How to Write a Rhetorical Analysis Thesis Statement

How to Write a Rhetorical Analysis Thesis Statement

You need to know how to write a rhetorical analysis thesis statement because this statement gives a rhetorical analysis its focus. A good thesis also makes the introduction of a rhetorical analysis successful- Rhetorical analysis refers to a process that entails the evaluation of the way a creator of a work makes an argument. It does not focus on what is said in the argument but the analysis of the purpose of the work as well as the strategies that the creator of a work uses to realize that purpose.

As such, a rhetorical analysis aims at considering the impact that the work has on the audience while determining if it was successful in persuading the audience or not. A rhetorical analysis thesis statement is therefore a statement that states whether the rhetorical strategies that the author has used are effective in making the argument more convincing or not-

A step by step guide on how to write a rhetorical analysis thesis statement

  1. Understand your writing prompt

You should know the purpose of writing your rhetorical analysis before your draft a thesis statement. For instance, you may be writing a rhetorical analysis as a response to a particular question. You may have been asked to simply analyze an article, a speech, an advert or any other work rhetorically. Determine the purpose of writing a rhetorical analysis so that you can come up with a thesis statement that reflects your writing goal.

  1. Read the work carefully

Before composing a thesis statement for your rhetorical analysis, read the work that you are analyzing carefully to understand the argument and the used rhetorical strategies. Make notes while reading to enable you to go back to particular sections that you may not understand fully or wish to consider more in your analysis.

  1. Ask questions about the work that you are about to analyze

Consider whether the work provides adequate evidence and research in supporting the made claims. Also ask questions on whether there are assumptions that the creator of the work has made. Are there unanswered questions or gaps in the work? Can you notice bias in the work? How has the author considered alternative viewpoints? Take notes on such issues before drafting a thesis statement.

  1. Formulate a research question

A research question refers to a question that will focus your analysis to a specific aspect of the work that you want to analyze. It is the question that should be answered by your rhetorical analysis thesis statement. To draft a research question for your rhetorical analysis, ask journalistic questions which include who, when, what, why and where. Use the prompt of the rhetorical analysis to draft a research question.

  1. Know the structure of a thesis statement

In most cases, a thesis statement follows the thesis-support structure- This is a structure where the main claims comes at the beginning of a rhetorical analysis followed by the analysis and evidence that supports the claim in the rest of the body. Thus, a thesis statement is the drive of the analysis.

  1. Write a thesis statement for your rhetorical analysis

Anybody who knows how to write a rhetorical analysis thesis statement will consider certain aspects of the analysis in this step. The major aspects to consider when writing a thesis statement are the rhetorical techniques that the author uses to move the audience to his/her desired direction or purpose. Also analyze how effectively the author uses these techniques in accomplishing the goal of his/her work while writing a thesis statement. Come up with a thesis statement that answers the research question that you formulated in step 4.

  1. Narrow down the focus of your rhetorical analysis

Modify the thesis statement that you have written so that it can focus on two or one design aspects. These should be adequately complex aspects so that they can make writing the entire analysis easy.

  1. Make your thesis statement original

If you are making a specific argument regarding a text in your analysis, focus thesis statement on that argument. Consider the notes that you made in step 2 and questions that you asked in step 3 to ensure that you have sufficient evidence to support your claim in the body of the rhetorical analysis.

  1. Use the right words

Do not use words that make your thesis statement seem like it is passing a value judgment. Instead, use words like “ineffective” or “effective” in your thesis statement. Avoid words like “bad” or “good”.

  1. Revise your thesis statement

You can ask friends to edit your thesis or simply hire our professional editing service. Proper editing ensures that your thesis statement for a rhetorical analysis is stated well without glaring mistakes and that it can easily be understood by your audience.

Testing a rhetorical analysis thesis statement

Everybody who knows how to write a rhetorical analysis thesis statement must know how to test it. There are questions that you should ask while testing a thesis statement.

They include:

  • Does your thesis statement depict the depth of the analysis of the work that is being evaluated or is it simply a description of the work?
  • Is there an argument regarding the work that is presented by the thesis statement?
  • Does your thesis statement use the right wording?
  • Is it a contestable thesis statement or can it be argued about by someone else?
  • Can you defend your thesis statement because you have used expressions that qualify it?
  • Has your thesis statement considered the prompt for writing a rhetorical analysis?

Elements to include in a rhetorical analysis thesis statement

There are elements that you will include in a thesis if you know how to write a rhetorical analysis thesis statement.

They include:

  • Name of the creator of the original work and relevant information about them.
  • The target or intended audience
  • The type of work that is being analyzed. This can be a speech, article, essay, advert or a letter.
  • Primary tones that the creator employs in the piece.
  • A summary of what and how the speaker, writer or creator does in passing the message.
  • Statement of the overall purpose of the creating the work.
Sample rhetorical analysis thesis statements

The above step-by-step guide can make writing a rhetorical analysis thesis statement easy but sample rhetorical analysis thesis statements will make things easier for you.

Here are sample thesis statements that you can use as your guide for writing a strong rhetorical analysis thesis statement:

  • In his slightly critical and earnest speech during the Nobel Price Award event of 1950, William Faulkner, the renowned 20th century American fiction writer, effectively distinguishes useless and valuable writing in his attempts to convince aspiring and current writers to come up with lasting and meaningful literature that will serve as a reassurance and inspiration for humanity.
  • The humor that Jonathan Swift uses in writing is effective in engaging the interest of the readers because it compels them into considering the lower class’ plight. By using specific examples, Swift shows that he is knowledgeable about the subject and therefore he is able to present his compelling argument.
  • In the “Body Rituals” article, Miner has effectively convinced readers about the obsession of the Americans with body visual and health appeals which is a ridiculous nature. Minor does this by using academic tone, taking a common ground and using a detached diction that places readers on a scholarly observing level which allows them to establish a third-party opinion about themselves before they realize that they are the subject of the analysis.
  • The argument of James Stewart is compelling because it effectively encourages the audience to take the desired action since he establishes credibility but there are logical fallacies as well as the use of satire to appeal to the audience.

The work that you are required to analyze and the writing demands or situation should determine the kind of a thesis statement that you write for your rhetorical analysis- Always remember that the major thrust of a thesis statement ought to be the way the original work creates meaning while accomplishing its purpose.

Refine your thesis statement

After knowing how to write a rhetorical analysis thesis statement and writing one, you need to refine it by considering certain attributes of a good thesis statement- Refining a rhetorical analysis thesis statement entails ensuring that it serves its purpose.

A good thesis statement for rhetorical analysis should:

  • Tell whether the argument of the creator of the original work is effective on the basis of the used rhetorical strategies and logical fallacies.
  • Take a stand regarding the work that is being analyzed.
  • Introduce the work and the creator.

After writing a thesis statement for your rhetorical analysis, use these points to determine if it is effective and strong.

Get help with your rhetorical analysis thesis statement

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