Rhetorical Analysis Of Petrie's Purpose

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In the postscript, Petrie explains that he wanted to write an essay “that would expose… the dangers and hypocrisy” of the collegiate athletic system. The diction of that sentence alone uncovers Petrie’s purpose. The word “expose” implies that under the sugar coating of temporary fame and fortune, there is an ugly reality for college athletes. Since this is a persuasive essay, the purpose was gradually revealed. As Petrie stated in the postscript, he starts by establishing credibility with his experiences as a student and educator and presenting both sides of his argument to gain the respect of his audience. His “sharply split opinions” signaled to the audience that his essay could go either way. By starting off with his primary research, he gained the reader’s attention enough that he or she would continue reading, despite their own opinions on the topic.
His purpose for writing was driven by his numerous ordinary, but detrimental, experiences with college athletes as a student and as an educator. One sentence that reveals his purpose is, “It’s sad to see bright young athletes knowingly compromise their potential and settle for much less education than they deserve.” The last paragraph also shows Petrie’s purpose. He writes, “I can live with the thought of the athletes who knowingly use
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In the postscript, Petrie says that his thesis is implied throughout the essay, but he had two main points that he wants the reader to understand: one is that college athletes get special treatment and another is that the special treatment does not benefit the athlete’s academic career. His thesis also relates back to his purpose of exposing the hypocrisy of the system. The anecdote about John implies the thesis that the athletic system affects students negatively because it shows how the special treatment John got by just passing his hodgepodge of courses lead him to his struggle to get an education, to get a job, and support his
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