Essay on Logical, Ethical, and Emotional Argumentation

998 Words 4 Pages
Many people and organizations use writing and visual methods to persuade readers to their view. In such pieces, the author will use many different tricks and appeals in order to draw the reader to his or her train of thought. According to Andrea Lunsford in her instructional book The Everyday Writer, these appeals can be broken down into three main types – logical, emotional and ethical. A logical argument uses facts, statistics and surveys to back up what the author is saying and is commonly referred to as logos. An ethical argument is one that tries to build up the authors characters and prove to the reader that the author is qualified to give his or her views on the topic at hand. Ethical arguments are commonly called ethos. Finally, …show more content…
Overall, the argument uses pathos to play on the human fear of torture and sway the reader with no real logical backing. She uses quotes and phrases like “[torture] endangers our soldiers on the battlefield” and “damage[s] our country’s image,” calling on the sense of patriotism throughout America to turn the people against torture. Applebaum even goes so far as to throw out the baseless conjecture “the use of ‘special methods’ might help explain why the war is going so badly (Applebaum 37).” This appeal to emotion tries to sway the reader against torture by making the assumption that there is some connection between the use of torture and the effectiveness of enemy soldiers – a great example of the use of pathos to mislead readers. Just as “The Torture Myth” relied mainly on pathos and scattered logos, the “2011 Louisiana Life March Promo Video (Louisiana March for Life,)” a promotional video for an anti-abortion march on the Louisiana State Capitol building, relies on the same argumentative appeals. The list of sponsors appearing at the end of the promotional video provides the only ethical appeal for the argument. This appeal, though taking up just a fraction of the runtime, can be the difference between gathering just hundreds of supporters for a cause and gathering tens of thousands of supporters. The video provided one logical appeal in the statement, “Since 1973, nearly 500,000 Louisiana children
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