Analyzing the Rhetorical Situation

The following questions are often referred to as "journalistic questions" because they help us identify key information.  

  • Who?
  • What?
  • When?
  • Where?
  • Why?
  • How?

These questions can also be useful in establishing the characteristics of a rhetorical situation.  


Follow the steps below to analyze one of our readings from this week using these questions: 

  1. Consider one of our readings from this week and ask the journalistic questions listed about that reading.
  2. Watch this short video on the Burkean Parlor metaphor at this link.
  3. In a discussion post of 150-200 words, answer the following questions: 
    1. How does this strategy help you learn more about the rhetorical situation of the text in question?
    2. Based on what you know about the rhetorical situation, how might you respond to the author of the text with some of your own ideas? Think of this as “dipping in your oar,” as Kenneth Burke describes in his parlor metaphor.  
  4. After composing and sharing your discussion post, respond to at least one peer. In your response, discuss to what extent your peer’s analysis is effective and include suggestions for analyzing the rhetorical situation. Your response should be at least 100 words.  


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