ENG 120 Grossmont College Rhe

Final Essay :

Rhetorical Analysis of Adichie or Wallace


SUGGESTED LENGTH: Five (5) Paragraphs

COURSE WORTH: 10% of your final course grade

Final Prompt

Your essay should develop a reasoned position in response to ONE of the following questions:

In her TED Talk “The Danger of a Single Story,” does author Chimamanda Adichie use rhetorical strategies effectively to achieve her purpose and appeal to her intended audience?


In his commencement speech “This is Water,” does author David Foster Wallace use rhetorical strategies effectively to achieve his purpose and appeal to his intended audience?

Your purpose is to analyze the rhetorical strategies that your chosen author employs in their speech to appeal to emotion, logic, and ethics. You will need to integrate textual evidence from their respective speech to support your thesis.

Tips for Success When Discussing Rhetorical Strategies

Remember to:

  1. Identify the rhetorical strategy.
  2. Describe how this strategy works.
  3. Cite evidence of this strategy.
  4. Describe why this strategy is used – what purpose does it accomplish.
  5. Always include a discussion of how this strategy helps the author to develop and support the argument.

Grading Criteria

Successful papers will…”

  • Effectively introduce the topic.
  • Briefly and accurately summarize the text’s argument and purpose.
  • Identify the intended audience for the text.
  • Include a powerful, focused thesis statement that responds to the prompt question (see above)
    • Your thesis should also establish your structure for the essay.
  • Support your thesis through your analysis of the rhetorical strategies that the author uses to appeal to emotion, logic, and ethics;
    • Smoothly integrate textual evidence from the text to support your analysis.
  • Thoughtfully conclude by offering your audience something to ponder about the analysis that you just did.

  • Be logically structured and use smooth transitions.
  • Accurately use MLA style and formatting – include in-text citations for all quoted textual evidence; at the end of your essay include a Works Cited citation for the text.
  • Be proofread and edited to build credibility with your academic audience. 

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