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artifact: https://www.youtube.com/watch v=7xX_KaStFT8
please follow guidelines
provide abstract
class textbook: RHETORICAL CRITICISM 4th edition, Sonja K. Foss

Paper #2 Rhetorical Critique of Public Communication Artifact (20%)

In this paper you criticize an artifact using one of the methods discussed in class, other than the Neo-Aristotelian method (don’t just analyze ethos, pathos, logos, etc.). YOU CANNOT USE A NEO-ARISTOTELIAN METHOD FOR THIS PAPER. You may choose any artifact, provided it has a significant message and is in the public sphere, and that is demonstrably persuasive. Points to consider:

1) Choose any artifact that is a persuasive message and is a public communication. It should have a significant message, be a complete artifact (not a partial clip or portion), and be in the public sphere (not private or personal communication). It can be a speech (like Paper 1), but can also be a film, ad, book, video, song, poster, flyer, e-zine, website, etc.

2) Explain the context of the message, the method or concepts you will use, and why. The background or context for the message should give an understanding of why this is an important or significant message. What is the specific background, or the “spirit of the times” in which this message is created

3) Include a research question which you are seeking to answer through this analysis, or at least a clearly identifiable central thesis or point in the overall critical perspective. Italicize this research question or thesis.

4) Analyze the message in light of a specific methodology (dramatism, narrative, ideology, genre, etc.). Avoid using a “laundry list” of theoretical ideas. Develop ideas in some depth. Support your arguments with clear examples from your artifact. Remember to let your artifact guide you in choosing the appropriate way to illuminate its characteristics. You may use concepts from a couple of different methods (i.e. narrative and feminism), but make sure one method is the primary emphasis for analysis.

5) Provide a section tying things together in some way. This should be more than just concluding remarks, rather, it should answer the “so what” question. That is, what do you gain from doing this kind of criticism; what do you learn about the message which, in turn, can contribute to further knowledge or social awareness

6) New: You MUST PROVIDE AT LEAST FIVE (5) REFERENCES WHICH ARE USED IN THE PAPER, CITED USING PROPER FORM, AND REPRESENTED IN A FINAL SECTION OF REFERENCES OR BIBLIOGRAPHY. You can use sources to develop your theoretical position, to give background to the issue, or to comment on the artifact. Your artifact itself counts as a reference AND MUST BE CITED.

7) You should include the URL to access the artifact online or provide a clear description of your artifact to your instructor. Consult with the instructor if this is a problem.

8) Attach an OVERVIEW OUTLINE of your paper at the front of the paper.

9) NEW: Provide an ABSTRACT (50-75 words) on the title page or before the outline that summarizes what your paper is about.

10) 6-8 pages TYPED, double-spaced, 12-point font, 1″ margins (Page length does NOT include the outline, abstract, title page, or bibliography).


1) To summarize key elements of the Narrative Paradigm, and distinguish it from a Rational World Paradigm
2) To distinguish narratives from other forms of communication, and explain how narratives uniquely create a sense of personal involvement
3) To explain the various elements of narrative, and apply these elements when analyzing differences and similarities between narratives
4) To evaluate narratives using criteria relating to narrative objectives, fidelity, and coherence.
Working Vocabulary: Narrative, Narrative Paradigm, Rational World Paradigm, Objectives, Setting, Character, Flat, Round, Antagonist, Protagonist, Trait, Narrator, Events, Kernels, Satellites, Temporal Relations, Causal Relations, Theme, Comedy, Tragedy, Romance, Irony, Fidelity, Coherence, Public Memory, Ludology, Meta-Narrative
What is the Narrative Paradigm In Communication, who had primary responsibility for developing it How is it different from the rational world paradigm Perspective (by Walter Fisher) in which people are seen as storytellers; most meaningful communication experienced and understood as a narrative (with conflicts, characters, beginning, middle, end)
Paradigm situates human responses and decisions and evaluating the story being told, and whether the story offers good reasons for responding positively or negatively; public policy issues are not as much about evidence as they are about how believable and consistent the story is told
What are Foss four criteria for something to be a narrative How do we distinguish narrative from other types of rhetoric 1. At least 2 events
2. Events organized by time
3. Must include casual or contributing relationship among events
4. Must be about unified subject
In what ways do narratives create a sense of personal involvement 1. Narrate world is particular (specific, detailed, connecting imagery)
2. Narratives are sharable (share via conventions, form, content)
3. Narratives invite personal evaluation (share the moral and evaluation of behaviors and actions the story)
Objective of the Narrative
From the list of objectives for narratives that Foss offers on pp. 311-312, which would apply to these stories:
*Reading The Little Boy Who Cried Wolf to your children
*Sharing about a bad teacher you had in school after a friend takes a nightmare class.
*Telling about your participation in HS plays at a college freshmen orientation group Teach, instruct; socialize into a community; convey truths and values
Heal from loss or disappointment; comfort or bring relief
Construct identity; maintain or create community
Features of the Narrative
What are the first four features of a narrative according to Foss

1. Setting
2. Characters
3. Narrator
4. events
What are a second set of features of narrative listed by Foss

temporal relations
casual relations
type of narrative
Assessing the Narrative
What standards exist to evaluate a narrative

Objective to convey truth or values, assess how indexes of values are embedded in the story
Objective to adopt a particular view, assess persuasibility, perhaps coherence, or how the story hangs together
Objective to defend or justify action, assess fidelity, or truth quality for community addressed by the sotry
For Hess, looking at Public Memory in video game narrative, what is Ludology and what concepts does he use to help critique the game What are meta-narratives and personal narratives he finds as key elements of the video game Medal of Honor: Rising Sun What implications does he offer Lud.: study of computer games and game culture to understand the role of digital technologies in a mediating social interaction and organizing subjects in a contemporary society. Uses concepts of immersion
(nationalistic revenge, pride) Use of veteran interviews, letters fro home , valorizes individual action for nationalism
(griffin searching for brother, construction of Japanese enemies as ruthless and willing to torture, constructs characters of self as player, self as soldier, and self as nation)
story of historical and personal vengeance, self as a morally and technologically superior, heroic, nationalistic. Privatizes public memory of war, with a distinctive frame of violence, and veteran narrative histories may be selective
In Hollihan and Riley s analysis of Toughlove groups, what was their primary methodology What four themes emerged from the parent stories of abuses by their children What are their implications Method: observed ToughLove supports group twice, then categorized statements from the notes into 1)storylines 2)questions or comments to other parents 3)procedural issues by leader
Themes: 1)offering good reasons to reject modern child-rearing techniques 2)parents disdain from child-rearing professionals 3)the system is pro-child 4)put ToughLove into action by setting bottom lines

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