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Rhetoric

In: Social Issues

Submitted By onetwosrigo
Words 3937
Pages 16
Raksha Rao
Professor James Wynn
Rhetoric and Public Policy
2 April 2014
Rhetorical Analysis: Euthanasia

Particular Analysis There are three key audiences of the text for William F. May's “Rising to the Occasion of Our Death.” The first audience, in this case, would be legislative organizations or lawmakers who have researched and studied similar cases regarding euthanasia. Since May was as an ethics professor at Southern Methodist University, his tone is decidedly intellectual. An uneducated individual would find it more difficult to read his essay; for example, in declarations such as “Advocates of active euthanasia appeal to the principle of patient autonomy,” May's syntax and tone is formal, informative, and utilizes heavy technical jargon (May 662). In other words, it is authoritative, and enables the audience to view him as a credible source due to his syntactical confidence. Other organizations, lobbyists, or lawmakers who are researching evidence on euthanasia would certainly benefit from reading his expert opinion on the matter. Moreover, his desire to develop a “judicious, regulated policy” is a certain acknowledgement that he is attempting to legally call for regulations on euthanasia (May 662). The second audience that May is appealing to are conservative Christians, who are distinctively pro-life. As his article was originally published in well-circulated The Christian Century magazine, addressing this audience exposes members of May's audience who are unfamiliar with euthanasia to its technicalities by debating morality. His tone is similar to that of a sermon; instead of utilizing scientific facts or statistics, May chooses to exclude a logos appeal in favor of an ethos objective. He preaches on moral values about life and death, mentioning that “the best death is not always the sudden death” (May 662). According to May, preparation for...

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