In Defense of Darkness Rhetorical Analysis Essay

1134 WordsApr 2, 20135 Pages
In Holly Wren Spaulding’s essay, “In Defense of Darkness,” her main claim is that we have fallen away from darkness and immersed ourselves in a society of lightness. Furthermore, she claims this has lead humans to lose touch with basic human emotion as well as the sensual and spiritual experience true darkness has to offer. Spaulding makes this claim evident through exceptional use of personal testimony and copious appeals to value. Spaulding begins her essay with a detailed personal testimony that describes the deep emotional connection she feels for darkness. In part of the second paragraph she states, “the sky and shore and water were all one inky darkness though stars sparkled on the watery surface,” (83). This description of the…show more content…
She takes advantage of her passion for the darkness as a way of persuading her side of the argument, placing greater favor upon the peacefulness in darkness versus chaos in the light. Also her description of her emotions when she is surrounded by darkness suggests that our busy lives in the light have taken relaxation away from our lives; darkness helps us fall back into simpler times and serenity. Next, Spaulding places her appeals to value upon the light/urbanism. She states, “We modern, industrial, technological Homo sapiens favor light,” (84). This is the start of her counterargument; she explains the importance of light in our technological society. Spaulding shows how it has become a security blanket that has caused us to slowly move away from darkness, almost as if it was an enemy. Which brings her to consumer capitalism and how institutions draw us into products taking advantage of light and brightness. Because consumer capitalism is a way for institutions to control us, Spaulding is suggesting that they are in control of the obsession with light; they make sure it surrounds us showing us “the action is here, this is the thing to buy, we are open for business, this is the way,” (84). While the previous paragraphs considered the value we place upon light and served as a part of Spaulding’s counter argument, it also built up for her qualifying argument. She has acknowledged that humans prefer light and claims “But why not
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