Analyze a visual text that conveys an argument

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Reference no: EM131422032

Analysis of a Visual Argument

The Purpose of the Writing Assignment

This assignment asks you to go beyond only considering the words in a text. You will also observe how visual elements, such as graphics, typography, color, and placement, contribute to meaning and persuasion. By doing this you will practice arguing for a visual text's persuasiveness while being persuasive yourselves in doing so.

Visual arguments surround us in life and online. In our daily lives, for example, we are frequently confronted by advertising with very little textual content that is still highly persuasive. The Internet is also a medium that relies on words and images working together to make meaning. All of us must become particularly savvy consumers to understand how we are being persuaded by an argument's textual and visual components. Even those of us who are unable to detect how we are being swayed by visual rhetoric are still susceptible to this influence.

Therefore, this project is designed to help you to do the following:

Come to understand and write critically about the ways in whichaudience, purpose, and context motivate textual andvisual choices
Recognize when an argument is being made by a visual genre/text
Increase your visual literacy
Learn some of the basic elements of document design

The Writing Task

In an approximately 1-2 - page essay, analyze a visual text that conveys an argument. Make sure you don't just pick a pretty or decorative picture as it will be very hard to complete this assignment. The text you choose to analyze can be anything in the visual world across many genres and areas of culture - from political cartoons to popular advertisements, from billboards to photojournalism, from news clips to music videos.

This kind of analysis differs in significant ways from other writing you've done because it requires that you look through a visual rhetoric lens. Your argument should be about the strategic use of rhetorical appeals and the persuasive power of a particular image. Focus on HOW the image works, not simply WHAT it conveys; in other words, discuss how the use of rhetorical appeals determines the effectiveness of the visual argument and don't get distracted into arguing passionately about a particular issue or position.

To complete this essay successfully, you will need to discuss the specific and concrete elements of the image as visual evidence.You might begin by describing all the visual elements you see in as much concrete detail as possible:
What do you think is the overall argument and purpose of this image?

Who do you think is the specific persona and audience of the image?

What rhetorical appeals operate in this visual argument?

What are the effects of these rhetorical appeals on the persuasiveness of the text?

How do visual and verbal work together to convey an argument?

What is the significance of Kairos (or context) for the power of the image?

What would you like your readers to learn or think about in reading your analysis of the image?

What specific and unique perspective can you share about this image? What will be your argument for this paper?
When you write your analysis, begin by identifying the source and purpose of the visual. Then, examine its elements, considering how effective each is and how well various elements work together to create a convincing visual argument. End with a strong concluding statement that makes it clear why your audience must take your essay seriously.

Essay Formatting Instructions
Final drafts must be typed in 12-point Times New Roman or Calibri font. The default setting in Microsoft Word is 11-point Calibri, so remember that you will always have to go in and change the font size when you begin to write something new.

Make sure your essay double-spaced with one inch margins.

Staple your final draft in the upper left-hand corner.

Use only plain white paper.

There is no separate title page, so in the upper left-hand corner of page one, you will type your name, my name (Dair Arnold), course number and section (ENG 1201.215) and the date.

Use MLA format for citing sources. This applies to in-text parenthetical documentation and to Works Cited pages.
Follow image formatting requirements discussed below.

Image Formatting Instructions

You will need to insert the image into your paper and position it in a strategic place for best rhetorical effect. You can scan it in or save it off the web. Include a caption for the image, providing a Figure number. If it is a web image, include "date accessed." Make sure the visual text you are writing about appears on your Works Cited page.

Reference no: EM131422032

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