English 106: Introduction to Rhetoric and Composition

Division 29; Section 01

Visual Rhetoric Analysis

The difference between summarizing an author’s essay or purpose and analyzing that author’s piece of writing is small but significant. When analyzing, one has asked a question about the choice(s) an author has made in the form or content of their writing and attempted to determine how it relates to, determines, enforces, or contradicts the author’s purpose.

The same applies to analyzing visual rhetoric such as posters and advertisements. We will be studying the formal elements of visual rhetoric in Compose-Design-Advocate and discussing how these elements shape arguments that the visual rhetoric, and thereby its creator, intends to make. The visual argument can range from a call to arms over a national threat to a call to shop over a personal need. Our culture uses visual rhetoric to urge you to take a wide variety of actions.

For this assignment, you will find an example of visual rhetoric on campus that makes an argument; you will analyze the formal decisions made; and you will discuss how these formal elements determine, enforce, or even contradict the poster’s intended purpose. The analysis should be 2 pages long and include a copy of the visual argument.

Due:Friday, October 12th, at the beginning of class.