Questions tagged [rhetoric]

The art of effective or persuasive speaking or writing, especially the use of figures of speech and other compositional techniques. Use this tag for questions on rhetorical devices and techniques, or rhetorical analysis/rhetorical criticism.

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How to describe an explanation that merely justifies the current proposition by reference to another unproven proposition?

I'm proposing an explanation for phenomenon "A". Other folks say "No need! We already have an explanation for phenomenon A, it's a natural consequence of phenomenon B". Problem is, ...
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I'm trying to identify a literary device in formal rhetoric

Plainly put, I am writing a commentary on the book of Galatians, while employing a socio-rhetorical analysis. The writer introduces himself as an Apostle, establishing his authority, and concludes ...
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“Dear Stack Exchange, I am very disappointed in you” - How to construct a strong opening line in a letter?

In light of recent events, I intended to write a simple letter of complaint to StackExchange. The obvious thing to do would be to write an opening with the fact such as It came to my knowledge that ...
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Is there a good reference book on allegories used in literature?

Is there a good reference book on allegories used in literature? I am looking for a reference book that gives references to use of allegories in the creative literature. For example: If a novel uses ...
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Ironic Juxtaposition or Antithesis?

The human animal is a beautiful and terrible creature, capable of limitless compassion and unfathomable cruelty. This is taken from the lyrics Sophia by The Crüxshadows. It had stuck with me for so ...
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Modernized dialogue in fantasy - stylistically untrue or clever genre subversion?

I find myself using words like "kiddo", "bullshit" and "badass" in the more comedic side of dialogue/thoughts in my fantasy novel. At first it was simply me not paying attention, and not caring as I ...
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Subverting the essence of fictional and/or religious entities; is it acceptable?

I talked to a critique partner not too long ago about an angel in my book. I said, he was a subversive character, in the way that he wasn't 100 % pure and good, like angels in theory are supposed to ...
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908 views

How do I sound like Thanos when I write?

This is really a dumb question but as a fan of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, I have watched Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame so many times. One of the most interesting things that popped ...
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Books and resources to help me understand the rhetoric of other people's writings better

I am a new writer learning to write. Before I can write, I am learning how to read critically and analytically. Recently, I read a book on style, which gives good analyses on the rhetoric of a few ...
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173 views

Using spoonerism for a non-humoristic purpose

I found this interesting figure of speech called spoonerism. Here's the article: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spoonerism Now, I have been wondering if spoonerism can be used in a non-humoristic ...
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What's the effect of placing “of course” at the beginning or at the end of the sentence?

Example from my writing: Not everything was rainbow and roses, of course. Sometimes rain would fall on my head or a thorn prickle my finger. Of course, not everything was rainbow and roses. ...
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What is this 'pretend dialogue' technique called

There's a style that is popular on blogs, and takes the form of a dialogue between the reader and the author, where the author provides both sides of the argument, like a ventriloquist. Often there's ...
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Rhetoric vs Figure of Speech

From Wikipedia, I learned that figure of speech is change of general usage of words. When it's a change of the ordinary or expected pattern of words, it is called "scheme", while when it's a change of ...
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What literary techniques are evident in this quote?

What literary techniques are evident in the following quote? I read each bullet scar in the Quai stonework With an eerie familiar feeling, And started at the stricken, sunny exposure of ...
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Rhetorical devices in Frankenstein

I wanted clarification on what techniques are employed in the following quote: I was benevolent and good but misery made me a fiend. Is this an example of high modality, antithesis - or is there ...
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What makes writing emotional?

Over the years, my English professors seem to have agreed on one thing: that I'm a superb technical writer, but terrible at eliciting emotional response in something like a story or an argumentative ...