Writing Basics: Creating A Rhetorical Analysis Essay

In order for the student to understand the basics of speech in communication, it’s important that they analyze the relationship between the work and the audience. For instance, when talking about a book such as the Catch in the Rye, it’s simple to discuss the book on its own terms as to what it’s referring to or it’s subject matter. However with relation to the audience, what does it refer to? How does it relate to them? This is more in the realm of rhetorical analysis.

There is much interest in these kinds of essays as they let the student become the middleman between the audience and the work. This can also apply to other things than just books so it isn’t limited to just one thing as the audience interacts with other mediums. Here we cover the basics of creating a rhetorical analysis essay

Rhetorical Research

The first thing the student should do is select their research around the book, sticker, sign, or anything that the audience is supposed to interact with, in relation to how the audience interacts with them. This requires some research that is conducted in a combination of ways:

  • - background of the item being researched
  • - psychological interaction
  • - interviews with people

All of these are just some options for thinking outside the box as there is no wrong or right way to gather information.


Once all of the information has been collected, it’s best to take begin to form other ideas from them and brainstorm. This allows the student to get deeper into their work and pull out things that aren’t obvious from the surface. This takes some time to do depending on the complication of the assignment as well as the work being written about. There is also no wrong or right way to do this as long as the student is able to translate their information correctly to come back to later.


It is here where the student started building the skeleton of their paper. Unless the professor was specific about the structure, this is like any other essay. The ideas are categorized to build the narrative in the order of the presentation so that the student can see the paper as it’s likely to look towards the end.


The audience doesn’t know the author or the interaction with the work besides what they see on the surface and it’s up to the author of the essay to take that and make it familiar to the audience. If it’s a critical rhetorical analysis then it’s up to the author of the essay to thoroughly examine the author with what they’re saying in their text to the reader just like other mediums. In the end, the audience as the test subject will provide a thoroughly examined conclusion.

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