210 Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics

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Table of contents

  • 1 What is a Rhetorical Analysis Essay?
  • 2 How to Choose a Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topic?
  • 3 Comparative Rhetorical Analysis Topics
  • 4 Rhetorical Analysis Ideas For High School Students
  • 5 Rhetorical Analysis Topics for College Students
  • 6 Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics on Education
  • 7 Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics on Literature
  • 8 Rhetorical Analysis Topics List on Speeches
  • 9 Visual Rhetorical Essay Topics
  • 10 Topics for a Rhetorical Analysis Essay on Society
  • 11 Topics for Rhetorical Analysis Essay on a Person
  • 12 Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics on Philosophy
  • 13 Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics on History
  • 14 Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics on Business
  • 15 Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics on Government
  • 16 Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics on Culture
  • 17 Conclusion

With any rhetorical analysis essay writing, effective communication is everything. If you’re a student or want to elevate your persuasive skills, learning how to engage your readers is the first step.

When it comes to selecting thought-provoking rhetorical analysis topics, where do you begin? This is where a wise companion in PapersOwl comes in handy. With this seasoned guide, you can easily navigate the complex world of rhetorical analysis. Until then, take a look at our extensive collection of topics that’ll get your creative juices flowing.

We have created a list of 210 essays that will inspire you to craft a powerful academic essay. These rhetorical analysis paper topics cater to all skill levels too.

What is a Rhetorical Analysis Essay?

This type of analysis essay identifies the rhetorical devices and strategies used by an author, all while highlighting how they have used words to sway their audience.

For example, a rhetorical paper looks at an influential political speech through purpose, key claims, and tone. In an essay, students cover by following a structured approach.

  • Introduction. Students present the text, author, and thesis statement. These outline the main argument or points of the analysis.
  • Main body paragraphs. These delve into specific strategies, appeals, and devices to support the analysis. Make your essay authentic by keeping it true to the facts.
  • Conclusion. The end wraps up the essay by summarizing the main points. It will also discuss the effectiveness of the persuasive techniques.

How to Choose a Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topic?

Finding the right topic comes down to writing about something you’re familiar with. This is because you’ll need to showcase insightful analysis to write a rhetorical analysis essay successfully. The best way to do this is to make sure the rhetorical topics you pick are something you’re interested in.

Tip 1. Start by identifying the rhetorical situation essay topics that interest you. This will make background research and thematic analysis that much more enjoyable. Then ask yourself:

  • What subjects or themes are intriguing for you to rhetorically analyze?
  • Are there specific rhetorical analysis example topics in your field of study that you excel in or are passionate about?
  • Have you studied similar subjects or texts in the past that might help your rhetorical analysis assignment ideas come to life?

Tip 2. Choose from rhetorical analysis ideas that match your interests and expertise. Select rhetoric research paper topics relevant to your course or subject area. And make sure there is enough information to write a defined argument. It needs to be complex enough to allow a thorough literary analysis of the themes and the most valuable rhetorical strategies.

Tip 3. Make sure the rhetorical analysis paper topic is suitable. It will need to meet the expectations of rhetorical analysis topics. This means highlighting the importance symbolism plays in the author’s message.

  • Is there enough emotional depth and background research for you to work with?
  • Can you cover the rhetorical situation within the word limit?
  • Is it interesting enough to engage your reader?

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Comparative Rhetorical Analysis Topics

Here, you’ll rhetorically analyze two texts by similarities, differences, and effectiveness. Sometimes, though, a critical eye is needed. This is when students seek a reputable analytical essay writing service like PapersOwl for help. Here you’ll find expert advice on the most effective academic writing so that you can study with peace of mind.

  • The Persuasive Techniques Used By Martin Luther King Jr. And Malcolm X In Their Speeches.
  • Does Innovation Outweigh Invention?
  • Washington Vs. Lincoln.
  • What Is Better For The Economy: Traditional Postal Service Or Email?
  • The Persuasive Techniques Of Apple And Samsung In Advertisements.
  • The Persuasive Devices Of President Biden’s Speech Vs. President Obama’s Speech.
  • Classical Conditioning Or Operant Conditioning. Which Is More Practical?
  • The Art Of The Greeks And The Romans.
  • What Drives Business Growth In 2023. E-Commerce Or Traditional?
  • Education Or Life Without It?
  • The Use Of Persuasion In Barack Obama’s And Donald Trump’s Presidential Speeches.
  • Command Economy Or The Free Market.
  • Philosophy Vs. Religion.
  • Ethos, Pathos, And Logos In Op-Ed Articles By Conservative And Liberal Columnists.
  • Persuasive Techniques Used In Public Service Announcements On Smoking And Drug Abuse.

Rhetorical Analysis Ideas For High School Students

These easy rhetorical analysis topics encourage students to examine all forms of communication. A rhetorical analysis essay requires looking at written texts, acceptance speeches, or visuals.

It will also help you develop critical thinking skills by understanding how language is used to achieve a particular goal.

  • A Rhetorical Analysis On The Meaning Of Mona Lisa’s Smile.
  • How William Shakespeare Became Known As The Greatest Writer In The World.
  • The Final Speech Of Martin Luther King Jr.
  • The Reasons For WW2.
  • Novels And Movies About “Frankenstein”: Similarities And Differences.
  • The Impact Of Electronic Media On Culture.
  • Why Do Films And TV Fail to Capture The Full Essence Of The Books They Are Based On?
  • Heroism As Defined By J. K. Rowling And J. R. R. Tolkien.
  • A Detailed Analysis Of TV And Online Advertisement.
  • The Power Of Social Media: A Rhetoric Paper
  • How Sherlock Holmes Is Perceived On TV And Why Not Everyone Likes Him.
  • Why Do People Write Fan Fiction?
  • My School Principal’s Speech.
  • William Shakespeare’s “Romeo And Juliet”: An Analysis.
  • Why Are Dogs Known As “Man’s Best Friend”?

Rhetorical Analysis Topics for College Students

These detailed rhetorical analysis topics cover complex primary themes and issues. Through rhetorical analysis, college students learn how language sends a message.

You’ll also improve your own persuasive writing skills by looking at the different types of rhetorical analysis.

  • The Use Of Parallelism, Repetition, And Allusion In Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have A Dream” Speech.
  • Do Women Or Men React Better To Media Advertisement Messages?
  • How Does Online Content Manipulate Persuasive Devices?
  • What Effect Does Music Have On Film And TV?
  • The Persuasive Devices Of The American National Anthem.
  • Symbolism In Maya Angelou’s “I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings”.
  • How Syrian Politics Sparked War.
  • The Persuasive Techniques Used In A Popular Advertisement Or Commercial.
  • Why Are Ted Talks So Popular?
  • How Does An Influential Newspaper Editorial Manipulate Rhetoric Devices To Benefit Its Argument?
  • My Favorite Poem By William Shakespeare.
  • The Impact Of A Popular Social Media Influencer’s Posts Or Videos.
  • Rhetorical Devices In Famous Song Lyrics
  • The Use Of Metaphor In A Speech From Your School Director On Graduation Day.
  • The Effectiveness Of Rhetoric Devices In A Well-Known Op-Ed Or Opinion Piece.

Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics on Education

An essay topic on education looks at different forms of communication. You’ll analyze the author’s purpose, as well as their emotional appeal.

All while understanding the nuances of educational discussions and elevating your analytical skills.

  • Education System And Educational Technologies .
  • Importance Of Time Management Skills .
  • Integration Of America’s Public Schools .
  • Standardized Testing In Measuring Students’ Academic Performance.
  • A Detailed Analysis Essay On The “No Child Left Behind” Policy.
  • The Persuasive Techniques Used In Debates Surrounding Homeschooling Versus Traditional Schooling.
  • An Analysis Essay On The Proponents And Opponents Of School Vouchers.
  • The Language And Persuasive Strategies Used In Promoting Stem Education In Schools.
  • An Analysis Essay On Inclusive Education And Its Impact On Special Needs.
  • The Arguments For And Against Implementing Technology In The Classroom.
  • The Role Of Standardized Curricula In Fostering Critical Thinking And Creativity In Students.
  • Promoting Social-Emotional Learning In Schools.
  • The Role Of Teachers’ Unions In Shaping Educational Policies And Outcomes.
  • Examining Peer Research Papers On The Arguments For And Against Implementing School Uniforms.
  • How Policymakers Use Rhetorical Devices To Debate How Teachers’ Unions Shape Education.

Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics on Literature

Authors, poets, and playwrights use a variety of forms of communication in their literary works. Through them, you’ll learn how authors create meaningful literary pieces and gain an appreciation of novels rhetorical strategies.

  • Symbolism And Literary Devices In “The Lord Of The Rings” Trilogy.
  • The Significance Of Stream-Of-Consciousness Narrative Style In Virginia Woolf’s “Mrs. Dalloway”.
  • The Literary Texts Of William Shakespeare.
  • Examine The Use Of Rhetorical Devices In A Famous Poem, Such As Maya Angelou’s “Still I Rise”.
  • What Does Solitude Symbolize In 21st-Century Literary Texts Compared To The 20th Century?
  • Analyzing The Persuasive Strategies Used By Simone De Beauvoir In “The Second Sex”.
  • A Detailed Analysis Essay On The Primary Themes Present In Shakespeare’s “Hamlet”.
  • Different Rhetorical Devices In “The Bible”.
  • The Rhetoric Devices And Symbolism Of Stephen King.
  • The Power Of Symbolism And Metaphor In F. Scott Fitzgerald’s “The Great Gatsby”.
  • The Literary Devices Of “Pride And Prejudice” And How They’re Still Relevant Today.
  • Gender And Power In Jane Austen’s “Pride And Prejudice”.
  • Romanticism In William Wordsworth’s Poem “Tintern Abbey”.
  • How Harper Lee’s “To Kill A Mockingbird” Confronts Issues Of Racial Injustice
  • The Influence Of Gothic Elements In Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Tell-Tale Heart” And “The Fall Of The House Of Usher”.

Rhetorical Analysis Topics List on Speeches

The speech topics for an analysis essay focus on analyzing the elements of a speech. You’ll go deep into the speaker’s choice of words, tone, delivery style, use of rhetorical devices, and the structure of the speech.

By evaluating these components, a detailed rhetorical analysis reveals the speaker’s underlying strategies. Then you can explain how the techniques engage, persuade, and inspire their target audience.

  • Rhetorical Analysis Of Barack Obama’s Victory Speech .
  • A Rhetorical Analysis Essay On Speeches By Greta Thunberg And David Attenborough.
  • The 1588 Speech By Queen Elizabeth on The Spanish Armada.
  • A Rhetorical Analysis Essay On Susan B. Anthony’s “On Women’s Right To Vote” Speech.
  • Commencement Speeches By Influential Figures Like Steve Jobs And Oprah Winfrey.
  • The Role Of Emotional Appeal In Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address.
  • A Rhetorical Analysis Essay On Winston Churchill In His “We Shall Fight On The Beaches” Speech.
  • An Examination Of Logos In John F. Kennedy’s Inaugural Address.
  • The Persuasive Power Of Repetition In The Famous “Yes We Can” Speech By Barack Obama.
  • How Rhetorical Devices Vary In Nelson Mandela’s “Long Walk To Freedom” Speech.
  • The Effectiveness Of Analogy And Anecdote In Steve Jobs’ Stanford Commencement Address.
  • The Impact Of Tone And Pacing In George Washington’s Resignation Speech.
  • The Use Of Persuasive Strategies In Malcolm X’s “The Ballot Or The Bullet” Speech
  • The Effect Of Formal Or Informal Language In Speech Delivery.
  • The Impact Of Persuasive Techniques In Greta Thunberg’s “How Dare You” Speech At The United Nations Climate Action Summit.

Visual Rhetorical Essay Topics

Visual essays explore how the things we see persuade a target audience and evoke emotional responses. The things you’ll look at with visual analysis essay writing include color, layout, and concrete or abstract images. By doing so, you’ll learn how visual communication impacts our media-rich society.

  • A Rhetorical Analysis Essay On The Use Of Color Symbolism In Political Campaign Posters.
  • The Impact Of Visual Metaphors In Advertising On Consumer Behavior.
  • The Role Of Typography And Font Choice In Conveying A Message In Graphic Design.
  • Examining The Use Of Pathos In Public Service Announcements Related To Climate Change.
  • The Persuasive Power Of Visual Storytelling In Documentary Films.
  • How Social Media Platforms Use Visuals To Shape User Behaviors And Opinions.
  • The Influence Of Iconic Photographs On Public Perception Of Historical Events.
  • A Visual Rhetorical Analysis Essay On Memes And Their Role In Shaping Online Discourse.
  • Developing A Brand Identity Through Visual Symbols And Logos.
  • The Role Of Visual Composition In Enhancing The Persuasiveness Of Infographics.
  • A Rhetorical Analysis Essay On The Impact Of Editorial Cartoons On Shaping Public Opinion.
  • How Visual Metaphors In Music Videos Influence Viewers’ Interpretations Of The Song.
  • The Visual Rhetorical Analysis Essay On Visual Arts In The Streets.
  • How Visual Rhetorical Composition Is Used In Propaganda Posters To Evoke Nationalistic Emotions.
  • Visual Aesthetics in Aligning Branding With A Target Audience.

Topics for a Rhetorical Analysis Essay on Society

A rhetorical essay on society examines how language influences or critiques societal concerns. Through all types of media, you learn how certain strategies persuade or inform an audience about social issues.

  • Unconscious Racism And How It Affects People Of Color .
  • Racism And Shootings .
  • Why The Color Of Your Skin Does Not Matter .
  • The Biggest Problem In The United States Of America Is Illegal Immigrants .
  • The Problem Of Mass Shootings
  • Gun Violence .
  • The Role Of Persuasion In Environmental Activism And Climate Change Debates.’
  • A Rhetorical Analysis Paper On The Persuasive Techniques In Advertisements Targeting Societal Issues.
  • The Influence Of Celebrity Endorsements On Public Opinion And Social Issues.
  • The Language And Symbols Used In Anti-Bullying Campaigns.
  • A Rhetorical Analysis Paper On The LGBTQ+ Community.
  • Public Health Campaigns Addressing Mental Health Stigma.
  • A Detailed Rhetorical Analysis Essay On The Discourse Surrounding The Legalization Of Marijuana.
  • The Power Of Language In Promoting Or Challenging Racial Stereotypes.
  • The Influence Of Rhetorical Devices In Attitudes Toward Wealth Inequality And Social Mobility.

Topics for Rhetorical Analysis Essay on a Person

An outstanding rhetorical analysis paper looks at persuasive strategies to understand the writer’s intention. These essays examine how someone uses language to shape public opinion or inspire change.

  • Nikola Tesla – The Inventor Behind It All .
  • Changes By Tupac .
  • President Donald Trump And His Politics .
  • About Fidel Castro .
  • How Steve Jobs Used Persuasive Strategies To Reinvent Apple And Inspire Consumer Loyalty.
  • The Distinct Rhetoric Of Greta Thunberg In Her Climate Change Activism.
  • Analyzing The Persuasive Techniques Of Elon Musk’s Public Presentations And Interviews.
  • The Rhetorical Analysis Essay On Susan B. Anthony’s Fight For Women’s Suffrage.
  • Do Abstract Images Matter? What Does Boo Radley Represent In “To Kill A Mockingbird”?
  • The Rhetorical Composition Of Malala Yousafzai In Her Advocacy For Girls’ Education.
  • Nelson Mandela’s Fight Against Apartheid.
  • Dissecting The Persuasive Strategies Of Adolf Hitler In His Propaganda Campaigns.
  • The Persuasive Techniques Employed By Mahatma Gandhi In His Fight For Indian Independence.
  • How Winston Churchill Inspired A Nation During World War 2.
  • Maya Angelou In Her Poems And Speeches: A Rhetorical Analysis Essay.

Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics on Philosophy

Philosophers use persuasive techniques, arguments, and linguistic choices in their rhetorical analysis essays to convey their ideas. It will be your job to define their impact by looking at how they engage and convince their readers.

You’ll learn how philosophical concepts are presented and articulated, and you’ll develop your analytical abilities.

  • The Calvinistic Doctrine Of Predestination .
  • The Use Of Persuasive Devices In Plato’s “Allegory Of The Cave”.
  • A Rhetorical Analysis Essay On Descartes’ “Cogito, Ergo Sum” Argument.
  • Persuasive Techniques Used By Immanuel Kant In His “Critique Of Pure Reason”.
  • A Linguistic Examination Of John Locke’s “A Rhetorical Essay Concerning Human Understanding”.
  • The Role Of Ethos, Logos, And Pathos In Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s “The Social Contract”.
  • The Persuasive Strategies Of Friedrich Nietzsche In “Thus Spoke Zarathustra”.
  • Analysis Of The Socratic Method In “Dialogues” By Plato.
  • Persuasive Language In John Stuart Mill’s “On Liberty”.
  • Rhetorical Devices In “Leviathan” By Thomas Hobbes.
  • Metaphor And Symbolism In Søren Kierkegaard’s “Fear And Trembling”.
  • Linguistic Examination Of Martin Heidegger’s “Being And Time”.
  • The Persuasive Power Of Bertrand Russell’s “Why I Am Not A Christian”.
  • Analyze Main Rhetorical Devices In Ludwig Wittgenstein’s “Philosophical Investigations”.
  • A Rhetorical Analysis Essay On The Language Of Metaphysics In George Berkeley’s “A Treatise Concerning The Principles Of Human Knowledge”.

Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics on History

History essays examine and check historical speeches, texts, and events through the lens of expression.

These rhetorical analysis topics will have you studying the words of influential figures throughout history. And how their messages shaped public opinion through the power of language and persuasion.

  • The Civil War .
  • A Rhetorical Analysis Essay On The “Zimmermann Telegram” And Its Impact On World War I
  • The Debates Surrounding The U.S. Constitution.
  • American Revolution And The Declaration Of Independence.
  • Persuasive Techniques In The Abolitionist Movement
  • The Persuasive Power Of Queen Elizabeth I’s Speech To The Troops At Tilbury.
  • Thomas Paine’s “Common Sense” Pamphlet.
  • The Speeches Of Marcus Tullius Cicero And Their Impact On Roman Society.
  • Emancipation Proclamation. Analyzing Abraham Lincoln’s Use Of Diction.
  • Techniques Employed In The Women’s Suffrage Movement.
  • The Use Of Persuasive Expression In The Civil Rights Movement.
  • Wartime Propaganda Posters.
  • European Union Formation Through Written And Spoken Persuasive Techniques.
  • The Cuban Missile Crisis.
  • 1979 Iranian Revolution.

Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics on Business

The business rhetorical analysis examines how communication achieves specific goals. These rhetoric topics look at how marketing campaigns or business proposals affect society.

  • Disney Is Destroying Lives
  • Completely Legal For Walmart To Hire Many Part Time Workers
  • Brexit Bad For Business Ain’t It
  • Insights Into The Power Of Storytelling In Business Presentations.
  • Campaigns Promoting Corporate Social Responsibility Have Great Power
  • Rhetorical Strategies Used In Customer Testimonials And Reviews To Persuade Potential Clients.
  • The Persuasive Techniques Used By Businesses To Promote Environmentally-Friendly Practices.
  • How Spoken And Written Techniques Reinforce Or Challenge Traditional Gender Roles In The Workplace.
  • A Rhetorical Analysis Essay On How Businesses Respond To Public Relations Disasters.
  • Exploring The Language That Conveys Corporate Values And Mission Statements.
  • The Impact Of Social Media Influencers On Business Promotion.
  • The Persuasive Techniques Used In “Shark Tank” Pitches And Startup Competitions.
  • Exploring The Strategies Used By Businesses To Regain Trust After Controversies Or Scandals.
  • From Commercials To Viral Ad Campaigns: How Advertising Works In 2023.
  • How Companies Persuade Other Organizations To Collaborate Or Form Partnerships.

Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics on Government

These rhetorical analysis topics cover political speeches to propaganda in policy documents.

You’ll learn how language and tone rally support for specific initiatives. As well as develop a deeper appreciation for this topic’s influence on political discourse.

  • What Does Change Mean In Us History?
  • United States Key Role In Support Of Human Rights .
  • Essay About Brown V. Board Of Education .
  • Police Brutality And Abuse Towards Blacks .
  • The Language And Communication Strategies Used In International Diplomacy.
  • A Rhetorical Analysis Essay On Political Party Platforms And How They Attract Voters.
  • Shaping Public Opinion On Controversial Legislation.
  • A Global Village Rhetorical Analysis Essay On The Success Or Failure Of Social Movements.
  • A Rhetoric Analysis Of The Impact Of Language In The Framing Of National Security Issues.
  • The Role Of Persuasion In The Portrayal Of Political Figures In The Media.
  • Examining The Language And Communication Strategies Used In Political Crisis Management.
  • Shaping Public Discourse On Controversial Topics Through Rhetorical Analysis.
  • Promoting Specific Government Policies Through Written And Spoken Strategy.
  • The Rhetorical Richness Of Visual Arts In Media.
  • The Use Of Emotional Appeals In Government Public Service Announcements.

Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics on Culture

Culture-specific rhetorical strategies contribute to the unique characteristics of different societies. And studying them encourages the development of critical thinking and analytical skills.

Through language, you will learn how cultural norms, values, and traditions are conveyed and reinforced.

  • Women And Men Pay Gap
  • Thinking Queerly: Race, Sex, Gender
  • Abortion Illegal
  • The Society Acceptance Of LGBT
  • A Rhetorical Analysis Essay On The Relationship Between Popular Culture And Consumer Behavior.
  • Cultural Festivals And Their Impact On Societal Values.
  • The Influence Of Social Media On The Evolution Of Cultural Trends.
  • Persuasive Language In Cultural Documentaries.
  • Literary Persuasion In The Promotion And Preservation Of Cultural Heritage.
  • Popular Art Criticism.
  • Cultural Stereotypes: Perceptions and Acceptances.
  • Language And Communication Strategies Used In Cultural Diplomacy.
  • Mainstream Media’s Representation Of Minority Cultures.
  • Language And Symbolism In Traditional Cultural Rituals.
  • Cultural And Artistic Movements Throughout History

Rhetorical analysis is a fascinating way to explore the power of language and persuasion. Understanding methods used to persuade and improve analytical skills is essential for students.

Luckily, there are 210 essay topics to select from here, so there is no shortage of good rhetorical analysis topics to explore.

From the speeches of world leaders to advertisements, you’ll develop a deeper appreciation for the art of persuasion. Furthermore, you learn how to use rhetorical devices to captivate audiences by analyzing popular media.

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200 rhetorical analysis topics for students in 2023.

rhetorical analysis topics

The first thing to note when writing anything on rhetorical analysis is that the essay requires you having a wide and in-depth knowledge about the specific topic you’ll be basing your essay on. A good mastery of rhetorical essay topics entails the ability to write effectively.

Sometimes, the challenge looks like not knowing where to begin. But, understanding that a rhetorical analysis essay requires the writer to deeply and accurately analyze a piece of work and make a plausible argument with supporting evidence about it will give you an edge when crafting and choosing a topic.

However, rhetorical analysis topics are majorly predominant in topics associated with the arts but are also not limited to it. Topics can be based on literature, movies, billboards, popular culture, ads, speeches, and even ordinary human conversations.

Aside from understanding what rhetorical topics are, having ample information about any selected topic is crucial as it helps to develop sound rhetorical analysis ideas. Here are some topics you can base your rhetorical analysis essay topics on.

Rhetorical Essay Topics to Choose From

In any rhetorical essay, what the writer does is highlight a problem, carry out extensive analysis on the listed problem to make a strong-base argument on the subject matter.

A rhetorical essay isn’t complete without sound backup evidence to the highlighted problem. Carrying out an essay writing of this form requires you to have done thorough research on whatever you will be writing on.

Knowing how to choose smart topics for rhetorical analysis isn’t enough to write the essay, there must be the existence of extensively done research as this enables the writing to come fully alive. Rhetorical analysis topics list can look like.

  • Do social media encourage low productivity in young adults?
  • Rhetorical Analysis of Shonda Rhimes’s How to Get Away with Murder
  • Obama’s first presidential speech
  • A textual analysis of Hanya Yanagihara’s A Little Life
  • Analysis of Dove ’s beauty Ads over the last 5 years
  • A Feminist look at Virginia Woolf’s A Room of One’s Own
  • Importance of complex themes in American TV shows and Movies
  • Analysis of the Instagram aesthetics and what it entails
  • The role of symbolism in Literature and art piece
  • The work of representation in Popular Culture
  • TV shows: That’s what I Like and Here’s Why you should too
  • The implication of Horror movies on middle and preschoolers
  • Do Smartphones encourage low productivity in Young Adults or not?
  • The impact of Diversity representation in Hollywood
  • A cultural exploration of Beyoncé’s Lemonade
  • Madam CJ Walker, Diversity beauty-representation
  • Explicit sexual exploration: the Hip Hop culture
  • Purity culture an offspring of Rape culture
  • Social exploration of the movie adaptation of Les Misérables
  • Does Social media obscure reality or not?
  • Rhetorical analysis: Mom blogs and the role they play within the society
  • The Hidden Reality of Foodbanks in the American system
  • Welfare mom, bad mom?
  • Analyze the political implications of George Orwell’s Animal Farm
  • The unsettling effect of Dan Fogelman’s This Life
  • Homeschooling, the bane of many high school students.
  • The impacts of gaming on preschoolers
  • How PBS for Kids has changed the Parenting game
  • The Role of the Erotica: The poems by E. E Cummings
  • The absurdity of the Afterlife

More Topics on Rhetorical Analysis

There are varieties of different kinds of rhetorical analysis topics that it is unlikely that one can run out of ways to craft rhetorical analysis topics for any essay at all.

Since the majority of these rhetoric topics are mostly within the arts, there’s a wide range of sources and inspiration to draw your essay topic from. This is because art is an interesting field that keeps on giving.

These topics can be relevant for high school and for college students. Here are a handful of rhetorical analysis example topics to consider for rhetorical analysis.

  • A comparative analysis of non-fictional novels and fictional novels
  • Analysis: Obama’s Farewell speech
  • Rhetorical analysis of Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre
  • The Failure of Charity, Classism, Victorian era, the folly of Individualism: Charles Dickens’s Oliver Twist .
  • Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness and Joyce Cary’s Mister Johnson : an Anthropological exploration
  • The realism of 11th century Scotland and how it’s portrayed in William Shakespeare’s Macbeth
  • The Surrealism of the 20th-century art and Literary explorations with that era
  • F.Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby and how it’s an indictment to the “American Dream”
  • Rhetorical Analysis of James Baldwin’s Giovanni’s Room and Another Country
  • Why Movie adaptations can never measure up to Books
  • The social and economic implications of Arthur Miller’s Death of a Salesman
  • The story of Leonardo da Vinci and the Monalisa painting
  • Painting, Artistry and how Paul Cézanne’s art interrogates the subject of late-blooming
  • What the use of mostly women for domestic Ads suggests
  • How new Hollywood producers and showrunners address the issue of inclusivity and diversity in TV.
  • What the use of the omniscient narrator in books suggests
  • The Monalisa painting: Why is it Talked about so much?
  • The rhetorical device in D.H Lawrence’s Lady Chatterley’s Lover
  • This is why best-seller books are called best-sellers
  • Why kids avoid watching the news at all cost
  • How the presence of social media impacts mental illness negatively
  • The Role of Tv and Popular in promoting Misogyny and Misogynoir
  • A call to Love: the recurring theme within James Baldwin’s works
  • How reality Tv shows obscure actual reality
  • How racism permeates Langston Hughes I, Too
  • What is the distinction between Symbolism and Imagery
  • The recurring effect of Misogyny in Malala Yousafzai’s real-life experiences
  • Why documentaries on Minimalism should be encouraged
  • Minimalism: a direct response to Late Capitalism
  • The wide distinction between Liberalism and NeoLiberalism

Rhetorical Situation Essay Topics for 2023

Before embarking on choosing any essay topic in a rhetorical situation, you must first understand the role of rhetoric in writing. Good rhetorical analysis essay topics aim to compel action through oral, written, visual, and sound forms. Rhetorical analysis compels the reader or the present audience to reassess their perspectives based on what you are saying or have written.

A good rhetorical analysis essay topic primarily seeks to capture the base attention of the reader or audience. One of the most common situations where rhetorics come in handy is in the political field.

However, rhetorical situation essays are impassioned, affective and are intended to capture the emotion of the reader or the audience; luring emotion is its basic and most tactical style for a call to action.

  • How the legislation on Birth Control pills has resulted in the untimely death of Women in rural areas
  • The rise of inflation and its resulting consequences in low-income homes
  • Was capitalism not okay enough? How the pandemic has displaced even more households
  • How does Popular Culture contribute to the continuous subjugation of women
  • Rape, teen pregnancy and the delegitimization of birth control pills: How they all conjure to control women’s bodies
  • Television is helping us understand the complexities of human lives
  • How the epidemic of drug abuse and its prevalence affects the lives of young Americans in the Deep South
  • Gun Control: Why we should pay attention to guns rather than women’s bodies
  • How lack of access and poverty is affecting homeschooling for young Americans
  • Paying low-income workers below minimum wage is a late capitalist concept
  • Gentrification: how it’s displacing people from their communities and homes
  • Capitalism is the main reason why millennials can’t afford to buy a house
  • The capitalist undertones of the “black to office” maximum
  • The Vernacular of Fatphobia in American Popular Culture
  • This is why America isn’t Post-racial
  • Myth: The Post-racial American Society
  • Why the rhetoric “The Future of Remote Work is Lonely” is a Myth
  • The Fatphobia of the American Wellness Culture
  • How Homeschooling is Demoralizing Teachers
  • Navigating various identities: the reality of the immigrant household
  • The Big lessons from Covid era: the diminishing returns of Hyper-productivity
  • What it means to be displaced within a Pandemic
  • Rhetorical Analysis of the Work Culture
  • The Unrealized myth of Self-care culture
  • The US Women as Social safety nets
  • Analysis of how Email became Work
  • What the Pandemic has taught workers about Unionism
  • The insidious nature of work culture and how it contributes to Burnouts
  • How Publishing is promoting Diversity and Inclusivity
  • Want it means to live within a pandemic as a low-income worker

30 Rhetorical Analysis Example Topics

The challenge that students often face when asked to write a rhetorical essay is the problem of how to craft a topic that best conveys their thoughts as well as that which they can grasp easily and have adequate available and accessible information on.

There are so many researchable ideas to write on; the hitch is often crafting your topic into something capable of inciting attention and encouraging conversations.

This is because, in rhetorics and persuasive writing, the rhetorical analysis topics for essay are also of crucial importance as much as the content. Here are some easy rhetorical analysis topics.

