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personal essays

essays that tell anecdotes with a larger theme that affects us all

literary essays

personal essays with a plot

exploratory essays

an overt explanation of a particular subject

rhetorical essays

essays with an easily recognized persuasive purpose

political essays

essays that attempt to alter the course of history by persuading people to take action

opinion essays

essays that attempt to change minds and attitudes


study of the technique and rules for using language effectively (especially in public speaking)

logical arguments

arguments that use logic to change something

deductive logical arguments

present general principles from which they draw a conclusion; "men are tall, bob is a man, therefore bob is tall"

inductive logical arguments

offer many examples and from these abstract a conclusion of general application; "kobe is tall, shaq is tall, therefore all men are tall"

major premise

statement that applies to all things within a particular category; "men"

minor premise

asserts something about a particular case; "bob is a man"


follows the premises logically; "bob is tall"


if the conclusion follows logically from the premises then the argument is valid

sound argument


truth test

do you agree with all the premises?

unsound argument

not thorough

false premise

an error in premise


breaking down an argument into parts


truth and validity


a rhetorical practice that leaves a premise out

sufficiently large sample

large group of people

accurate sample


representative sample

many different people or groups


writer's self presentation or moral standing

ethical arguments

tools like dress and posture that help us persuade


the emotional state of the audience

pathetic arguments

arguments that elicit emotions

honest emotion

powerful emotion that tempts us to suspend judgment and complements logic

dishonest emotion

asks us to substitute emotion for logic


a single case rendered in emotionally charged language

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