Rhetorical Analysis Paper - Rajski 1 David Rajski Professor Hadlock UCOR 101-01 Thinking and Writing Across the Curriculum 09 September 2016 Maya

Rhetorical Analysis Paper - Rajski 1 David Rajski Professor...

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Rajski 1 David Rajski Professor Hadlock UCOR 101-01 Thinking and Writing Across the Curriculum 09 September 2016 Maya Angelou’s “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings”: A Rhetorical Analysis In Maya Angelou’s “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings”, Angelou describes what she experienced living as a black citizen in early 20 th century southern states. From a rhetorical viewpoint, Angelou uses many techniques to assist her in describing her experiences. Her unique style of writing, her purpose, organization, and tone all help her develop a very detailed and moving paper. Although these were all extensively used, the writing tools she focused the most on to write her paper were ethos by citing experiences that were normal for black Americans to face during the time she wrote the essay, pathos by telling of her experiences of racism and segregation in the United States, and her unique style by using very detailed imagery and metaphors together to make the readers more easily understand the same emotions and thoughts that she had. Throughout her essay, Angelou continuously and effectively develops a style of both pathos and ethos. Since Angelou’s essay is told from a first person point of view, it is much easier for her to develop a sense of ethos by talking about her experiences facing racism. In the beginning of her essay, Angelou sets up the theme of the essay when stating “The Children’s section of the Colored Methodist Episcopal Church of Stamps, Arkansas, was wiggling and giggling over my well-known forgetfulness” (342). In this passage, Angelou subtly notes that the

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