Informal Writing 3

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For our third weekly informal writing, I’d like you to consider your rhetorical position for essay writing, and especially how you demonstrate your authority in your work. In rhetoric, an author’s (speaker’s) authority represents their ethos, while the evidence they present (logos) and the emotions they elicit from an audience (pathos), tend to reaffirm this ethos and might be the bulk of an argument.

As we construct narratives in critical writing, and in most argumentative writing, our position is established early on. We state our goals in a thesis or establish our reason for writing a work in order to orient a reader to the developing point we will make. In APA, much of this information is found in an abstract, but is later elaborated in the bulk of the text.

Thinking about our own position, and how we might establish it for a reader, consider the following questions and exercises:

Gloria Anzaldua uses language, memory, and ways she identifies in order to establish her position. What languages do you speak and how might they reflect on the topic of your midterm essay?

What memories do you have when you consider the topic? Whether they are direct experiences or associations, the things that come to mind around a topic can often inform our avenues of research and the elements we need to establish for a reader to follow our argument.

What identities of yours relate to your topic? How do you establish or reinforce these identities if your life, and how might that act of reinforcement or way of seeing the world influence your position on your chosen topic?

After answering these questions, find a second source for your essay that relates to one of these new elements of your topic. Give an annotation at the end of your informal writing.

Instead of answering the above questions, you might tell me a story or anecdote from your life that may relate in some way to your midterm topic. You don’t need to make an explicit connection in this story, but consider the details that might influence my understanding of your position. How old were you? Where were you? What did you think at the time, compared to what do you think about this event now? After you’ve written your story, separate the paragraphs you’ve written with white space. Reflect on each paragraph individually, and after a time of reflection, list three different avenues of inquiry that might inform this paragraph. Do this for each paragraph.

500 words Due 12pm Eastern Time


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