Using Rhetorical Devices
Types of Speeches
• Political speeches:
– Focuses on an issue relating to
government or politics
• Address:
– A formal speech that is prepared for a
special occasion
• Sermon:
– A speech that is usually based on a
scriptural text and intended to provide
religious instruction.
Persuasive Techniques
• Persuasion:
–Speech or writing that tries to get the
audience to think or act a certain way.
• Persuasive Techniques:
–The methods that a speaker or a writer
uses to sway an audience.
Types of Persuasive Techniques
• Logical appeal (logos):
–Builds a well-reasoned argument based
on evidence such as facts, statistics, or
expert testimony.
• Ethical Appeal (ethos)
–Arguments are based on morals and
values of a culture that ask the
audience to do what is “right”
according to what the culture deems
–This appeal is linked to the audience’s
perception of the trustworthiness and
moral character of the speaker or
• Emotional Appeal (pathos)
• Attempts to arouse the audience’s
feelings, often by using loaded words
that convey strong connotations
• The argument strives to appeal to the
audience’s sense of fear, pity, needs,
desires and sympathies.
How Persuasive Techniques are used:
• Rhetorical Devices:
–Patterns of words and ideas that create
emphasis and stir the audience’s
Types of Rhetorical Devices
• Repetition:
–Restating an idea using the same
• Example: “The war is inevitable—
and let it come! I repeat it, sir, let it
come!” ~Patrick Henry
• Restatement:
–Expressing the same idea using
different words.
• Example: “…we cannot dedicate—we
cannot consecrate—we cannot
hallow—this ground.” ~Abraham
• Parallelism:
–Repeating a grammatical
• Example: “With malice toward
none; with charity for all…”
~Abraham Lincoln
• Antithesis:
–Using strongly contrasting words,
images, or ideas
• Example: “…ask not what your
country can do for you—ask what
you can do for your country.” ~John
F. Kennedy
• Rhetorical Questions:
–Asking questions for effect, not to
get answers
• Example: “From such an assembly
can a perfect production be
expected?” ~Benjamin Franklin
Identify persuasive techniques by:
• Ask yourself if the speaker or writer
relies primarily on logical, emotional,
ethical appeals or a combination of
these appeals.
– If logic, is it based on sound evidence?
– If emotional, is it manipulative as well as
– If ethical, examine the speaker’s authority
to comment and the value he/she states
or implies.
Identify Rhetorical Devices by:
• Look for the use of the specific words
or phrases as given (repetition,
restatement, parallelism, antithesis,
or rhetorical questions)
• Then, notice how these devices
affect the sound and meaning of the
speech or writing