Archive for March, 2010

The Gospels as Rhetoric

Monday, March 29th, 2010

You don’t have to believe everything in the Gospels to be fascinated by the story and the rhetoric. Who were the authors? What was their audience? Since we don’t know much about the actual events, understanding the words, the language, is really our most important source for clues.You have access to a very solid online […]

Analyzing Rhetoric: Mark Twain on Funerals

Thursday, March 25th, 2010

In this piece from An Unfinished Burlesque of Books on Ettiquette, Mark Twain pokes fun at the social norms surrounding a very serious subject. In a well-written essay, analyze Twain’s attitude toward his subject and how he creates humor in the piece.
Consider such elements as tone, diction, selection of detail, and use of the unexpected. […]

Rhetorical Analysis: Analyzing Roosevelt’s speech

Wednesday, March 17th, 2010

Roosevelt on LeadershipTeddy Roosevelt believed that active and fearless leadership could accomplish almost anything. Apparently he wasn’t thinking too much about Oedipus or Macbeth.Read Roosevelt’s speech carefully and do a 2-3 page rhetorical analysis. Take your time, and post a good draft, at least the second or third, on Buzzword.Assignment is due Tuesday, March 23.

Starting Macbeth

Monday, March 15th, 2010

Read the first three scenes carefully.Write 2 carefully thought questions about each scene.Keep this as part of a running journal.

Where does Oedipus go Wrong?

Tuesday, March 9th, 2010

Aristotle thought that action was more important than character. What action, or actions, does Oedipus take that really cause his downfall? Are they justified? Does he have good reasons for his actions?Does the fact that the Gods foretold Oedipus’s fate relieve him of responsibility?Then there is the question of character. What is it about Oedipus’s […]

Where do you find tragedy?

Tuesday, March 2nd, 2010

Think about a movie you like and know well that fits the definition of tragedy.Tell me about it. Write a page that shows1) You understand the movie2) You understand and can use the Greek definition of tragedy.A very good source of basic information on the Aristotelian concepts of strategy can be found at this website.Total […]

Oedipus: Where Tragedy Begins

Tuesday, March 2nd, 2010

The Greeks: they had it all figured out. They thought deeply and clearly about ideas that tend to get more loosely and carelessly defined today.
Is there fate? Do we control our own fate?
What makes something tragic? What makes something comic?
What is tragedy supposed to do for us when we witness it?
Watch, and read Oedipus Rex […]