORY PARAGRAPH SHOULD -
- Present a clear position on the issue.
- Feature a clear topic sentence.
- Be well-supported (three reasons minimum)
- Clarify and explain all reasoning
- Use transitional words to unify the paragraph.
- Employ strategies to add tone.
- End with a concluding sentence.
1. HIGHLIGHT YOUR VERBS
-Are you using action verbs to bring the description to life?
- Remember words that end in "ING" are not verbs unless they have a helping verb before them.
Bill was arrested by the policeman chasing him. "chasing" is not your verb!
- DO NOT overuse: "started" and "began"
- Some verbs to try and avoid include
went, got, tried (use struggled), walked, said,
- And, try not to foretell events by having your character decide and think. In other words, can you avoid "decided" and "thought" and "knew."
eg. WEAK: He decided to get an axe from the trunk.
BETTER: He retrieved the axe from the trunk.
If he grabs the axe, he must have decided to do so.
2. AVOID "THERE WAS . . . "
eg. WEAK: There was a spider in the hallway.
BETTER: A spider skittered across the hallway.
3. DO NOT INCLUDE THE READER: AVOID THE PHRASE "You could hear . . ." or "You could see . . . "
4. AVOID VAGUE LANGUAGE:
Everything, everyone, all, anyone, things, stuff, everywhere, all over the place, seemed like, sort of like,
5. LOOK FOR REPETETIVE SENTENCE BEGINNINGS AND LENGTHS. TRY TO VARY YOUR SYNTAX. Add introductory phrases and words.