Monday, January 30, 2017

Human Rights Using Persuasion

The book defines rhetoric as having to do with the relationship between language and persuasion. In a typical social movement, the people involved are attempting to persuade and encourage bystanders to support the cause that they are bringing to the table. For example, this past week there were hundreds of Women's Marches throughout the entire world. In Washington DC, there were approximately 500,000 citizens standing up for what they believe in; 300,000 more than what was expected. At these marches, women and men of all ages stood up for their beliefs in an attempt to make an impression on the new President and the people standing underneath him.
These citizens paraded down streets holding signs that screamed the emotions they were feeling.

I am not a feminist, but I do believe in women's rights and equality. I also believe that the people involved in these marches were fairly successful when it comes to getting their message across to the new administration in the White House. Because of actions such as these, people often tip-toe around conversations topics such as gender equality or equal pay in order to not step on anyones toes or start any controversies. This is not what the goal is! These feminism supporters WANT others to talk about it. The more people talk and argue, the more changes there will be made and that is what they want to see. Not only is this march to ensure a more equal lifestyle for women, but it also supports members of the LGBT community in an effort to promote even higher levels of equality.

In order to get something that you want these days, you have to make a big scene to express your feelings.  This is how contemporary social movements use rhetoric rather than coercing individuals. They express their thoughts and feelings and get in your face about how strongly they feel about the specific topic.

Social media has played a huge part in this movement. After the Women's March, I continued to see post after post on every social media site about the march. I read many blogs and studied countless numbers of creative posters. If it wasn't for social media, this march wouldn't have been as successful and talked about as it was and is still.

According to the book, rhetoric is all about convincing someone to do something or convincing them to think a certain way. Like I previously stated, I am not a feminist and I'm completely content with that. But after obsessing over the creative poster designs and reading about a few feminist's arguments, I can say that I have been convinced that women are not as equal as men in some ways. This is a prime example of how rhetoric is really "an art of persuasion".


The Essential Guide to Rhetoric

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