  • Why is Disneyland referred to as the Happiest Place on the Planet Earth
  • Why free Sanitary items is essential in every public space
  • The impact of Hip Hop in growing the Feminist Consciousness
  • Ted Talk: How it gives and encourages voices
  • Why Some blogs become Influential within a short period
  • The Myth of Consistency is Key
  • How Access is Key
  • How Shame culture emerged from Respectability Culture
  • Calling Survivors of Abuse Victims is Derogatory
  • How Speaking up exposes Survivors to more Harm
  • Analysis of Cancel Culture and Social Media Justice
  • The Importance of Commercials on Tv
  • How Commercials promote Falsehood
  • The impacts of Colorism and the Issue of Color Complex
  • A Room of One’s Own : The coming of Virginia Woolf before her time
  • A Rhetorical Analysis of Reality Tv
  • This is how Commercials can be more Relatable
  • How Relatability Tv impacts us
  • The importance of Inclusivity, Diversity, and Representation in Popular Culture
  • The Therapeutic effect of Representation
  • The Therapeutic effect of Yoga and Meditation
  • Why Low-income Workers should be exempted from Tax
  • The Ripple Effect of the Internet on Young Adults
  • Where the realistic depiction of Tv begins and ends
  • An Existential analytical approach to the works of Sylvia Path
  • The Rhetorical strategy in Frederick Douglas’ Memoir
  • Rhetoric as style in Martin Luther King Jr.’s I Have a Dream
  • Why the Bob Dylan Nobel Prize for Literature in 2016 was deserving
  • Award Culture is slowly Killing Creativity
  • A Historical approach to Geoffrey Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales

Ideas on Rhetoric Research Paper Topics

Every writing within academia hinges on the effective use of rhetorical situation essay topics; this is because the basis of everything done within academia is to impact ideas through the use of language and this language is usually persuasive in nature even while it seeks to educate.

For university students, it’s most likely very rare that you can run away from rhetoric research paper topics during your school year, in fact, it’s a prerequisite while in school.

It comes in the form of assignments, research, and term papers. If you are looking for topics, there are a variety of good topics to write a rhetorical analysis on. Below is a list of rhetorical analysis assignment ideas.

  • An Analysis of the Rhetorical Device implored in Beowulf
  • A Case study of Contemporary Popular Culture
  • The political and social implications of 90’s Hip Hop
  • A Comparative Analysis of Tv shows and Movies
  • The Futility of the American Dream as explored in F.S Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby
  • The Symbolic exploration of “The Green Light” in The Great Gatsby
  • The Impact of Technological Innovation on American Student’s attention span
  • The Misogyny of the American Entertainment Industry
  • Structural Racism: The Mother of Gentrification
  • The Growing Concern of the Broken American Childcare System
  • The Triumph and the Bold Rhetorics employed in Diversity Tv
  • Restructuring: Why Diversity, Inclusivity, and Representation should be Championed
  • Purity Culture: A social construct that seeks to control women’s body
  • The representation distinction in the movie adaptation of Push and the book
  • A Comparative Analysis of Digital Literature and Traditional Literature
  • Innovation: The growing effects of Technological advancement
  • Late Capitalism: Self-care culture as a tool
  • The need for Inclusivity in the discussion of Beauty Culture
  • American Gun Culture and how it perpetuates greater harm
  • Domestic Violence, Abuse: The Battered Woman Syndrome
  • Affirmative Action: A Tool for Subjugation and Intellectual Relegation of the Minority Communities
  • Race Relations: The future of the American System
  • The Intrinsic effect of the exploration and promotion of interracial marriage on American popular Culture
  • Obesity: The distinction between Fatphobia and a need for Medical Attention
  • The Evolution of Identity Politics within the American System
  • Diversity Higher: Why America Needs a quick Racial intervention
  • A Comparative Study of 90s Hip Hop Culture and early 2010s Hip Hop
  • Rape Culture, Victim Blaming: The need to listen to Survivors
  • The Explicit Way American Hip Hop Explores Abuse and Misogyny
  • The Institutional Bias of the American System

Rhetorical Argument Essay Topics

When writing an argumentative essay, rhetoric is employed as the tool to not just convey thoughts and opinions but also to capture the interest of the audience or reader(s).

In any rhetorical argument essay, the writer must employ ethos, pathos, and logos as this enables the writer to navigate the topic better. For every form of rhetorical argumentative essay, there has to be a thoroughly carried out research, an understanding of the audience, a solid thesis statement, and the use of a writing style that captures attention.

The basis of an argumentative essay is that it must contain persuasive elements, without that, the argument isn’t complete. Here are some rhetorical argument essay topics to look into while writing your essay.

  • Can Drug Abuse be Contained by Legalizing and Regulating certain Drugs?
  • High-end and Fast fashion, how does it contribute to the Unhealthy lifestyle in our environment
  • Does a Democratic system have any significant drawbacks?
  • Why working moms and nursing moms should be given more workplace privilege
  • Why Maternal paid leave should be legalized
  • Is Cyberbullying capable of affecting mental health?
  • Should Diversity Higher, Affirmative Action and Inclusivity be made mandatory?
  • Does Feminism obscure the need for women to lash out at their fellow women?
  • Is Religion really the Opium of the Masses as Suggested by Karl Max?
  • Are there significant drawbacks to marrying off of a Dating App?
  • How Social Media Fame negatively impacts one’s real-life experiences
  • Is the presence of Artificial Intelligence going to lead to human extinction?
  • How hyperactivity on Social media plays out in impacting loneliness
  • Is there a possibility of Electronic money wiping out paper money?
  • Can human society experience growth without the presence of technology?
  • Is the consistent attachment to cell phones contributing to depression and anxiety?
  • Do public cameras infringe on individual privacy?
  • Is sustainable living capable of helping us reverse Climate Change?
  • Limiting Children’s screen time, does it contribute to their academic growth?
  • Should people be encouraged to use Marijuana now its health benefits have been dictated?
  • Are Academic Stress and excessive academic workload a form of psychological torture?
  • Has homeschooling improved the nature and operation of the school system?
  • Does beauty pageantry influence the concept and idea of beauty in society?
  • Is it Ethical to demand maternity leave for fathers?
  • Is Killing a Murderer a Punishable offense?
  • Should High school children be introduced to sex education in school?
  • How does the knowledge of sex education impact high schoolers?
  • Lecturer-Student friendship: is it an ethical practice?
  • Are students supposed to bring school work back home?
  • Impromptu test within the University system: Cancelled or Promoted?
  • Does access to so much information lead to Misinformation?
  • Does homeschooling contribute to students’ anti-socialism?
  • Should College Education be made completely free?
  • Will free education make or mar the performance of the academic institution?
  • Is GPA a sound determinant of intelligence?

Visual Rhetoric Essay Topics

There are different means through which rhetoric can be employed as a communication feature. Rhetorics occur in oral form, in written format as well as in the visual display. Visual rhetoric essay topics detail effective communication that is attained through the use and analysis of visual images, this is what differentiates it from other forms of rhetorical essays.

Communication through visual presentation has been noted to be effective and visual rhetoric makes communication and understanding very easy. It occurs in movies, painting, commercials, and other forms of art exploration.

For college students, especially those majoring in media studies and visual arts, assignments usually fall under visual rhetoric essays and visual text analysis. Here are some of the topics to look at within this subject matter.

  • Analyze the impact of TV Commercials and Ads on consumers
  • A case study of a prominent Hollywood production and the visual arts involved
  • Rhetorical analysis of the emotional appeals employed in web ads
  • Dissecting the ad of a TV Commercial and its implications
  • The emotional appeal within the movie The Help and permeates the entire Movie
  • A critical exploration of Leonardo Da Vinci’s Mona Lisa Painting
  • The use of Lighting and Effect in Movies and what they Signify
  • The Cinematography of a Movie: A Language of its own
  • How Visual Commercials influence us more than Written Commercials
  • An exploration of the use of visuals in marketing
  • Analysis of Yellow Journalism
  • What is the most effective visual ad you’ve seen and how did it influence you towards a product?
  • How Visual ads increase people’s purchasing power
  • An in-depth analysis of effective visual campaigns
  • How TV influences our understanding of and our relation to society

Having a Hard Time Thinking of Rhertorical Analysis Topics?

Writing a rhetorical essay can be quite tasking as it requires that you embark on extensive research, digging through myriad materials in order to have a substantial essay. What is required to achieve a sound essay can really be a lot of work especially if you’re already engulfed with other activities. Nevertheless, there is the presence of fast expert writers online that offer essay writing help to you in any situation. Our essay writing service isn’t just high quality but is also very cheap. You do not just get the value of a great job, but also the promise of high grades and a stress-free and reliable service.

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Lindsay Ann Learning English Teacher Blog

70 Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics for Secondary ELA

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May 28, 2019 //  by  Lindsay Ann //   8 Comments

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Before we get to the rhetorical analysis essay prompts (a.k.a. tons of ready-to-analyze texts at your fingertips), let’s take a time-out to lay the groundwork for understanding a rhetorical analysis essay using ethos, pathos, and logos.

Rhetoric is Defined As…

Put simply, rhetoric refers to any technique an author uses to persuade an audience.

Or, the behind-the-scenes choices an author makes to give you all the feels. 

Chances are, if you consider a text or speech to be  really good , rhetorical techniques are working like a master puppeteer to pull at your heart strings, make an impact on your brain, and get you to let down your guard because you trust the author or speaker.

That’s why political figures have speech writers.

That’s why authors spend time fine-tuning their words and sentences.

Rhetoric is important.

In addition, rhetoric goes back to the ancient Greek philosophers like Aristotle, the “father” of rhetoric.

rhetorical-analysis-essay-high-school

The Rhetorical Analysis Essay

Moving on, if rhetoric is the art of persuasion, then the rhetorical analysis essay analyzes how an author or speaker creates opportunity for persuasion in his/her text.

Writing a rhetorical analysis essay involves understanding of context and occasion for writing. It also involves understanding the subject matter of the speech and intended audience.

Beyond this, noticing how the author uses rhetorical appeals and rhetorical devices to impact the target audience can help you to write an in-depth rhetorical essay analysis.

The BEST Rhetoric Topics

rhetorical-analysis-essay

As a teacher, I’m always in search of engaging texts for students to analyze. In this post, I’m sharing the best speeches, advertisements, and essays  for rhetorical analysis. You’ll never run out of rhetorical analysis essay topics again!

So, you’ll definitely want to stop right now and pin this post. 

Your future English-teacher-self will thank you. 

47 Rhetoric Examples in Speeches

The following speeches work well individually, but I’ve also tried to add value by pairing texts together.

Whether you’re analyzing rhetorical appeals such as ethos, pathos, and logos or looking at rhetorical devices, these speeches will work for discussion or as the text for a rhetorical analysis essay.

rhetorical-analysis-essay

  • Gettysburg Monologue in Remember the Titans  – Pair with “ The Gettysburg Address ” by Abraham Lincoln
  • “ Full Power of Women ” by Priyanka Chopra – Pair with Emma Watson’s speech on the Power of Women
  • Speech from Finding Forrester – Pair with “ Integrity ” by Warren Buffet
  • Red’s Parole Hearing from Shawshank Redemption – Pair with the Freedom Speech from Braveheart
  • Ending Scene from The Breakfast Club – Pair with  “ The Danger of a Single Story ” by Chimamanda Ngozi Achichi
  • Authentic Swing Speech from The Legend of Bagger Vance – Pair with  “ How Winning is Done ” from  Rocky Balboa
  • Maximus’ Speech to Commodus from Gladiator – Pair with  The Revolutionary Speech  from  V for Vendetta
  • The Natural State of Mankind from Amistad – Pair with “ Our Diversity Makes Us Who We Are ” by Michelle Obama
  • Denzel Washington’s  Dillard University Commencement Speech – Pair with “ The Last Lecture ” by Randy Pausch
  • “ Like Pieces of Glass in my Head ” from The Green Mile – Pair with “ Eulogy for Beau Biden ” by Barack Obama
  • Oprah’s  2018 Golden Globes speech – Pair with  Seth Myers’ Golden Globes Monologue  and/or  Ellen says #MeToo
  • Independence Day speech – Pair with  Aragorn’s Helm’s Deep Speech  from LOTR: The Two Towers
  • Pair  “I am Human”  &  “Love Liberates” , both by Maya Angelou
  • Pink’s  VMA acceptance speech – Pair with “ If I Should Have a Daughter ” by Sarah Kay
  • Ellen’s  People’s Choice Humanitarian Award Acceptance Speech – Pair with “ Pep Talk ” by Kid President
  • Gandalf Speaks to Frodo in Moria  from  LOTR : Fellowship of the Ring – Pair with   Sam’s Speech   in LOTR: The Two Towers
  • Obama’s  Final Farewell Speech – Pair with Al Pacino’s  Any Given Sunday  speech – clean version
  • Harvard Graduation Speech by Donovan Livingston – Pair with Steve Jobs  2005 Stanford Commencement Speech
  • “ Inside the Mind of a Master Procrastinator ” by Tim Urban – Pair with “ Five Second Rule ” by Mel Robbins
  • Rachel Hollis “Inspire Women to be Their Best” (mild profanity)
  • My Philosophy for a Happy Life by Sam Berns
  • “ To this Day: For the Bullied and the Beautiful ” by Shane Koyczan – Pair with Kid President’s “ Pep Talk to Teachers and Students “
  • “ The Power of Introverts ” by Susan Cain – Pair with “ Don’t Let Others Stop You From Living Your Own Truth “

Rhetoric in Advertising: 23 Examples

This next list holds a blend of print advertisements and commercials, perfect for introducing close reading and rhetorical analysis and for writing a rhetorical analysis essay.

Ads are short, but pack a punch. Honestly, my students love analyzing the rhetoric of advertisements a lot because they are accessible and visual.

Rhetoric Commercials & Print Advertisements

  • “ Web of Fries “
  • Duracell “ Teddy Bear ” Commercial
  • Apple 1984 Commercial Introducing the New Macintosh Computer
  • Nike “ Find Your Greatness ” Ads
  • Pepsi, Superbowl 53 Commercial: “ More than Okay ”
  • “ Get a Mac ” Commercial Compilation
  • “ Can You Hear Me Now ” Verizon Wireless
  • Apple iPhone X – “ Unlock ”
  • Kiwi “ First Steps ” Print Advertisement
  • Vauxhall’s  Backwards Cinderella
  • Lego Print Advertisement
  • Top 10 Powerful Ads of 2014

Rhetoric of the Image

  • Entourage NGO for the Homeless Print Advertisement Images
  • 33 Creative Print Ads
  • Protege Group
  • Greenpeace Print Advertisement Collection
  • “ Divorce Furniture “
  • L’Oréal Paris: “This Ad Is For Men, 1 ” L’Oréal Paris: “This Ad Is For Men, 2 ” L’Oréal Paris: “This Ad Is For Men, 3 ”
  • “ It’s Not Acceptable to Treat a Woman Like One”
  • “ 50 Creative and Effective Advertising Examples “
  • Juvenile Protective Association
  • Anti-Bullying Campaign
  • 25 Serious Ads

Writing a Rhetorical Analysis Essay Using Ethos, Pathos, and Logos

No doubt, writing a rhetorical analysis essay is like taking apart a puzzle and putting it back together again. Teachers, help your students to understand how all of the pieces fit together in order to see the bigger picture of what the author is trying to accomplish.

First, take time to understand how a text “works” for a rhetorical analysis essay using ethos, pathos, and logos:

  • Read or listen to understand overall content. Look up unfamiliar words.
  • Mark the text for the author’s main points and sub-points.
  • descriptive
  • compare/contrast
  • cause/effect
  • argumentative
  • Take notes on SOAPS: subject, occasion, audience, purpose, speaker
  • Discuss the text(s) in Socratic Seminar .

