Does Tal Fortgang's Essay Check My Privilege

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“Behind every success, large or small, there is a story, and it isn't always told by sex or skin color” (page 2, par. 15), Fortgang, T (2014). Some people base their success on their racial background. “Checking My Privilege” by Tal Fotrtgang was written in an effort to voice his opinion on this matter. In his essay, Tal Fortgang says, “I actually went and checked the origins of my privileged existence, to empathize with those whose underdog stories I can’t possibly comprehend. I have unearthed some examples of the privilege with which my family was blessed, and now I think I better understand those who assure me that skin color allowed my family and I to flourish today” (page 1, par. 3). As he continues to write, he uses the word “privilege” liberally throughout his essay. In this essay, I will be analyzing how the author uses the word “privilege” in his essay to gain credibility and an emotional response from his readers. …show more content…

Tal Fortgang’s credibility relied on the history of Polish families that fleeing from Nazi terrorism. He based his reference on the efforts of his parents and grandparents leaving Poland and obtaining started anew in another country. In his essay, Tal refers to “privilege” as the hard work and experience that his family went through by phrasing it like, “Perhaps my privilege is that those two resilient individuals came to America with no money and no English, obtained citizenship, learned the language and met each other; that my grandfather started a humble wicker basket business with nothing but long hours, an idea, and an iron will—to paraphrase the man I never met: “I escaped Hitler” (page 2, par. 6). He goes on to add his parents in as hard working “privileged” immigrant decedents as well. The form of Ethos combined with the word “privilege” was strategically placed together to add relation to the author’s essay resulting in the opportunity to set up his Pathos for the

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