Rhetorical analysis on “Digital Demands: The Challenges of Constant Connectivity”
In Sherry Turkle’s piece “Digital Demands: The Challenges of Constant Connectivity”, she has expressed her feelings on the increased demand for technology in the contemporary world. The purpose of Turkle was to address the issue of advances in technology and demonstrate that technology has become part of our lives and that people must not rely on it as the sole source of knowledge (Turkle 520). In order to convey the message to her audience, she adopted an informative, yet argumentative tone. In the article, Turkle has used a number of rhetorical measures to pass on the information effectively. This paper provides an analysis of these rhetorical tools.
For a persuasive argument to be successful, an author or a speaker must apply three rhetoric tools. Notably, the used tools that include ethos, logos, and pathos have to appeal the audience’s emotions, convincing them on the author’s credibility and having indisputable logic (Sproat, Driscoll and Brizee 1). Ethos addresses the speaker’s credibility. This means that the targeted audience must be convinced that the author possesses the right qualifications academically to discuss a subject matter. Pathos is the author’s ability to have an impression to the emotions of targeted audience, whilst logos calls for verification of arguments through the use of facts (Sproat et al., 1). With regards to the article, Turkle has effectively used all these tools in the interview.
Turkle’s credibility is reputable for she has been an MIT professor for more than thirty years. In the interview, she has provided an account of how she has changed the attitude of students under her mentorship with regards to their perceptions towards education and communication resulting in fast development of communication technology. As a result of advances in technology, instructors are no longer in a position to stimulate student’s ability to pursue learning. Turkle notes that youngsters have lost interest in thinking for themselves on complex matters because existing and reliable technology has made learning in institutions easy for them (Turkle 520). Subsequently, Turkle has been left wondering if human and educational purposes of learning are being realized even after acquiring assistance from technology (Nieman Reports 2).
Technology advancement has prompted students to be in a position to perform dramatic and exiting activities, including PowerPoint presentations. Primarily, the use of presentations has been deemed as incredible modes of relaying information to the targeted audience, but cannot replace critical thinking. For instance, critical analysis of literature is more appropriate and cannot be compared to the use of technology to generate concepts. In this context, the use of technology is more concerned with acquiring and staying connected with the real world, which compromises actual communication. Concerning pathos, Turkle has been able to appeal to the audience’s emotion when she asserted that current generation has become more willing to communicate via text, contrary to the traditional method of using text messages or face to face communication (Turkle 520).
In the interview, she stated that technology has promoted the need to enter into relationships with others without the need to go through friendships or intimacy pressures. Moreover, being connected to technology has enabled people to develop free relations with other people in a natural setting (Turkle 520). On the other hand, teens have constantly remained in panic of being detached. For example, this has been illustrated when a teen misplaces an iPhone, where the teen relates the experience of losing an iPhone to one of grieving the loss of an aggrieved person (Turkle 520).The implication made is that people using technology are not in a position to freely express their feelings except when they are technologically connected.
The actions of these groups are guided by technology, which has let their feelings out. Thus, without technology that is supposed to arouse their feelings, the current generation remains dead and empty from the inside. By further expounding on the role of technology, Turkle (520) asserts that it has robbed humanity’s aptitude to concentrate on one thing during a specific time, and as a result, she has appealed for logic. Technology has subsequently made people less efficient when undertaking activities. For example, students may be in a seminar or a lecture hall, while in the real sense they are physically connected to the outside world through phones and laptops. Thus, having privacy is quite challenging hitherto, it is vital pre-requisite to ensuring personal identity.
Turkle (520) has recognized Erik Erikson’s work related to the creation of identity among adolescents (Nieman Reports 3). For instance, teens can be bombarded with information at a go, which makes it hard to have tranquility. Moreover, they lack the opportunity to live purposefully. Turkle has also cited Freudian opinions.
In conclusion, Turkle insists that technology has affected the way people communicate and express their feelings. She has opined that technology should not replace humanity, and that it should not be relied upon as the only source of knowledge. Rhetoric tools have well be used and they have enabled Turkle communicate to the targeted audience.
Nieman Reports.“Digital Demands: The Challenges of Constant Connectivity.”Nieman Reports, 2010.Web. 14 Sep. 2015. <http://www.nieman.harvard.edu/reportsitem.aspx?id=102403>.
Sproat, Ethan, Dana Lynn Driscoll, Allen Brizee. “Aristotle’s Rhetorical Situation.”27 Apr. 2012. Web.14 Sep. 2015.<https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/625/03/>
Turkle, Sherry. “Digital Demands: The Challenges of Constant Connectivity.” In John Ramage, John Bean, and June Johnson. Writing Arguments. 9th ed. New York: Pearson, 2012. Print.