Next, identify rhetorical appeals . 

  • Ethos: How an author demonstrates credibility and builds trust.
  • Pathos: How an author creates an emotional response.
  • Logos: How an author demonstrates expertise and knowledge.

Look for rhetorical devices & patterns in the text.

  • Rhetorical devices refer to an author’s use of diction and syntax.
  • Does the author repeat key words / phrases? What’s the impact?
  • Does the author return to the same idea or image? Why?

Finally, write a clear thesis statement & topic sentences for your rhetorical analysis essay.

  • Use your thesis statement to generate topic sentences.
  • In your body paragraphs, identify a technique, provide an example, and discuss the “right there” and “beneath the surface” meanings. How does the author’s choice impact the audience, further a message, establish a tone?
  • What’s the context for the repetition?
  • What connotations are important?
  • How is the anaphora used to move the reader to greater understanding (logos), emotional investment (pathos), and/or trust in the author’s ideas (ethos)?

Six Strategies for Teaching Rhetorical Analysis

I’ve created an awesome free guide to inspire English teachers who teach rhetoric and the rhetorical analysis essay in their classrooms. Even if you don’t teach AP lang, you can benefit from these strategies !

rhetorical-analysis-teaching-guide

Rhetorical Analysis Essay FAQ’s

How do you write a rhetorical analysis essay.

Writing a rhetorical analysis essay is like writing a literary analysis essay, except the focus is on one or more non-fiction texts and the analysis targets an author’s style or rhetorical “moves” (a.k.a. use of rhetorical appeals and/or devices). Rhetorical analysis essays usually prove a claim about the author’s message or purpose for writing. The paragraphs in a rhetorical analysis essay unpack “what” an author is doing to send this message and “how” these choices impact the audience.

What does it mean to write a rhetorical analysis?

Writing a rhetorical analysis means that you are aware, as an audience member, reader, listener, human being, of the messages you consume. As a critical consumer of others’ ideas, you ask hard questions about how these messages are shaped, why they’re being delivered in certain ways, and why this is important for you and for society.

What are the three rhetorical strategies?

The three most commonly known rhetorical strategies are known as rhetorical appeals. Ethos (ethics) refers to credibility and trustworthiness. Pathos (passion) refers to engaging an audience’s emotions. Logos (logic) refers to engaging an audience’s brain through logical organization and use of evidence and arguments.

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About Lindsay Ann

Lindsay has been teaching high school English in the burbs of Chicago for 19 years. She is passionate about helping English teachers find balance in their lives and teaching practice through practical feedback strategies and student-led learning strategies. She also geeks out about literary analysis, inquiry-based learning, and classroom technology integration. When Lindsay is not teaching, she enjoys playing with her two kids, running, and getting lost in a good book.

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Reader Interactions

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January 9, 2023 at 9:38 am

Hi Lindsay Ann, thanks so much for these great resources. Just wanted to gently point out a couple errors that you might want to fix:

#12: should be Seth Myers’ (not Seth Myer’s) #13: should be independence (not independance)

Teachers have to help each other out 🙂

Best, Nikkee

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January 9, 2023 at 5:44 pm

Thank you so much for letting me know, Nikkee!

[…] a lot of options and extensions for analyzing rhetoric in social media. Who knows, maybe your next rhetorical analysis essay assignment will be focused on rhetoric in social […]

[…] 70 Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics for Secondary ELA […]

[…] find that teaching rhetorical analysis and close reading skills go hand-in-hand with teaching voice in […]

[…] helps students to remember that everything comes back to the author’s purpose or message in rhetorical analysis. Author’s purpose is central to unpacking an author’s choices, including use of […]

[…] you assigning a rhetorical analysis essay? Why not try having students use rhetorical analysis sentence […]

[…] I introduced students to rhetoric. First, we journaled on this topic: Think of a time someone talked you into doing something or believing something. How did they do it? What tactics did they use? Students may share out journals. I gave students a graphic organizer with a PAPA analysis (purpose, audience, persona, argument) and picked a speech. Frankly, the speech I picked, which was Samwise Gamgee’s speech to Frodo Baggins in The Two Towers, failed spectacularly since students had no frame of reference. Note: that movie is old now. I know. It makes me sad, too. So go cautiously if you use this, but maybe pick something else. You can find a massive list here. […]

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  • Knowledge Base
  • How to write a rhetorical analysis | Key concepts & examples

How to Write a Rhetorical Analysis | Key Concepts & Examples

Published on August 28, 2020 by Jack Caulfield . Revised on July 23, 2023.

A rhetorical analysis is a type of essay  that looks at a text in terms of rhetoric. This means it is less concerned with what the author is saying than with how they say it: their goals, techniques, and appeals to the audience.

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Table of contents

Key concepts in rhetoric, analyzing the text, introducing your rhetorical analysis, the body: doing the analysis, concluding a rhetorical analysis, other interesting articles, frequently asked questions about rhetorical analysis.

Rhetoric, the art of effective speaking and writing, is a subject that trains you to look at texts, arguments and speeches in terms of how they are designed to persuade the audience. This section introduces a few of the key concepts of this field.

Appeals: Logos, ethos, pathos

Appeals are how the author convinces their audience. Three central appeals are discussed in rhetoric, established by the philosopher Aristotle and sometimes called the rhetorical triangle: logos, ethos, and pathos.

Logos , or the logical appeal, refers to the use of reasoned argument to persuade. This is the dominant approach in academic writing , where arguments are built up using reasoning and evidence.

Ethos , or the ethical appeal, involves the author presenting themselves as an authority on their subject. For example, someone making a moral argument might highlight their own morally admirable behavior; someone speaking about a technical subject might present themselves as an expert by mentioning their qualifications.

Pathos , or the pathetic appeal, evokes the audience’s emotions. This might involve speaking in a passionate way, employing vivid imagery, or trying to provoke anger, sympathy, or any other emotional response in the audience.

These three appeals are all treated as integral parts of rhetoric, and a given author may combine all three of them to convince their audience.

Text and context

In rhetoric, a text is not necessarily a piece of writing (though it may be this). A text is whatever piece of communication you are analyzing. This could be, for example, a speech, an advertisement, or a satirical image.

In these cases, your analysis would focus on more than just language—you might look at visual or sonic elements of the text too.

The context is everything surrounding the text: Who is the author (or speaker, designer, etc.)? Who is their (intended or actual) audience? When and where was the text produced, and for what purpose?

Looking at the context can help to inform your rhetorical analysis. For example, Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech has universal power, but the context of the civil rights movement is an important part of understanding why.

Claims, supports, and warrants

A piece of rhetoric is always making some sort of argument, whether it’s a very clearly defined and logical one (e.g. in a philosophy essay) or one that the reader has to infer (e.g. in a satirical article). These arguments are built up with claims, supports, and warrants.

A claim is the fact or idea the author wants to convince the reader of. An argument might center on a single claim, or be built up out of many. Claims are usually explicitly stated, but they may also just be implied in some kinds of text.

The author uses supports to back up each claim they make. These might range from hard evidence to emotional appeals—anything that is used to convince the reader to accept a claim.

The warrant is the logic or assumption that connects a support with a claim. Outside of quite formal argumentation, the warrant is often unstated—the author assumes their audience will understand the connection without it. But that doesn’t mean you can’t still explore the implicit warrant in these cases.

For example, look at the following statement:

We can see a claim and a support here, but the warrant is implicit. Here, the warrant is the assumption that more likeable candidates would have inspired greater turnout. We might be more or less convinced by the argument depending on whether we think this is a fair assumption.

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argumentative rhetorical analysis essay topics

Rhetorical analysis isn’t a matter of choosing concepts in advance and applying them to a text. Instead, it starts with looking at the text in detail and asking the appropriate questions about how it works:

  • What is the author’s purpose?
  • Do they focus closely on their key claims, or do they discuss various topics?
  • What tone do they take—angry or sympathetic? Personal or authoritative? Formal or informal?
  • Who seems to be the intended audience? Is this audience likely to be successfully reached and convinced?
  • What kinds of evidence are presented?

By asking these questions, you’ll discover the various rhetorical devices the text uses. Don’t feel that you have to cram in every rhetorical term you know—focus on those that are most important to the text.

The following sections show how to write the different parts of a rhetorical analysis.

Like all essays, a rhetorical analysis begins with an introduction . The introduction tells readers what text you’ll be discussing, provides relevant background information, and presents your thesis statement .

Hover over different parts of the example below to see how an introduction works.

Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech is widely regarded as one of the most important pieces of oratory in American history. Delivered in 1963 to thousands of civil rights activists outside the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C., the speech has come to symbolize the spirit of the civil rights movement and even to function as a major part of the American national myth. This rhetorical analysis argues that King’s assumption of the prophetic voice, amplified by the historic size of his audience, creates a powerful sense of ethos that has retained its inspirational power over the years.

The body of your rhetorical analysis is where you’ll tackle the text directly. It’s often divided into three paragraphs, although it may be more in a longer essay.

Each paragraph should focus on a different element of the text, and they should all contribute to your overall argument for your thesis statement.

Hover over the example to explore how a typical body paragraph is constructed.

King’s speech is infused with prophetic language throughout. Even before the famous “dream” part of the speech, King’s language consistently strikes a prophetic tone. He refers to the Lincoln Memorial as a “hallowed spot” and speaks of rising “from the dark and desolate valley of segregation” to “make justice a reality for all of God’s children.” The assumption of this prophetic voice constitutes the text’s strongest ethical appeal; after linking himself with political figures like Lincoln and the Founding Fathers, King’s ethos adopts a distinctly religious tone, recalling Biblical prophets and preachers of change from across history. This adds significant force to his words; standing before an audience of hundreds of thousands, he states not just what the future should be, but what it will be: “The whirlwinds of revolt will continue to shake the foundations of our nation until the bright day of justice emerges.” This warning is almost apocalyptic in tone, though it concludes with the positive image of the “bright day of justice.” The power of King’s rhetoric thus stems not only from the pathos of his vision of a brighter future, but from the ethos of the prophetic voice he adopts in expressing this vision.

The conclusion of a rhetorical analysis wraps up the essay by restating the main argument and showing how it has been developed by your analysis. It may also try to link the text, and your analysis of it, with broader concerns.

Explore the example below to get a sense of the conclusion.

It is clear from this analysis that the effectiveness of King’s rhetoric stems less from the pathetic appeal of his utopian “dream” than it does from the ethos he carefully constructs to give force to his statements. By framing contemporary upheavals as part of a prophecy whose fulfillment will result in the better future he imagines, King ensures not only the effectiveness of his words in the moment but their continuing resonance today. Even if we have not yet achieved King’s dream, we cannot deny the role his words played in setting us on the path toward it.

If you want to know more about AI tools , college essays , or fallacies make sure to check out some of our other articles with explanations and examples or go directly to our tools!

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The goal of a rhetorical analysis is to explain the effect a piece of writing or oratory has on its audience, how successful it is, and the devices and appeals it uses to achieve its goals.

Unlike a standard argumentative essay , it’s less about taking a position on the arguments presented, and more about exploring how they are constructed.

The term “text” in a rhetorical analysis essay refers to whatever object you’re analyzing. It’s frequently a piece of writing or a speech, but it doesn’t have to be. For example, you could also treat an advertisement or political cartoon as a text.

Logos appeals to the audience’s reason, building up logical arguments . Ethos appeals to the speaker’s status or authority, making the audience more likely to trust them. Pathos appeals to the emotions, trying to make the audience feel angry or sympathetic, for example.

Collectively, these three appeals are sometimes called the rhetorical triangle . They are central to rhetorical analysis , though a piece of rhetoric might not necessarily use all of them.

In rhetorical analysis , a claim is something the author wants the audience to believe. A support is the evidence or appeal they use to convince the reader to believe the claim. A warrant is the (often implicit) assumption that links the support with the claim.

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122 Various Rhetorical Analysis Topics To Help Your Progress

rhetorical analysis topics

Many students don’t know where to start when choosing rhetorical analysis topics for academic papers. That’s because writing about these topics requires students to explore the subject in detail and prove their standpoint. Usually, educators expect learners to use effective and persuasive methods to achieve this goal. In simple terms, a rhetorical essay involves writing about writing.

This article presents a rhetorical analysis topics list for learners at different educational levels. It’s useful because it provides helpful ideas to help students with difficulties create interesting titles for their papers.

What Is Rhetorical Analysis?

Before diving into the list of rhetorical analysis topics, let’s define rhetoric.

A dictionary will say rhetoric is “the effective or persuasive art of writing or speaking, especially one that exploits figures of speech and other compositional techniques.”

However, rhetoric is more than just an art form. It’s also a tool that a writer can use to achieve a specific goal. In the context of academic writing, learners often use rhetoric to persuade the reader to see things from their point of view.

For example, consider the following statement:

“The death penalty is naturally an inhuman and cruel punishment that governments should abolish.”

This statement is an example of rhetoric because the writer uses persuasive language to make an argument. They want to convince the reader that the death penalty is wrong and governments should stop it.

What Are Good Rhetorical Analysis Topics?

Good rhetorical analysis titles allow the writer to analyze something and its effect on the audience or themselves. Although a rhetorical analysis essay can be about a speech or literature, it can also be about a movie or art. Some educators even ask learners to write rhetorical analyses about billboards or commercials. Nevertheless, an ideal topic allows the writer to acquire and analyze sufficient information.

Remember, the goal of a rhetorical analysis is to evaluate the effectiveness of an argument or a piece of work. Therefore, pick a topic that allows you to do this. Once you’ve known what rhetorical analysis is and what makes good topics, let’s delve into some of the titles worth considering.

Best Topics For Rhetorical Analysis In 2023

Maybe you’re looking for the best ideas to consider for your academic essays or papers. In that case, here are some of the titles to consider for your write-up.

  • How social media affects body image
  • Common rhetorical strategies in advertising
  • What is the relationship between violence and video games?
  • How does music affect mood?
  • The role of the internet in education
  • Should governments lower the legal drinking age?
  • Should governments legalize marijuana?
  • Euthanasia: To be or not to be?
  • Cloning: The ethical implications and applications
  • Is homeschooling a viable educational alternative?
  • Is childhood obesity a reflection of bad parenting?
  • Are beauty pageants exploitative?
  • Should the government censor the internet?
  • Can the death penalty deter crime?
  • Should abortion be legal?
  • Are zoos ethical?
  • Should governments dictate the number of children a family can have?
  • Should parents be allowed to choose the sex of their child?
  • Is it ethical to buy organs on the black market?
  • What are the ethical implications of human cloning?
  • The impact of social media on relationships
  • How do the media influence body image and eating disorders?
  • The effect of advertising on consumerism
  • Exploring music’s influence on emotions
  • Investigating the internet’s impact on education
  • The changing face of family structure and its effects
  • The pros and cons of homeschooling
  • Cyber-bullying- Its impact and how to prevent it
  • School uniforms: Are they necessary?
  • Religion in schools: Should the government allow it?
  • Censorship in schools: What are the criteria for choosing books, art, music, and film?
  • Are standardized tests an accurate measure of student ability?
  • Is tracking students by ability level beneficial?
  • Should schools eliminate homework?
  • Is the current educational system preparing students for the workforce?

Pick any of these ideas and investigate them to provide a detailed analysis. You can consult different sources to present an informative paper.

Rhetorical Analysis Ideas For College Students

Perhaps, you’re pursuing your college or university education, and the professor wants you to write a rhetorical analysis essay. In that case, here’s a list of topic ideas to consider for your paper.

