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How Boys Learn Rhetorical Analysis

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Patrick Holt English 802 Joshua Lukin Temple University 1/25/16 The debate about how to help young boys perform better in school is anything but simple. There are many different views and opinions on the matter. Some believe that it is very feminine environment that boys are introduced to in the classroom and making the classroom more appealing to boys is the best solution. This view is championed by the article How Boys Learn, written by Michael Gurian and Kathy Stevens. Others say that the idea of segregating boys and girls is part of the problem and that the best way to solve the problem is to stop looking at boys and girls as being so different and to look at them as individuals rather than as two groups. The view is represented…show more content…
However, there is a much heavier use of logos than either ethos or pathos. The majority of the article is made up of descriptions of various studies done on children and then an explanation is given as to how the findings help prove the points that Rivers and Barnett are trying to make. Phrases like, “Given the evidence” and “Remember the experiment” pop up all over the article (Rivers pg. 148). Rivers and Barnett don’t really try to appeal to the audience’s ethics or personal feelings. It feels like they just rely solely on the evidence cite to prove their point, which in this case, works fine. Their argument would probably be strengthened by a couple of appeals to the feelings of their target audience, but the vast amounts of evidence they’ve gathered makes it so that those appeals are not necessary. Normally, in a persuasive piece, it is good to have a good mix of the three methods in order to better sell the argument. In the case of The Truth about Girls and Boys, Rivers and Barnett provide enough scientific backing to their points so that the other two methods of persuasion aren’t as…show more content…
Something noteworthy about this article is that it provides a lot of evidence for its points but that evidence is not strongly backed up. Gurian and Stevens have a couple of sources listed at the end of the piece but that’s it. Also, there are no in-text citations to show where they got the information from. When Gurian and Stevens are making claims like, “Bonding chemistry and the visual cortex of boys and girls already differ at four days old”, it would help make their argument stronger if they would show where they got the evidence from in order to show the audience that it is either true or scientifically valid (Gurian pg. 88). Since Gurian and Stevens don’t point out what their source is, it’s hard to be sure that what they are saying is true or
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