Rhetorical Analysis Of Gerald Graff's Hidden Intellectualism

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Gerald Graff’s article “Hidden Intellectualism” asserts that academic settings, such as public schools, need to incorporate students’ personal interests into the school policy so that students are more inclined to engage in an academic mindset. The problem, however, is that the school systems do not attempt to tie non-academic material with academic assignments, therefore neglecting students the opportunity to engage in intriguing, intellectual conversation (Graff 245). Targeting students, educators, and administrators, Graff makes an effective explicit, qualified claim of policy as he utilizes the rhetorical strategies of ethos, logos, and pathos. Graff effectively uses ethos in his article by discussing a personal anecdote as well as utilizing some intelligent diction. When arguing that students would be more inclined to engage in an academic mindset if they were able to apply their own interests, Graff states, “I offer my own adolescent experience as a case in point” (245). By claiming that he personally struggled with academic engagement, Graff influences the audience to perceive him as a credible source. Not only does Graff prove his ethos through his personal anecdote, but he also builds his ethos by using impressive, complex diction. For example, Graff uses scholarly words such as “philistine,” “interminable,” and “rudiments” in order to present himself as a qualified, intelligent resource (247). By establishing his credibility, Graff strategically influences the audience to be convinced of his argument. Along with using his personal story as support for his ethos, Gerald Graff also uses his personal experience to strengthen his logos. He presents himself as evidence that applying personal interests to the school curriculum helps students develop an intellectual mindset, convincing the reader that he has sound support to his argument. Graff additionally references several outside sources to fortify his argument and provide factual support. For example, Graff writes, “When Marilyn Monroe married the playwright Arthur Miller in 1956 after divorcing the retired baseball star Joe DiMaggio, the symbolic triumph of geek over jock suggested the way the wind was blowing,” and this statement mentions a true

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