  • How do authors use ethos, pathos, and logos in their work?
  • What is the purpose of the author’s argument?- Provide an example
  • Choose a piece of literary work and describe the target audience
  • Explain the methods the author uses to persuade their audience- Choose your scholarly work.
  • Explain the implications of the author’s argument in your preferred literary work
  • Use an example to demonstrate the effectiveness of the author’s rhetoric
  • The rhetoric issue in Plato’s Republic
  • Why did “I Have a Dream” by Martin Luther King break the internet?
  • Rhetorical analysis of the film, Black Panther
  • Analyze the speech writing power in George Washington’s speeches
  • Rhetorical devices and their use in television advertising
  • Analyzing the rhetorical analysis devices in the Monalisa portrait
  • Literary devices and their function in plays and poetry
  • Rhetorical devices in Harry Porter
  • Analyzing the September 11 speech- Which rhetorical devices stand out?
  • How online content like blogs use rhetoric
  • Analyze your favorite book and show how it affected your life
  • Analyze rhetorical devices in your preferred political speech of the 21st century
  • How technology facilitates the manipulation of rhetoric devices
  • Analyzing rhetorical devices in Charles Spurgeon’s sermons
  • Rhetorical analysis of The Great Dictator by Charlie Chaplin
  • Critical analysis of a scene from your favorite movie- Highlight rhetoric devices
  • What marks acceptance speeches, and how do speakers use rhetorical devices
  • Rhetoric in preaching- How preachers impact the congregation
  • Discuss how authors use solitude in literature

These college-level rhetorical analysis ideas allow you to investigate different aspects of writing. Also, they provide a detailed perspective that helps you understand how to approach the assignments.

Good Rhetorical Analysis Topics For High School Learners

Maybe you’re in high school, and the teacher wants you to write a rhetorical analysis essay. If so, this list has ideal titles to consider for your paper.

  • Can a real friendship exist between a dog and a man?
  • Language is crucial to society- A detailed rhetorical analysis
  • The dog is the best housekeeper- A rhetorical analysis of this phrase
  • A comparison of how men and women consume ad messages
  • Rhetorical analysis of women’s attitudes towards fashion compared to men
  • Consumerism and environment- A rhetorical analysis
  • Analysis and summary of “The Kite Runner.”
  • The Animal Farm- A detailed rhetorical analysis of this book
  • Write a rhetorical analysis essay on your favorite birthday
  • A detailed rhetorical analysis of a speech by the school’s head teacher on graduation day
  • Rhetorical analysis of the inaugural address by your favorite teacher
  • Rhetorical analysis of a Nobel Peace Prize Winner’s speech
  • Rhetorical analysis and themes of William Shakespeare’s Pride and Prejudice
  • Online consumers- A detailed rhetorical analysis of their behavior
  • A rhetorical analysis of the electronic media’s impact on culture
  • Social media and its power- A rhetorical analysis of its power in turning the world into a global village
  • Olympics and World Cup- A detailed rhetorical analysis
  • National anthem in Olympic games- A rhetorical analysis
  • A rhetorical analysis of William Shakespeare’s Hamlet
  • Primary themes in Alice in the Wanderland- A rhetorical analysis

These are good topics to write a rhetorical analysis on if you’re in high school. However, you may want to read some books or study the works to write informative and winning papers.

Easy Rhetorical Analysis Topics

Maybe you don’t have adequate time to read or investigate somebody else’s work and write about it. In that case, the following ideas could be excellent for your titles.

  • The Hunger Games- What are this work’s most practical rhetorical strategies?
  • How ancient and modern stylistic devices differ
  • A Room of One’s Own by Virginia Woolf- Exploring the primary rhetorical devices
  • Rhetorical analysis of the class representative’s speech on the Memorial Day
  • The Picture of Dorian Gray- Investigating the critical stylistic devices
  • Develop a rhetorical composition of varying religious texts
  • Rhetorical analysis of Mona Lisa’s smile and its meaning
  • A detailed rhetorical analysis of pop-culture songs
  • Rhetorical analysis of Les Demoiselles d’Avignon by Pablo Picasso
  • Heroism as a theme- How does it come out in different literary works?
  • How authors handle race and prejudice in their works
  • Rhetorical strategies in Harry Potter’s work
  • Rhetorical analysis of a speech by Alexander the Great
  • Themes and their relevance in literary texts about love and hope
  • Rhetorical analysis of Louisa May Alcott in promoting feminism
  • Investigating the American National Anthem- What are the vital rhetorical devices?
  • Does the Fight Song by Rachel Platten mark creativity and art?
  • Why do Ted Talks attract so many listeners?
  • How advertisers curate poster and billboard language in advertising
  • The impact of vivid description and symbols on literary work’s visual impression

These rhetoric topics are relatively easy to write about, but some may require a little research. Nevertheless, most learners will find working on these subjects straightforward.

Rhetoric Research Paper Topics

Maybe you’re writing a research paper and need a rhetorical title. If so, consider these ideas for your project or thesis from professional dissertation writers .

  • How has the definition of rhetoric changed over time?
  • What are the different types of rhetoric?
  • How do persuasive and argumentative rhetorics differ?
  • What are the ethical implications of rhetoric?
  • How does rhetoric affect society?
  • How can authors use rhetoric for good or evil?
  • How art uses rhetoric
  • Creative ads and symbolism
  • Game of Thrones- How does the film use visual arts?
  • Rhetorical devices in digital media campaigns
  • How does the film/television show portray its characters?
  • What is the purpose of the film/television show?
  • Who is the target audience for this piece?
  • What methods does the film/television show use to persuade its audience?
  • What are the implications of the film/television show?
  • Is the film/television show’s rhetoric effective? Why or why not?
  • Works about GMO and human health- A rhetorical analysis
  • Automated system use and rhetorical devices
  • Sports segregation by gender- a rhetorical analysis
  • Data privacy and social media- A detailed rhetorical analysis
  • College athletes’ payment- A rhetorical analysis
  • Investigating gun legalization- Rhetorical analysis of this topic

These are some of the best rhetorical analysis example topics to consider for your essay or paper. Choose a title that interests you and investigate it to present a detailed perspective.

Get Custom Essay Help Online

Maybe you have a title for your paper but not the time or skills to write a quality essay. In that case, get help from our experts to write a winning piece or undergraduate thesis . We’re professional writers with a proven track record of helping learners across the academic levels. Our crew makes completing a writing assignment an awesome experience. You will realize that writing a rhetorical paper is fun with our assistance. We will deliver a masterpiece even if you need help with an advanced essay.

Moreover, we guarantee the security of the information you share with us. Also, you will consistently score top grades whenever you seek our assistance. Contact us now!

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Rhetorical Analysis Essay

Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics

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320+ Best Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics

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Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics

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Looking for the right rhetorical analysis essay topic can be a tough challenge for some people!

It’s a well-established fact that for such essays, you need to have an excellent grip on the topic you choose.

For that purpose, we have created a comprehensive list of rhetorical analysis essay topics, so you can pick the topic that matches your interest perfectly.  Before coming to the topic ideas, let’s briefly discuss what is a rhetorical analysis essay.

Arrow Down

  • 1. Introduction to Rhetorical Analysis Essay Writing
  • 2. Good Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics
  • 3. Controversial Topics For Rhetorical Analysis
  • 4. Hot Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics In 2024
  • 5. Rhetorical Analysis Essay Ideas for Different Academic Levels
  • 6. Fictional Rhetorical Analysis Topics For Essay
  • 7. Non-Fictional Topics for Rhetorical Analysis Essay
  • 8. Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics About Speeches
  • 9. Unique Literature Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics
  • 10. Current Rhetorical Analysis Topics
  • 11. Rhetorical Essay Topics About Advertisements
  • 12. Visual Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics
  • 13. Funny Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics
  • 14. Comparative Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics
  • 15. Argumentative Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics
  • 16. Interesting Rhetorical Analysis Topics
  • 17. How to Choose a Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topic? 

Introduction to Rhetorical Analysis Essay Writing

In a  rhetorical analysis essay , a writer deeply analyzes a work of literature, art, or film, takes a stance, and thoroughly evaluates the purpose of the original content.

The goal is to ensure effective delivery to the audience. 

Having said that, a rhetorical analysis essay finds out how effective the message of the original content was. And how the author or speaker uses rhetorical advice and strategies to convey their message.   

Now, let’s move on to the handpicked list of topics! 

Good Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics

  • Rhetorical Devices in Barack Obama's Presidential Inauguration
  • A Rhetorical Analysis of Donald Trump's Twitter Communication.
  • Exploring the Language of Feminism in Contemporary Media.
  • Unpacking the Rhetorical Appeals in Climate Change Advocacy Campaigns.
  • Examining Persuasive Techniques in Civil Rights Movement Literature.
  • Analyzing Rhetorical Strategies in Advertising to Children.
  • The Rhetoric of Fear in Post-9/11 Political Speeches.
  • Investigating the Rhetorical Appeals in Superhero Movie Trailers.
  • A Rhetorical Analysis of Visual Elements in Graphic Design Campaigns.
  • Exploring Rhetorical Strategies in Online Activism Movements such as #BlackLivesMatter.

Easy Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics

  • “Pride and Prejudice” by Jane Austen.
  • “The Revenant” by Michael Punke.
  • “Witches' Loaves” by O. Henry.
  • “Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” by Mark Twain.
  • “Unbroken” by Laura Hillenbrand.
  • “The Lottery” by Shirley Jackson.
  • “Yes Please” by Amy Poehler.
  • “To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee.
  • “Fight Club” by Chuck Palahniuk.
  • “A White Heron” by Sarah Orne Jewett.

Controversial Topics For Rhetorical Analysis

  • Analyzing Rhetoric in Gun Control Debates.
  • The Power of Persuasion in Abortion Rights Advocacy.
  • Deconstructing Rhetorical Strategies in Immigration Reform Discussions.
  • Exploring Ethical Dilemmas in Euthanasia Debates.
  • Framing Climate Change Discourse in Political Campaigns.
  • Unveiling Persuasive Techniques in Vaccination Controversies.
  • Analyzing Rhetoric in LGBTQ+ Rights Movements.
  • The Rhetoric of Police Brutality Protests.
  • Deconstructing Persuasion in Capital Punishment Arguments.
  • Exploring the Rhetoric of Cultural Appropriation Discussions.

Hot Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics In 2024

  • Unveiling Rhetoric in Virtual Reality Marketing.
  • Analyzing Persuasion in Climate Change Debates.
  • The Power of Social Media Influencers' Discourse.
  • Deconstructing Persuasive Techniques in Cryptocurrency Promotion.
  • Exploring Rhetorical Strategies in Gen Z Activism.
  • Framing Mental Health Discourse in Online Communities.
  • Analyzing Ethical Dilemmas in AI Ethics Debates.
  • Unveiling Persuasive Techniques in Space Tourism Advertising.
  • Deconstructing Rhetoric in Genetic Engineering Debates.
  • Exploring the Rhetoric of Universal Basic Income Advocacy.

Rhetorical Analysis Essay Ideas for Different Academic Levels

We know some students struggle with finding good topics for rhetorical analysis essays.  This list has some interesting ideas for different academic levels to get you started! 

Just pick a topic and write a great essay.

Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics for College Students

  • “Antigone” by Sophocles.
  • “The Birthmark” by Nathaniel Hawthorne.
  • “The Crucible” by Arthur Miller.
  • “Dubliners” by James Joyce.
  • “East of Eden” by John Steinbeck.
  • “Fahrenheit 451” by Ray Bradbury.
  • “A Yellow Raft in Blue Water” by Michael Dorris.
  • “Where the Red Fern Grows” by Wilson Rawls.
  • “The Tempest” by William Shakespeare.
  • “Song of Solomon” by Toni Morrison.

Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics for High School

  • “And Then There Were None” by Agatha Christie.
  • “Beloved” by Toni Morrison.
  • “The Canterbury Tales” by Geoffrey Chaucer.
  • “Death of a Salesman” by Arthur Miller.
  • “An Enemy of the People” by Henrik Ibsen.
  • “Frankenstein” by Mary Shelley.
  • “Young Goodman Brown” by Nathaniel Hawthorne.
  • “The Waves” by Virginia Woolf.
  • “Their Eyes Were Watching God” by Zora Neale Hurston.
  • “The Story of an Hour” by Kate Chopin.

Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics for Middle School

  • "Yes, Please" By Amy Poehler
  • "The Revenant" By Michael Punke
  • The Primary Themes In "Alice's Adventures In Wonderland"
  • "Huckleberry Finn" Rhetorical Analysis
  • "Witches Loaves" By O'Henry
  • Discuss My Philosophy for a Happy Life by Sam Berns.
  • The Painted Veil.
  • Analyze Romeo and Juliet.
  • Analyze the “The Power of Introverts” by Susan Cain.
  • Amy Poehler. “Yes, Please.”

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Fictional Rhetorical Analysis Topics For Essay

  • Analyzing Persuasive Techniques in "Game of Thrones".
  • A Study of Propaganda in Suzanne Collins' "The Hunger Games" Trilogy.
  • Analyzing Rhetorical Strategies in Arthur Conan Doyle's Detective Stories.
  • Analyzing Persuasive Techniques in "The Bachelor" Franchise.
  • Examining Persuasive Techniques in J.K. Rowling's "Harry Potter" Series.
  • Analyzing Persuasion in George Orwell's "Animal Farm".
  • Deconstructing the Rhetorical Devices of Edgar Allan Poe's "The Raven".
  • The Rhetorical Manipulation in George R.R. Martin's "A Song of Ice and Fire" Series.
  • Unveiling the Rhetoric of Hope in Suzanne Collins' "Mockingjay".
  • Analyzing Rhetorical Techniques in Shakespeare's "Julius Caesar".

Non-Fictional Topics for Rhetorical Analysis Essay

  • “Mini Habits: Smaller Habits, Bigger Results” by Stephen Guise.
  • “The Ethics of Belief” by William Kingdon Clifford.
  • “Easter Island's End” by Jared Diamond.
  • “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God” by Jonathan Edwards.
  • “Traveling Mercies” by Anne Lamott.
  • “A nation among nations” by Thomas H. Bender.
  • “Guns, Germs, and Steel” by Jared Diamond.
  • “The Price of Inequality” by Joseph Stiglitz.
  • “The Spirit Level” by Kate Pickett and Richard G. Wilkinson.
  • “The Status Syndrome” Michael Marmot.

Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics About Speeches

  • “I Have a Dream” by Martin Luther King, Jr.
  • “Letter from Birmingham Jail” by Martin Luther King, Jr.
  • Inaugural Address of President John F. Kennedy.
  • Emma Goldman’s Address to the Jury.
  • League of Nations Final Address by Thomas Woodrow Wilson.
  • “Every Man a King” by Huey Pierce Long.
  • “The Evil Empire” by Ronald Reagan.
  • “Mercy for Leopold and Loeb” by Clarence Seward Darrow.
  • “A Time for Choosing” by Ronald Reagan.
  • “The Struggle for Human Rights” by Anna Eleanor Roosevelt.

