Common Decency Susan Jacoby

1787 Words8 Pages
‘Common Decency’ written by Susan Jacoby, an American author, was originally published in the New York Times in April 1991. The main idea of Jacoby’s essay “Common Decency “ which was a written response to Camille Pagalia’s book “Sexual Personae “deals with the controversy over “date rape” and mixed signals between men and women. According to Jacoby, “Most date rapes do not happen because a man honestly mistakes a woman’s “no” for “yes” or a “maybe”. They occur because a minority of men –an ugly minority, to be sure –can’t stand to take “no” for an answer” (585). In her thesis, the author is stating that there is no such thing as accidental rape and the only reason it happens is because a few men act out violently when they are rejected. Jacoby…show more content…
The first strength I saw in Jacoby’s essay was her credibility. Credibility according to The Saint Martin’s Handbook, is “You can show that you have some personal experience with the subject” (Lunsford 166). The author sites her own experiences on the subject by providing the audience with her own personal story relating to the topic at hand. One example where the author does this is in the introduction of her essay she reiterates, “They were on their way to the bedroom when, having realized that she wanted only the man who wasn’t there, she changed her mind” (584). In this snippet it shows Jacoby’s using her own personal event to demonstrate knowledge about the topic, to show that she has first-hand experience with the relating material. The reason why this is a strength it shows the author has a general understanding of the topic as well as debunking critics who may assume that she has no experience in the matter. According to The Longman Reader Ethos “Refers to a writer’s reliability or credibility” (683). This is needed when trying to persuade your audience, because readers will agree with your point of view if they think that you have some sort of credentials on the matter or
Open Document