[Taken from the first edition of Writer / Designer]
Rhetoric: “the study of making texts that effectively persuade an audience toward change” (21)
Rhetorical situation: “the set of circumstances in which an author creates a text” (21).
- Author (25-26):
- How does the author (implied or actual) establish credibility?
- Does the author (implied or actual) have a certain reputation? Does the text work to support this reputation, or does it work to alter this reputation?
- If you know who the actual author is, can you find any historical or biographic information that will help you understand his or her credibility, character, and reputation?
- Will the audience trust this author? Why or why not?
- Audience (22-23):
- Who is the intended audience?
- Who might be the secondary audience(s)?
- What values or opinions do the primary and secondary audiences hold?
- Does the author appeal to these values or opinions in any way?
- Purpose (23-24):
- What do you consider to be the overall intention for the text? Why?
- Do you think there might be one or more secondary intentions? Why?
- Context (24-25):
- What is the medium? Why did the author choose this medium instead of another?
- Where did you find the text? What was the publication venue (book, newspaper, tv, web, etc.)?
- What were the historical conventions for this type of text? What materials, media, or publishing venues were available at the time?
- What are the social and cultural connotations within the text? What colors, pictures, or phrases are used? What technologies does the text use?
- How will readers interact with this text? Will they read it on their phone or tablet while walking down the street? on a desktop computer in a public library? on a laptop in their backyard?
- Genre (26-27):
- How might you define the genre of the text? Consider both a broad definition and a more specific definition.
- In what ways is the text similar to other texts within this genre?
- What key features make it part of the genre you’ve identified?