Unique Literature Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics

  • Rhetorical Devices in "Americanah" by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
  • Persuasive Techniques in "The Tell-Tale Heart" by Edgar Allan Poe
  • Rhetorical Analysis of "Beloved" by Toni Morrison
  • Rhetorical Strategies in "One Hundred Years of Solitude" by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Silence in "The Catcher in the Rye" by J.D. Salinger
  • Rhetorical Analysis of "The Handmaid's Tale" by Margaret Atwood
  • Rhetorical Devices in "Never Let Me Go" by Kazuo Ishiguro
  • Persuasive Techniques in "Norwegian Wood" by Haruki Murakami
  • Rhetorical Analysis of "American Gods" by Neil Gaiman
  • Rhetorical Strategies in "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest" by Ken Kesey

Current Rhetorical Analysis Topics

  • Social Media Influencers' Rhetoric on TikTok
  • COVID-19 Conspiracy Theories: Rhetorical Analysis
  • Environmental Justice Advocacy in Indigenous Speeches
  • Analyzing the "Cancel Culture" Debate Rhetoric
  • The Rhetorical Impact of Deepfake Technology
  • Mental Health Advocacy in Contemporary Novels
  • Veganism Rhetoric: Animal Rights Activism
  • Cybersecurity Rhetoric: Phishing Scam Persuasion
  • LGBTQ+ Rights Advocacy on College Campuses
  • Persuasive Techniques in Elon Musk's SpaceX Presentations

Rhetorical Essay Topics About Advertisements

  • Rhetorical Appeals in Nike's "Dream Crazy" Ad Campaign featuring Colin Kaepernick.
  • Analyzing Persuasive Techniques in Coca-Cola's "Share a Coke" Marketing Strategy.
  • Examining Dove's "Real Beauty" Advertising Campaign.
  • Deconstructing the Rhetorical Devices in Apple's "1984" Commercial.
  • Revealing Persuasive Techniques in Burger King's "Moldy Whopper" Campaign.
  • Rhetorical Strategies in Always' "Like a Girl" Advertising Campaign.
  • Analyzing the Rhetoric of Fear in Anti-Smoking Public Service Announcements.
  • Examining Budweiser's "Puppy Love" Super Bowl Commercial.
  • Rhetorical Mastery in Guinness' "Surfer" Ad
  • Unpacking the Rhetoric of Inclusivity in Target's "Take Pride" Advertising Campaign.

Visual Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics

  • Analyze Poe's Poetry, “The Raven.”
  • A favorite poem written by William Shakespeare.
  • Analysis of James Joyce’s Ulysses.
  • Martin Luther King Jr.’s last speech.
  • Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God.
  • Clifford's “The Ethics Of Belief” Summary And Analysis
  • “Easter Islands' End” By Jared Diamond
  • “Success Strategies” Analysis
  • Jonathan Edwards’ Sermons
  • “Guns, Germs, And Steel” By Jared Diamond

Funny Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics

  • Maximus’ Speech to Commodus from Gladiator 
  • “Inside the Mind of a Master Procrastinator” by Tim UrbanHealthcare 
  • Harvard Graduation Speech by Donovan Livington
  • Obama’s Final Farewell Speech 
  • Pink’s VMA acceptance speech
  • Do you love your family members or not?
  • Do all people grow old?
  • A rhetoric analysis of Coca-Cola’s logo colours
  • What is your opinion of prequels and remakes?
  • Payment of college athletes

Comparative Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics

  • The lottery vs. the hunger games
  • Non-fictional novels and fictional novels
  • President Obama’s speech on inauguration compared to that of President Trump
  • Religious texts and their rhetorical composition.
  • Medicines vs. natural remedies
  • Social sciences vs. humanities
  • Economic upliftment vs. better standard of living
  • Compare movies based on Stephen King’s works versus his novels
  • Hurricanes vs. tornadoes
  • Football vs. basketball

Argumentative Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics

  • Political Speeches and Rhetoric
  • Advertising Influence on Consumer Behavior
  • Climate Change Communication
  • Social Media Persuasion
  • Rhetoric in Gun Control Debates
  • Fake News and Rhetorical Techniques
  • Environmental Activism and Rhetoric
  • Healthcare Debates and Persuasion
  • Rhetoric in Civil Rights Movements
  • Rhetorical Strategies in Literature

Interesting Rhetorical Analysis Topics

Here are some more interesting rhetoric project ideas for you. Check out to find the topic for your next assignment:

Rhetorical Essay Topics About Songs 

  • Deciphering Rhetorical Devices in Bob Dylan's "Blowin' in the Wind".
  • Analyzing Persuasive Techniques in Beyoncé's "Formation".
  • The Rhetoric of Protest: Examining Kendrick Lamar's "Alright".
  • Unraveling the Rhetoric of Love in Adele's "Someone Like You".
  • Deconstructing Persuasive Techniques in Eminem's "Lose Yourself".
  • The Power of Pathos in Billie Eilish's "When the Party's Over".
  • Rhetorical Strategies in Michael Jackson's "Man in the Mirror".
  • Unveiling the Rhetoric of Rebellion in Rage Against the Machine's "Killing in the Name".
  • Analyzing Ethos and Logos in Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody".
  • The Rhetoric of Hope in John Lennon's "Imagine".

Rhetorical Essay Topics About Books

  • Identity Rhetoric in "The Namesake" by Jhumpa Lahiri
  • Persuasive Techniques in "The Remains of the Day"
  • Rhetorical Strategies in "White Teeth" by Zadie Smith
  • Unpacking Memory Rhetoric in "The Book Thief" by Markus Zusak
  • Persuasion in "The God of Small Things" by Arundhati Roy
  • Rhetorical Mastery in "One Hundred Years of Solitude" 
  • Analyzing Appeals in "Midnight's Children" by Salman Rushdie
  • Survival Rhetoric in "Life of Pi" by Yann Martel
  • Persuasive Techniques in "The Unbearable Lightness of Being" 
  • Love Rhetoric in "Wuthering Heights" by Emily Brontë

Rhetorical Essay Topics About Films

  • The Rhetorical Impact of Color in "The Grand Budapest Hotel".
  • Analyzing Persuasive Techniques in Quentin Tarantino's "Pulp Fiction".
  • Unveiling the Rhetoric of Identity in "Moonlight".
  • Deconstructing the Rhetoric of Power in "The Dark Knight".
  • The Rhetoric of Redemption in "The Shawshank Redemption".
  • Exploring Rhetorical Devices in Christopher Nolan's "Inception".
  • The Power of Symbolism in Guillermo del Toro's "Pan's Labyrinth".
  • Rhetorical Strategies in Denis Villeneuve's "Arrival".
  • Unraveling the Rhetoric of Society in Bong Joon-ho's "Parasite".
  • Analyzing Ethos and Logos in Martin Scorsese's "The Wolf of Wall Street".

Rhetorical Essay Topics About Television Shows

  • The Rhetoric of Morality in "Breaking Bad".
  • Analyzing Persuasive Techniques in "The Crown".
  • Unveiling the Rhetoric of Surveillance in "Black Mirror".
  • Deconstructing the Rhetoric of Identity in "Orphan Black".
  • The Rhetoric of Family Dynamics in "This Is Us".
  • Exploring Rhetorical Devices in "The Handmaid's Tale".
  • The Power of Satire in "Veep".
  • Rhetorical Strategies in "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel".
  • Unraveling the Rhetoric of Power in "House of Cards".
  • Analyzing Ethos and Logos in "The Good Place".

Rhetorical Essay Topics About News Stories

  • Crisis Rhetoric in Natural Disasters News.
  • Fear Tactics in Cybersecurity Reporting.
  • Refugee Crisis Media Persuasion.
  • Political Division in News Framing.
  • Health Rhetoric in Pandemic Coverage.
  • Climate Change News Analysis.
  • Framing Social Justice Movements in Media.
  • Technology Rhetoric in AI News.
  • Economic Inequality Reporting Strategies.
  • Justice Rhetoric in Crime News.

Rhetorical Essay Topics About Historical Events

  • Persuasion in Civil Rights Movement Rhetoric.
  • Propaganda in World War II Media.
  • Rhetoric of Revolution: Analyzing the French Revolution Speeches.
  • Unveiling Colonialism Rhetoric in Historical Accounts.
  • The Power of Speeches in the Suffragette Movement.
  • Analyzing Persuasive Techniques in the Vietnam War Protests.
  • Deconstructing Propaganda in Soviet Union Era Media.
  • The Rhetoric of Independence: Exploring Revolutionary War Documents.
  • Media Persuasion in the Cold War Era.
  • Rhetorical Analysis of Holocaust Testimonies.

Rhetorical Essay Topics About Websites

  • Unpacking Persuasive Techniques on E-commerce Sites.
  • Analyzing Rhetoric in Social Media Platforms.
  • The Rhetoric of Health Advice Websites.
  • Deconstructing Persuasion in Online Dating Platforms.
  • Exploring Environmental Advocacy Websites' Rhetoric.
  • Persuasive Techniques in Financial Advice Blogs.
  • The Rhetoric of Conspiracy Theory Websites.
  • Analyzing Persuasion in Travel Booking Websites.
  • Unveiling Rhetorical Strategies in Recipe Sharing Platforms.
  • Framing in News Aggregator Websites.

Rhetorical Essay Topics About Dictators

  • Analyzing Persuasion in Hitler's Speeches.
  • Propaganda Tactics of Mussolini's Regime.
  • Deconstructing Kim Jong-un's Rhetoric.
  • The Rhetoric of Stalin's Five-Year Plans.
  • Unveiling Mao Zedong's Cult of Personality.
  • The Power of Persuasion in Franco's Spain.
  • Analyzing Idi Amin's Authoritarian Rhetoric.
  • Propaganda Techniques of Saddam Hussein's Regime.
  • The Rhetoric of Pol Pot's Khmer Rouge.
  • Deconstructing Gaddafi's Revolutionary Speeches.

Rhetorical Essay Topics About Heroism

  • Examining Persuasive Techniques in Heroic Legends.
  • The Rhetoric of Courage in Everyday Heroes.
  • Deconstructing Superhero Mythos.
  • Unveiling the Rhetoric of Sacrifice in War Heroes.
  • Analyzing Persuasion in Historical Figures' Biographies.
  • The Power of Inspirational Speeches in Heroic Acts.
  • Rhetorical Strategies of Humanitarian Campaigns.
  • Exploring Persuasive Techniques in Folklore Heroes.
  • The Rhetoric of Bravery in Sports Legends.
  • Deconstructing Heroic Narratives in Literature.

Rhetorical Essay Topics About Racism

  • Analyzing Rhetoric in Anti-Racism Movements.
  • Deconstructing Racial Stereotypes in Media.
  • The Rhetoric of White Supremacy Groups.
  • Unveiling Implicit Bias in Everyday Language.
  • Exploring Rhetorical Strategies in Black Lives Matter Protests.
  • Persuasion in Political Discourse on Systemic Racism.
  • The Power of Narrative in Civil Rights Speeches.
  • Rhetorical Devices in Anti-Asian Hate Crime Reporting.
  • Framing Racism in Educational Curriculum Debates.
  • Analyzing Persuasive Techniques in Diversity Training Materials.

Rhetorical Essay Topics About Religion

  • Analyzing Rhetoric in Evangelical Preaching.
  • Deconstructing Persuasion in Islamic Sermons.
  • The Rhetoric of Conversion in Religious Texts.
  • Unveiling the Power of Testimonials in Faith Journeys.
  • Exploring Rhetorical Strategies in Buddhist Teachings.
  • Persuasive Techniques in New Age Spirituality Movements.
  • The Power of Rituals: A Rhetorical Analysis.
  • Rhetoric of Salvation in Christian Apologetics.
  • Framing Morality in Religious Political Speeches.
  • Analyzing Persuasive Techniques in Atheist Manifestos.

Rhetorical Essay Topics About Technology

  • The Rhetoric of Artificial Intelligence in Sci-Fi Films.
  • Deconstructing Persuasion in Tech Company Keynote Speeches.
  • Analyzing Rhetoric in Social Media Algorithms.
  • Unveiling Ethical Dilemmas in Biometric Data Collection.
  • Exploring Persuasive Techniques in Tech Product Reviews.
  • The Power of Digital Activism in Online Movements.
  • Rhetorical Strategies in Cybersecurity Awareness Campaigns.
  • Framing Privacy Issues in Smart Home Device Advertising.
  • Analyzing Persuasion in Virtual Reality Gaming Promotions.
  • Deconstructing Tech Start-up Pitch Presentations.

Rhetorical Essay Topics About Sports

  • Analyzing Persuasion in Sports Apparel Advertising.
  • Deconstructing Athlete Endorsement Speeches.
  • The Rhetoric of Team Spirit in Fan Chants.
  • Unveiling the Power of Sports Commentary.
  • Exploring Rhetorical Strategies in Olympic Opening Ceremonies.
  • Persuasive Techniques in Sports Betting Commercials.
  • The Rhetoric of Victory Speeches in Championship Moments.
  • Framing Athlete Activism in Sports News Coverage.
  • Analyzing Persuasion in Sports Nutrition Marketing.
  • Deconstructing Coach Pep Talks.

Rhetorical Essay Topics About Celebrities

  • Unveiling the Rhetoric of Influence in Celebrity TED Talks.
  • Analyzing Persuasive Techniques in George Washington Biographies.
  • Deconstructing Literary References in Celebrity Autobiographies.
  • Exploring Rhetorical Strategies in Winston Churchill's Speeches.
  • Framing Celebrity Activism in Social Media Campaigns.
  • Persuasive Techniques in Celebrity Endorsements.
  • The Rhetoric of Fame: Celebrity Interviews Analysis.
  • Analyzing Ethos and Logos in George Washington Quotes.
  • Unveiling the Power of Persuasion in Celebrity Political Speeches.
  • Deconstructing Celebrity Apology Speeches.

Poetry Topics for Rhetorical Analysis

  • The Rhetorical Devices in Sylvia Plath's "Daddy".
  • Analyzing Persuasive Techniques in Langston Hughes' "Harlem".
  • Deconstructing Rhetoric in Maya Angelou's "Still I Rise".
  • Exploring Ethos and Pathos in T.S. Eliot's "The Waste Land".
  • The Power of Symbolism in Emily Dickinson's "Because I could not stop for Death".
  • Unveiling the Rhetoric of Nature in Robert Frost's "The Road Not Taken".
  • Framing Racial Discourse in Claude McKay's "If We Must Die".
  • Analyzing Persuasion in Allen Ginsberg's "Howl".
  • The Rhetoric of Nature in Wordsworth's Romantic Poetry.
  • Exploring the Rhetoric of Love in Pablo Neruda's "Sonnet XVII".

How to Choose a Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topic? 

The following are some tips to consider while selecting the topics for your rhetorical analysis paper.

  • Pick Your Interest: Choose something you find intriguing! This will make researching and writing more enjoyable.
  • Consider the Text:  Can it be analyzed rhetorically? Speeches, ads,  poems, even movies can work!
  • Think Audience: Who is the text aimed at? How does it try to influence them?
  • Research Potential: Is there enough information available to analyze the text thoroughly?
  • Go Specific:  Don't just analyze a whole speech - focus on a specific technique used.

To conclude, writing a rhetoric paper can be challenging. It is suggested to take a professional’s help for your academic writing assignments and not risk your grades.

To get professional assistance, get help from the expert analytical essay writing service at MyPerfectWords.com . Our qualified writers draft 100% original content for the students and guarantee better grades. 

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Frequently Asked Questions

What makes an author's rhetoric effective.

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An author's rhetoric is effective when it persuades or influences the audience by employing persuasive techniques such as ethos (credibility) , pathos (emotion) , and logos (logic) . Effective rhetoric often involves clarity, coherence, compelling argumentation, and a deep understanding of the audience's values and beliefs.

What is a famous example of a rhetorical question?

