A Rhetorical Analysis Of Royal Dixon's Essay

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In this passage by Royal Dixon, the author incorporated various

persuasive techniques to build an extremely well-crafted essay, which

encourages the readers’ respect toward the animals. By emphasizing the

common aspects of the animals and the human, the author attempted to convey

his points that animals deserves more respect. His logic and persuasiveness

was strengthened through rhetorical question, criticism of the limitation of

science, and emphasis on the interconnection between humans and animals.

The author is mindfully persuasive from the very beginning starting off

his essay by rhetorical questions. His intentional manipulation of structure of

placing the rhetorical questions directly after the commonly held concept of “we

cannot treat men
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He claims that the science is imperfect due to its

defect of leaving out feelings. The author first discusses the descriptions of

human in the scientific approach that humans are “merely a machine to be

explained in terms of neurons and nervous impulses, heredity and

environments and reactions to outside stimuli”. Consequently, however, he

incorporated rhetorical question, “who is there who does not believe that there

is more to man that that?”, provoking the empathy that humans are indeed

much more valuable beings that such simplistic explanation. He attempts use

this created empathy and apply this concept to the animals as well. This

encouraged the readers to approach this matter not with the heads, but with

hearts, changing the perception of animals not as a mere inferior creature, but

as a being of intellect and feelings as humans. Although the author revealed his

unsatisfaction toward mechanistic interpretation, he approaches his argument in

a scientific way to counter his audience, who may still disagree with him based

on the scientific fact of superiority in intelligent of humans over the animals.
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