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Philosophy Rant on Aristotle’s Rhetoric and its Influences
Motivate: Wanting to, is not the only way to achieve our goals. To be able to actually convey our thoughts into something greater, to persuade those who hear us is the most important part of a successful speech. If we aim to be successful spokespeople, knowing what Rhetoric is, and how to use it is essential.
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Point #1: Pathos
Supports: Ethos is a word related to the English word “Ethics” it refers to how trustworthy is the person who is giving the speech, or the person who writes the work. Ethos can be used to persuade since it appeals to the credibility of the person we are listening, or reading. If we believe the person we are seeing, we will believe what that person says (The Rhetorical Triangle 1). For instance, if one of our parents tells us something, we will believe it because we trust them. We might not understand what they are saying, or asking, but we will do as we are told because we believe they know what they are doing.
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Point #2: Pathos
Supports: Aristotle identifies pathos with emotions. To the philosopher, to be able to understand the people’s emotion would make us more effective speakers (Kennedy 100). If we know what our emotions do, and what we can do with other people’s emotions, we shall persuade those who listen to us. A speaker that employs correctly the Pathos in its speeches has to appeal to the shared values it might have with the audience; avoid manipulation, or using emotional references, and draw on strong imagery and symbols to appeal to people’s emotions. Pathos is often confused with manipulation. That is something the speaker must avoid.
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Point #3: Logos
Supports: Logos refers to the argument itself (SEOP 1). It offers debatable thesis and presents logical argumentation. An argument whose logos is well thought shall present logical organization while providing details and establishing evidence for future observations, as well as supporting its claims with reasoned statements. Briefly, logos is the way a speaker has to appeal to the intellect, to be able to convey an idea that can be understood and reasoned. It is possible that an argument that appeals to the credibility, and to the audiences emotions lack the chains of reasoning necessary to support its claim
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Point #3: How to Use Ethos; Pathos; and Logos in a speech
Supports: Son, I am your father. The house is falling down, and I’m afraid. If the house falls down, we are all going to die.
The doctor told me I am not sick. I have always wanted to kiss you If you kiss me I will release endorphins, and that would make me feel great.
There is no need to tell not to play with scissors, you might hurt yourself, and you might lose a finger.
Action: As you can see, persuasion can be used to convince and convey our ideas. However, those who are better at persuading are those who do not manipulate those who are listening. Manipulation is the lowest technique a spokesperson could use to achieve something. A great spokesperson is that who is capable to create an atmosphere of trustworthiness employing the correct words. In the same way, the best orators are those who apply ethos; logos; and pathos correctly
Kennedy, George and Alexander. Aristotle On Rhetoric: A Theory of Civic Discourse. New York: Oxford UP, (1991): 119. Print.
Aristotle . Aristotle’s Rhetoric. Retrieved Rapp, C. Web. 2002, May 2.http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/aristotle-rhetoric/The Rhetorical Triangle. (n.d.).Web.HYPERLINK “http://www.public.asu.edu/~jvanasu/rhet-%09triangle.htm”http://www.public.asu.edu/~jvanasu/rhet-triangle.htm
Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.Web.