Blog 3 – Bridget French

I have learned a lot since beginning this course. I now know that “rhetorical analysis refers to the effort to understand how communication (by a variety of means) create particular effects on people” (Nicotra 4). Prior to this class I had not heard of nor had any prior experience with the rhetorical analysis. What sticks with me most so far this year is what I have learned about the audience. I realize that for a large part of the media I consume, the communicator is directly targeting their viewers based on the audience they want to attract. I saw how drastically different the message takeaway for a report on Trump’s inauguration turnout was when coming from two different reporting networks. Fox News reports to a more right-wing audience, therefore choose to poke fun at the left-wing news coverage of the inauguration. The New York Times, a primarily left-wing publication chose to discuss their disagreement with Trump over the number of inauguration attendees. In looking at these comparisons I was able to gain an understanding as to how a communicator will tailor their message to best appeal to their audience. I really enjoyed learning about the rhetorical analysis pyramid, having the three points of the message, the audience, and the communicator gave me a clearer understanding as to how I should use rhetorical analysis. Approaching this first writing assignment I have used the New York Times and Fox News articles as examples of how to report the same event for different audiences. I am making sure to be thoughtful in my word choice and inclusion of information depending on the publication I am writing. I am also looking at the rhetorical analysis pyramid to make sure I am effectively using rhetorical analysis. This course taught me a lot about myself as a writer, I am now aware of the audience I am trying to reach when I write something. I feel I am more intentional about my word choice and solely providing points that relate to my message.