A famous example of a rhetorical question is Martin Luther King Jr.'s question in his "I Have a Dream" speech: " And so even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream." This question is not meant to be answered but rather to provoke thought and reflection, emphasizing the persistence of King's dream despite challenges.

What are the 3 main parts of a rhetorical analysis?

The three main parts of a rhetorical analysis typically include:

  • Introduction: Providing context for the text or discourse being analyzed, including information about the author, the audience, the purpose, and the rhetorical situation.
  • Analysis: Examining the rhetorical strategies used by the author, such as appeals to ethos, pathos, and logos, as well as other rhetorical devices like imagery, tone, and structure.
  • Conclusion: Summarizing the key findings of the analysis and discussing the overall effectiveness of the author's rhetoric in achieving their purpose and influencing their audience.

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Rhetorical Analysis Essay

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How to Write a Rhetorical Analysis Essay–Examples & Template

argumentative rhetorical analysis essay topics

What is a Rhetorical Analysis Essay?

A rhetorical analysis essay is, as the name suggests, an analysis of someone else’s writing (or speech, or advert, or even cartoon) and how they use not only words but also rhetorical techniques to influence their audience in a certain way. A rhetorical analysis is less interested in what the author is saying and more in how they present it, what effect this has on their readers, whether they achieve their goals, and what approach they use to get there. 

Its structure is similar to that of most essays: An Introduction presents your thesis, a Body analyzes the text you have chosen, breaks it down into sections and explains how arguments have been constructed and how each part persuades, informs, or entertains the reader, and a Conclusion section sums up your evaluation. 

Note that your personal opinion on the matter is not relevant for your analysis and that you don’t state anywhere in your essay whether you agree or disagree with the stance the author takes.

In the following, we will define the key rhetorical concepts you need to write a good rhetorical analysis and give you some practical tips on where to start.

Key Rhetorical Concepts

Your goal when writing a rhetorical analysis is to think about and then carefully describe how the author has designed their text so that it has the intended effect on their audience. To do that, you need to consider a number of key rhetorical strategies: Rhetorical appeals (“Ethos”, “Logos”, and “Pathos”), context, as well as claims, supports, and warrants.

Ethos, Logos, and Pathos were introduced by Aristotle, way back in the 4th century BC, as the main ways in which language can be used to persuade an audience. They still represent the basis of any rhetorical analysis and are often referred to as the “rhetorical triangle”. 

These and other rhetorical techniques can all be combined to create the intended effect, and your job as the one analyzing a text is to break the writer’s arguments down and identify the concepts they are based on.

Rhetorical Appeals

Rhetorical appeal #1: ethos.

Ethos refers to the reputation or authority of the writer regarding the topic of their essay or speech and to how they use this to appeal to their audience. Just like we are more likely to buy a product from a brand or vendor we have confidence in than one we don’t know or have reason to distrust, Ethos-driven texts or speeches rely on the reputation of the author to persuade the reader or listener. When you analyze an essay, you should therefore look at how the writer establishes Ethos through rhetorical devices.

Does the author present themselves as an authority on their subject? If so, how? 

Do they highlight how impeccable their own behavior is to make a moral argument? 

Do they present themselves as an expert by listing their qualifications or experience to convince the reader of their opinion on something?

Rhetorical appeal #2: Pathos

The purpose of Pathos-driven rhetoric is to appeal to the reader’s emotions. A common example of pathos as a rhetorical means is adverts by charities that try to make you donate money to a “good cause”. To evoke the intended emotions in the reader, an author may use passionate language, tell personal stories, and employ vivid imagery so that the reader can imagine themselves in a certain situation and feel empathy with or anger towards others.

Rhetorical appeal #3: Logos

Logos, the “logical” appeal, uses reason to persuade. Reason and logic, supported by data, evidence, clearly defined methodology, and well-constructed arguments, are what most academic writing is based on. Emotions, those of the researcher/writer as well as those of the reader, should stay out of such academic texts, as should anyone’s reputation, beliefs, or personal opinions. 

Text and Context

To analyze a piece of writing, a speech, an advertisement, or even a satirical drawing, you need to look beyond the piece of communication and take the context in which it was created and/or published into account. 

Who is the person who wrote the text/drew the cartoon/designed the ad..? What audience are they trying to reach? Where was the piece published and what was happening there around that time? 

A political speech, for example, can be powerful even when read decades later, but the historical context surrounding it is an important aspect of the effect it was intended to have. 

Claims, Supports, and Warrants

To make any kind of argument, a writer needs to put forward specific claims, support them with data or evidence or even a moral or emotional appeal, and connect the dots logically so that the reader can follow along and agree with the points made.

The connections between statements, so-called “warrants”, follow logical reasoning but are not always clearly stated—the author simply assumes the reader understands the underlying logic, whether they present it “explicitly” or “implicitly”. Implicit warrants are commonly used in advertisements where seemingly happy people use certain products, wear certain clothes, accessories, or perfumes, or live certain lifestyles – with the connotation that, first, the product/perfume/lifestyle is what makes that person happy and, second, the reader wants to be as happy as the person in the ad. Some warrants are never clearly stated, and your job when writing a rhetorical analysis essay is therefore to identify them and bring them to light, to evaluate their validity, their effect on the reader, and the use of such means by the writer/creator. 

bust of plato the philosopher, rhetorical analysis essay

What are the Five Rhetorical Situations?

A “rhetorical situation” refers to the circumstance behind a text or other piece of communication that arises from a given context. It explains why a rhetorical piece was created, what its purpose is, and how it was constructed to achieve its aims.

Rhetorical situations can be classified into the following five categories:

Why was a text written or a cartoon drawn? Does it want to inform someone? Instruct a certain audience? Entertain a specific group of people? 
Who will read/see this (or read/saw it in the past) and be influenced by it/motivated to do something?
What type of writing/advertisement/communication is this?
What views does the piece represent? How do these views fit into the situation the writer was in at the time or the reader is in now?
What forms, means, and techniques does the piece use to communicate with its audience?

Asking such questions when you analyze a text will help you identify all the aspects that play a role in the effect it has on its audience, and will allow you to evaluate whether it achieved its aims or where it may have failed to do so.

Rhetorical Analysis Essay Outline

Analyzing someone else’s work can seem like a big task, but as with every assignment or writing endeavor, you can break it down into smaller, well-defined steps that give you a practical structure to follow. 

To give you an example of how the different parts of your text may look when it’s finished, we will provide you with some excerpts from this rhetorical analysis essay example (which even includes helpful comments) published on the Online Writing Lab website of Excelsior University in Albany, NY. The text that this essay analyzes is this article on why one should or shouldn’t buy an Ipad. If you want more examples so that you can build your own rhetorical analysis template, have a look at this essay on Nabokov’s Lolita and the one provided here about the “Shitty First Drafts” chapter of Anne Lamott’s writing instruction book “Bird by Bird”.

Analyzing the Text

When writing a rhetorical analysis, you don’t choose the concepts or key points you think are relevant or want to address. Rather, you carefully read the text several times asking yourself questions like those listed in the last section on rhetorical situations to identify how the text “works” and how it was written to achieve that effect.

Start with focusing on the author : What do you think was their purpose for writing the text? Do they make one principal claim and then elaborate on that? Or do they discuss different topics? 

Then look at what audience they are talking to: Do they want to make a group of people take some action? Vote for someone? Donate money to a good cause? Who are these people? Is the text reaching this specific audience? Why or why not?

What tone is the author using to address their audience? Are they trying to evoke sympathy? Stir up anger? Are they writing from a personal perspective? Are they painting themselves as an authority on the topic? Are they using academic or informal language?

How does the author support their claims ? What kind of evidence are they presenting? Are they providing explicit or implicit warrants? Are these warrants valid or problematic? Is the provided evidence convincing?  

Asking yourself such questions will help you identify what rhetorical devices a text uses and how well they are put together to achieve a certain aim. Remember, your own opinion and whether you agree with the author are not the point of a rhetorical analysis essay – your task is simply to take the text apart and evaluate it.

If you are still confused about how to write a rhetorical analysis essay, just follow the steps outlined below to write the different parts of your rhetorical analysis: As every other essay, it consists of an Introduction , a Body (the actual analysis), and a Conclusion .

Rhetorical Analysis Introduction

The Introduction section briefly presents the topic of the essay you are analyzing, the author, their main claims, a short summary of the work by you, and your thesis statement . 

Tell the reader what the text you are going to analyze represents (e.g., historically) or why it is relevant (e.g., because it has become some kind of reference for how something is done). Describe what the author claims, asserts, or implies and what techniques they use to make their argument and persuade their audience. Finish off with your thesis statement that prepares the reader for what you are going to present in the next section – do you think that the author’s assumptions/claims/arguments were presented in a logical/appealing/powerful way and reached their audience as intended?

Have a look at an excerpt from the sample essay linked above to see what a rhetorical analysis introduction can look like. See how it introduces the author and article , the context in which it originally appeared , the main claims the author makes , and how this first paragraph ends in a clear thesis statement that the essay will then elaborate on in the following Body section:

Cory Doctorow ’s article on BoingBoing is an older review of the iPad , one of Apple’s most famous products. At the time of this article, however, the iPad was simply the latest Apple product to hit the market and was not yet so popular. Doctorow’s entire career has been entrenched in and around technology. He got his start as a CD-ROM programmer and is now a successful blogger and author. He is currently the co-editor of the BoingBoing blog on which this article was posted. One of his main points in this article comes from Doctorow’s passionate advocacy of free digital media sharing. He argues that the iPad is just another way for established technology companies to control our technological freedom and creativity . In “ Why I Won’t Buy an iPad (and Think You Shouldn’t, Either) ” published on Boing Boing in April of 2010, Cory Doctorow successfully uses his experience with technology, facts about the company Apple, and appeals to consumer needs to convince potential iPad buyers that Apple and its products, specifically the iPad, limit the digital rights of those who use them by controlling and mainstreaming the content that can be used and created on the device . 

Doing the Rhetorical Analysis

The main part of your analysis is the Body , where you dissect the text in detail. Explain what methods the author uses to inform, entertain, and/or persuade the audience. Use Aristotle’s rhetorical triangle and the other key concepts we introduced above. Use quotations from the essay to demonstrate what you mean. Work out why the writer used a certain approach and evaluate (and again, demonstrate using the text itself) how successful they were. Evaluate the effect of each rhetorical technique you identify on the audience and judge whether the effect is in line with the author’s intentions.

To make it easy for the reader to follow your thought process, divide this part of your essay into paragraphs that each focus on one strategy or one concept , and make sure they are all necessary and contribute to the development of your argument(s).

One paragraph of this section of your essay could, for example, look like this:

One example of Doctorow’s position is his comparison of Apple’s iStore to Wal-Mart. This is an appeal to the consumer’s logic—or an appeal to logos. Doctorow wants the reader to take his comparison and consider how an all-powerful corporation like the iStore will affect them. An iPad will only allow for apps and programs purchased through the iStore to be run on it; therefore, a customer must not only purchase an iPad but also any programs he or she wishes to use. Customers cannot create their own programs or modify the hardware in any way. 

As you can see, the author of this sample essay identifies and then explains to the reader how Doctorow uses the concept of Logos to appeal to his readers – not just by pointing out that he does it but by dissecting how it is done.

Rhetorical Analysis Conclusion

The conclusion section of your analysis should restate your main arguments and emphasize once more whether you think the author achieved their goal. Note that this is not the place to introduce new information—only rely on the points you have discussed in the body of your essay. End with a statement that sums up the impact the text has on its audience and maybe society as a whole:

Overall, Doctorow makes a good argument about why there are potentially many better things to drop a great deal of money on instead of the iPad. He gives some valuable information and facts that consumers should take into consideration before going out to purchase the new device. He clearly uses rhetorical tools to help make his case, and, overall, he is effective as a writer, even if, ultimately, he was ineffective in convincing the world not to buy an iPad . 

Frequently Asked Questions about Rhetorical Analysis Essays 

What is a rhetorical analysis essay.

A rhetorical analysis dissects a text or another piece of communication to work out and explain how it impacts its audience, how successfully it achieves its aims, and what rhetorical devices it uses to do that. 

While argumentative essays usually take a stance on a certain topic and argue for it, a rhetorical analysis identifies how someone else constructs their arguments and supports their claims.

What is the correct rhetorical analysis essay format?

Like most other essays, a rhetorical analysis contains an Introduction that presents the thesis statement, a Body that analyzes the piece of communication, explains how arguments have been constructed, and illustrates how each part persuades, informs, or entertains the reader, and a Conclusion section that summarizes the results of the analysis. 

What is the “rhetorical triangle”?

The rhetorical triangle was introduced by Aristotle as the main ways in which language can be used to persuade an audience: Logos appeals to the audience’s reason, Ethos to the writer’s status or authority, and Pathos to the reader’s emotions. Logos, Ethos, and Pathos can all be combined to create the intended effect, and your job as the one analyzing a text is to break the writer’s arguments down and identify what specific concepts each is based on.

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What Is a Rhetorical Analysis and How to Write a Great One

Helly Douglas

Helly Douglas

Cover image for article

Do you have to write a rhetorical analysis essay? Fear not! We’re here to explain exactly what rhetorical analysis means, how you should structure your essay, and give you some essential “dos and don’ts.”

What is a Rhetorical Analysis Essay?

How do you write a rhetorical analysis, what are the three rhetorical strategies, what are the five rhetorical situations, how to plan a rhetorical analysis essay, creating a rhetorical analysis essay, examples of great rhetorical analysis essays, final thoughts.

A rhetorical analysis essay studies how writers and speakers have used words to influence their audience. Think less about the words the author has used and more about the techniques they employ, their goals, and the effect this has on the audience.

Image showing definitions

In your analysis essay, you break a piece of text (including cartoons, adverts, and speeches) into sections and explain how each part works to persuade, inform, or entertain. You’ll explore the effectiveness of the techniques used, how the argument has been constructed, and give examples from the text.

A strong rhetorical analysis evaluates a text rather than just describes the techniques used. You don’t include whether you personally agree or disagree with the argument.

Structure a rhetorical analysis in the same way as most other types of academic essays . You’ll have an introduction to present your thesis, a main body where you analyze the text, which then leads to a conclusion.

Think about how the writer (also known as a rhetor) considers the situation that frames their communication:

  • Topic: the overall purpose of the rhetoric
  • Audience: this includes primary, secondary, and tertiary audiences
  • Purpose: there are often more than one to consider
  • Context and culture: the wider situation within which the rhetoric is placed

Back in the 4th century BC, Aristotle was talking about how language can be used as a means of persuasion. He described three principal forms —Ethos, Logos, and Pathos—often referred to as the Rhetorical Triangle . These persuasive techniques are still used today.

Image showing rhetorical strategies

Rhetorical Strategy 1: Ethos

Are you more likely to buy a car from an established company that’s been an important part of your community for 50 years, or someone new who just started their business?

Reputation matters. Ethos explores how the character, disposition, and fundamental values of the author create appeal, along with their expertise and knowledge in the subject area.

Aristotle breaks ethos down into three further categories:

  • Phronesis: skills and practical wisdom
  • Arete: virtue
  • Eunoia: goodwill towards the audience

Ethos-driven speeches and text rely on the reputation of the author. In your analysis, you can look at how the writer establishes ethos through both direct and indirect means.

Rhetorical Strategy 2: Pathos

Pathos-driven rhetoric hooks into our emotions. You’ll often see it used in advertisements, particularly by charities wanting you to donate money towards an appeal.

Common use of pathos includes:

  • Vivid description so the reader can imagine themselves in the situation
  • Personal stories to create feelings of empathy
  • Emotional vocabulary that evokes a response

By using pathos to make the audience feel a particular emotion, the author can persuade them that the argument they’re making is compelling.

