Rhetorical Analysis Of Serving In Florida By Barbara Ehrenreich

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One of the best-selling authors, Barbara Ehrenreich, in her narrative essay, “Serving in Florida,” describes her personal experience working in a local restaurant called Jerry’s. Ehrenreich’s purpose is to attach importance to the low-wage America workplace. Using rhetorical strategies such as negative diction, simile, images, and pathos, Ehrenreich attempts to raise public awareness of the low-wage workers’ life in her readers. Firstly, Barbara Ehrenreich exploits connotation of words and simile to emphasize the difficult life of the lower class. The author seems to write about the wonderful life of the workers since they chat cheerfully, and build up a tiny support group; however, words like “raucous,” “overwhelmed,” and “conceal” reveal …show more content…

The author describes an image about the kitchen and the rest room. The author describes the kitchen with following quotes, “The kitchen is a cavern,” “The floor is slick with spills,” and “Sinks everywhere are clogged with scraps of lettuce, decomposing lemon wedges, water-logged toast crusts”. The effect of the imagery is to show the chaos of the kitchen, and to emphasize how bad the working environment is. Thus the audience can realize that how substandard and dirty the kitchen is, which beyonds audiences’ expectation due to the public impression that a kitchen should be the cleanest place due to its function of preparing and saving food. Later, the author continues to use imagery as describing the rest room. Ehrenreich mentions “The regulation poster in the single unisex rest room admonishes us to wash our hands thoroughly,” in her essay; However, there is almost no one following the instruction because “there is always some vital substance missing—soap, paper towels, toilet paper”. Although workers may want to follow the instructions, it is impossible for them to do so because they “never found all three at once ”. The effect of describing the deficient rest room is to highlight the fact that the owner of the restaurant is so stingy to the workers that the owner refuses to provide enough substance. Thus, the readers can better understand the terrible environment that the workers live in. In short, with mention the dreadful environment of the kitchen and the rest room, the audiences are able to know that lower workers work in a grubby environment and how they have been treated by the upper class. The description of the environment that workers work in is served to proceed the overall purpose that the public should pay more attention to the situation of lower class

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