Essay on Analysis of "Chonicles of Ice" by Gretel Erhlich

684 Words Jul 9th, 2011 3 Pages
“Chronicles of Ice” by Gretel Ehrlich
“Why did we trade in our ceremonial lives for the workplace? Is this a natural progression or a hiccup in human civilization that we’ll soon renounce” (Ehrlich 91)? Gretel Ehrlich asks these deep questions in her short informative essay “Chronicles of Ice” (2004). Ehrlich tells of her travels to The World Heritage glacier Perito Moreno, Argentina. In this short narrative, the author uses pathos and strong human related metaphors, to relay the direct correlation between glaciers and the well being of Earth. Ehrlich starts her tale, by giving information that supports her point but also gives insight to her personal experience. She introduces the physics in paragraph one, “Perito Moreno is 257 square
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Ehrlich says, “The retreat and disappearance of glaciers-means we’re burning libraries and damaging the planet…” (89). The author includes this deep thought burning quote to the reader to explain that there is a problem with the loss of all this environmental information these ice masses hold. Ehrlich makes this inference to repulse and further engage the reader into this natural disaster. Then follows step by step the effects melted glaciers would have upon the Earth. She starts with the Albedo effect, continues to the loss of ice and snow, and finishes with, “our sources of fresh water will disappear” (90). This addresses the effects aspect, but also appeals to audience, due to the fact that humans cannot live without freshwater. The author uses the human items of an air conditioner and sponge to dramatize the consequences of contraction glaciers. Ehrlich’s use of ethos is strongest in paragraphs eleven and twelve when she incorporates human cultures that are dependent upon the winter months for survival, saying, “The high-mountain peoples of Peru, Chili and Bolivia…Inuit cultures in Alaska, Arctic Canada, Siberia and Greenland….could disappear” (90). This long excerpt proposes the problem of large extinctions of the cold-living populace. She then follows up with the proposal that “winter might last only one day”…(90) Gretel Ehrlich finishes her tale with detailed description of the possible future, extinct town she buses

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