Rhetorical Strategy 3: Logos

Logos uses logic or reason. It’s commonly used in academic writing when arguments are created using evidence and reasoning rather than an emotional response. It’s constructed in a step-by-step approach that builds methodically to create a powerful effect upon the reader.

Rhetoric can use any one of these three techniques, but effective arguments often appeal to all three elements.

The rhetorical situation explains the circumstances behind and around a piece of rhetoric. It helps you think about why a text exists, its purpose, and how it’s carried out.

Image showing 5 rhetorical situations

The rhetorical situations are:

  • 1) Purpose: Why is this being written? (It could be trying to inform, persuade, instruct, or entertain.)
  • 2) Audience: Which groups or individuals will read and take action (or have done so in the past)?
  • 3) Genre: What type of writing is this?
  • 4) Stance: What is the tone of the text? What position are they taking?
  • 5) Media/Visuals: What means of communication are used?

Understanding and analyzing the rhetorical situation is essential for building a strong essay. Also think about any rhetoric restraints on the text, such as beliefs, attitudes, and traditions that could affect the author's decisions.

Before leaping into your essay, it’s worth taking time to explore the text at a deeper level and considering the rhetorical situations we looked at before. Throw away your assumptions and use these simple questions to help you unpick how and why the text is having an effect on the audience.

Image showing what to consider when planning a rhetorical essay

1: What is the Rhetorical Situation?

  • Why is there a need or opportunity for persuasion?
  • How do words and references help you identify the time and location?
  • What are the rhetoric restraints?
  • What historical occasions would lead to this text being created?

2: Who is the Author?

  • How do they position themselves as an expert worth listening to?
  • What is their ethos?
  • Do they have a reputation that gives them authority?
  • What is their intention?
  • What values or customs do they have?

3: Who is it Written For?

  • Who is the intended audience?
  • How is this appealing to this particular audience?
  • Who are the possible secondary and tertiary audiences?

4: What is the Central Idea?

  • Can you summarize the key point of this rhetoric?
  • What arguments are used?
  • How has it developed a line of reasoning?

5: How is it Structured?

  • What structure is used?
  • How is the content arranged within the structure?

6: What Form is Used?

  • Does this follow a specific literary genre?
  • What type of style and tone is used, and why is this?
  • Does the form used complement the content?
  • What effect could this form have on the audience?

7: Is the Rhetoric Effective?

  • Does the content fulfil the author’s intentions?
  • Does the message effectively fit the audience, location, and time period?

Once you’ve fully explored the text, you’ll have a better understanding of the impact it’s having on the audience and feel more confident about writing your essay outline.

A great essay starts with an interesting topic. Choose carefully so you’re personally invested in the subject and familiar with it rather than just following trending topics. There are lots of great ideas on this blog post by My Perfect Words if you need some inspiration. Take some time to do background research to ensure your topic offers good analysis opportunities.

Image showing considerations for a rhetorical analysis topic

Remember to check the information given to you by your professor so you follow their preferred style guidelines. This outline example gives you a general idea of a format to follow, but there will likely be specific requests about layout and content in your course handbook. It’s always worth asking your institution if you’re unsure.

Make notes for each section of your essay before you write. This makes it easy for you to write a well-structured text that flows naturally to a conclusion. You will develop each note into a paragraph. Look at this example by College Essay for useful ideas about the structure.

Image showing how to structure an essay

1: Introduction

This is a short, informative section that shows you understand the purpose of the text. It tempts the reader to find out more by mentioning what will come in the main body of your essay.

  • Name the author of the text and the title of their work followed by the date in parentheses
  • Use a verb to describe what the author does, e.g. “implies,” “asserts,” or “claims”
  • Briefly summarize the text in your own words
  • Mention the persuasive techniques used by the rhetor and its effect

Create a thesis statement to come at the end of your introduction.

After your introduction, move on to your critical analysis. This is the principal part of your essay.

  • Explain the methods used by the author to inform, entertain, and/or persuade the audience using Aristotle's rhetorical triangle
  • Use quotations to prove the statements you make
  • Explain why the writer used this approach and how successful it is
  • Consider how it makes the audience feel and react

Make each strategy a new paragraph rather than cramming them together, and always use proper citations. Check back to your course handbook if you’re unsure which citation style is preferred.

3: Conclusion

Your conclusion should summarize the points you’ve made in the main body of your essay. While you will draw the points together, this is not the place to introduce new information you’ve not previously mentioned.

Use your last sentence to share a powerful concluding statement that talks about the impact the text has on the audience(s) and wider society. How have its strategies helped to shape history?

Before You Submit

Poor spelling and grammatical errors ruin a great essay. Use ProWritingAid to check through your finished essay before you submit. It will pick up all the minor errors you’ve missed and help you give your essay a final polish. Look at this useful ProWritingAid webinar for further ideas to help you significantly improve your essays. Sign up for a free trial today and start editing your essays!

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You’ll find countless examples of rhetorical analysis online, but they range widely in quality. Your institution may have example essays they can share with you to show you exactly what they’re looking for.

The following links should give you a good starting point if you’re looking for ideas:

Pearson Canada has a range of good examples. Look at how embedded quotations are used to prove the points being made. The end questions help you unpick how successful each essay is.

Excelsior College has an excellent sample essay complete with useful comments highlighting the techniques used.

Brighton Online has a selection of interesting essays to look at. In this specific example, consider how wider reading has deepened the exploration of the text.

Image showing tips when reading a sample essay

Writing a rhetorical analysis essay can seem daunting, but spending significant time deeply analyzing the text before you write will make it far more achievable and result in a better-quality essay overall.

It can take some time to write a good essay. Aim to complete it well before the deadline so you don’t feel rushed. Use ProWritingAid’s comprehensive checks to find any errors and make changes to improve readability. Then you’ll be ready to submit your finished essay, knowing it’s as good as you can possibly make it.

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Helly Douglas is a UK writer and teacher, specialising in education, children, and parenting. She loves making the complex seem simple through blogs, articles, and curriculum content. You can check out her work at hellydouglas.com or connect on Twitter @hellydouglas. When she’s not writing, you will find her in a classroom, being a mum or battling against the wilderness of her garden—the garden is winning!

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160 Good Argumentative Essay Topics for Students in 2024

April 3, 2024

The skill of writing an excellent argumentative essay is a crucial one for every high school or college student to master. In sum, argumentative essays teach students how to organize their thoughts logically and present them in a convincing way. This skill is helpful not only for those pursuing degrees in law , international relations , or public policy , but for any student who wishes to develop their critical thinking faculties. In this article, we’ll cover what makes a good argument essay and offer several argumentative essay topics for high school and college students. Let’s begin!

What is an Argumentative Essay?

An argumentative essay is an essay that uses research to present a reasoned argument on a particular subject . As with the persuasive essay , the purpose of an argumentative essay is to sway the reader to the writer’s position. However, a strong persuasive essay makes its point through diligent research and emotion while a strong argumentative essay should be based solely on facts, not feelings.

Moreover, each fact should be supported by clear evidence from credible sources . Furthermore, a good argumentative essay will have an easy-to-follow structure. When organizing your argumentative essay, use this format as a guide:

  • Introduction
  • Supporting body paragraphs
  • Paragraph(s) addressing common counterarguments

Argumentative Essay Format

In the introduction , the writer presents their position and thesis statement —a sentence that summarizes the paper’s main points. The body paragraphs then draw upon supporting evidence to back up this initial statement, with each paragraph focusing on its own point. The length of your paper will determine the amount of examples you need. In general, you’ll likely need at least two to three. Additionally, your examples should be as detailed as possible, citing specific research, case studies, statistics, or anecdotes.

In the counterargument paragraph , the writer acknowledges and refutes opposing viewpoints. Finally, in the conclusion , the writer restates the main argument made in the thesis statement and summarizes the points of the essay. Additionally, the conclusion may offer a final proposal to persuade the reader of the essay’s position.

How to Write an Effective Argumentative Essay, Step by Step

  • Choose your topic. Use the list below to help you pick a topic. Ideally, a good argumentative essay topic will be meaningful to you—writing is always stronger when you are interested in the subject matter. In addition, the topic should be complex with plenty of “pro” and “con” arguments. Avoid choosing a topic that is either widely accepted as fact or too narrow. For example, “Is the earth round?” would not be a solid choice.
  • Research. Use the library, the web, and any other resources to gather information about your argumentative essay topic. Research widely but smartly. As you go, take organized notes, marking the source of every quote and where it may fit in the scheme of your larger essay. Moreover, remember to look for (and research) possible counterarguments.
  • Outline . Using the argument essay format above, create an outline for your essay. Then, brainstorm a thesis statement covering your argument’s main points, and begin to put your examples in order, focusing on logical flow. It’s often best to place your strongest example last.
  • Write . Draw on your research and outline to create a first draft. Remember, your first draft doesn’t need to be perfect. (As Voltaire says, “Perfect is the enemy of good.”) Accordingly, just focus on getting the words down on paper.
  • Does my thesis statement need to be adjusted?
  • Which examples feel strongest? Weakest?
  • Do the transitions flow smoothly?
  • Do I have a strong opening paragraph?
  • Does the conclusion reinforce my argument?

Tips for Revising an Argument Essay

Evaluating your own work can be difficult, so you might consider the following strategies:

  • Read your work aloud to yourself.
  • Record yourself reading your paper, and listen to the recording.
  • Reverse outline your paper. Firstly, next to each paragraph, write a short summary of that paragraph’s main points/idea. Then, read through your reverse outline. Does it have a logical flow? If not, where should you adjust?
  • Print out your paper and cut it into paragraphs. What happens when you rearrange the paragraphs?

Good Argumentative Essay Topics for Middle School, High School, and College Students

Family argumentative essay topics.

  • Should the government provide financial incentives for families to have children to address the declining birth rate?
  • Should we require parents to provide their children with a certain level of nutrition and physical activity to prevent childhood obesity?
  • Should parents implement limits on how much time their children spend playing video games?
  • Should cell phones be banned from family/holiday gatherings?
  • Should we hold parents legally responsible for their children’s actions?
  • Should children have the right to sue their parents for neglect?
  • Should parents have the right to choose their child’s religion?
  • Are spanking and other forms of physical punishment an effective method of discipline?
  • Should courts allow children to choose where they live in cases of divorce?
  • Should parents have the right to monitor teens’ activity on social media?
  • Should parents control their child’s medical treatment, even if it goes against the child’s wishes?
  • Should parents be allowed to post pictures of their children on social media without their consent?
  • Should fathers have a legal say in whether their partners do or do not receive an abortion?
  • Can television have positive developmental benefits on children?
  • Should the driving age be raised to prevent teen car accidents?
  • Should adult children be legally required to care for their aging parents?

Education Argument Essay Topics

  • Should schools ban the use of technology like ChatGPT?
  • Are zoos unethical, or necessary for conservation and education?
  • To what degree should we hold parents responsible in the event of a school shooting?
  • Should schools offer students a set number of mental health days?
  • Should school science curriculums offer a course on combating climate change?
  • Should public libraries be allowed to ban certain books? If so, what types?
  • What role, if any, should prayer play in public schools?
  • Should schools push to abolish homework?
  • Are gifted and talented programs in schools more harmful than beneficial due to their exclusionary nature?
  • Should universities do away with Greek life?
  • Should schools remove artwork, such as murals, that some perceive as offensive?
  • Should the government grant parents the right to choose alternative education options for their children and use taxpayer funds to support these options?
  • Is homeschooling better than traditional schooling for children’s academic and social development?
  • Should we require schools to teach sex education to reduce teen pregnancy rates?
  • Should we require schools to provide sex education that includes information about both homosexual and heterosexual relationships?
  • Should colleges use affirmative action and other race-conscious policies to address diversity on campus?
  • Should public schools remove the line “under God” from the Pledge of Allegiance?
  • Should college admissions officers be allowed to look at students’ social media accounts?
  • Should schools abolish their dress codes, many of which unfairly target girls, LGBTQ students, and students of color?
  • Should schools be required to stock free period products in bathrooms?
  • Should legacy students receive preferential treatment during the college admissions process?
  • Are school “voluntourism” trips ethical?

Government Argumentative Essay Topics

  • Should the U.S. decriminalize prostitution?
  • Should the U.S. issue migration visas to all eligible applicants?
  • Should the federal government cancel all student loan debt?
  • Should we lower the minimum voting age? If so, to what?
  • Should the federal government abolish all laws penalizing drug production and use?
  • Should the U.S. use its military power to deter a Chinese invasion of Taiwan?
  • Should the U.S. supply Ukraine with further military intelligence and supplies?
  • Should the North and South of the U.S. split up into two regions?
  • Should Americans hold up nationalism as a critical value?
  • Should we permit Supreme Court justices to hold their positions indefinitely?
  • Should Supreme Court justices be democratically elected?
  • Is the Electoral College still a productive approach to electing the U.S. president?
  • Should the U.S. implement a national firearm registry?
  • Is it ethical for countries like China and Israel to mandate compulsory military service for all citizens?
  • Should the U.S. government implement a ranked-choice voting system?
  • Should institutions that benefited from slavery be required to provide reparations?
  • Based on the 1619 project, should history classes change how they teach about the founding of the U.S.?
  • Should term limits be imposed on Senators and Representatives? If so, how long?
  • Should women be allowed into special forces units?
  • Should the federal government implement stronger, universal firearm licensing laws?
  • Do public sex offender registries help prevent future sex crimes?
  • Should the government be allowed to regulate family size?
  • Should all adults legally be considered mandated reporters?
  • Should the government fund public universities to make higher education more accessible to low-income students?
  • Should the government fund universal preschool to improve children’s readiness for kindergarten?

Health/Bioethics Argumentative Essay Topics

  • Should the U.S. government offer its own healthcare plan?
  • In the case of highly infectious pandemics, should we focus on individual freedoms or public safety when implementing policies to control the spread?
  • Should we legally require parents to vaccinate their children to protect public health?
  • Is it ethical for parents to use genetic engineering to create “designer babies” with specific physical and intellectual traits?
  • Should the government fund research on embryonic stem cells for medical treatments?
  • Should the government legalize assisted suicide for terminally ill patients?
  • Should organ donation be mandatory?
  • Is cloning animals ethical?
  • Should cancer screenings start earlier? If so, what age?
  • Is surrogacy ethical?
  • Should birth control require a prescription?
  • Should minors have access to emergency contraception?
  • Should hospitals be for-profit or nonprofit institutions?

Good Argumentative Essay Topics — Continued

Social media argumentative essay topics.

  • Should the federal government increase its efforts to minimize the negative impact of social media?
  • Do social media and smartphones strengthen one’s relationships?
  • Should antitrust regulators take action to limit the size of big tech companies?
  • Should social media platforms ban political advertisements?
  • Should the federal government hold social media companies accountable for instances of hate speech discovered on their platforms?
  • Do apps such as TikTok and Instagram ultimately worsen the mental well-being of teenagers?
  • Should governments oversee how social media platforms manage their users’ data?
  • Should social media platforms like Facebook enforce a minimum age requirement for users?
  • Should social media companies be held responsible for cases of cyberbullying?
  • Should the United States ban TikTok?
  • Is social media harmful to children?
  • Should employers screen applicants’ social media accounts during the hiring process?

Religion Argument Essay Topics

  • Should religious institutions be tax-exempt?
  • Should religious symbols such as the hijab or crucifix be allowed in public spaces?
  • Should religious freedoms be protected, even when they conflict with secular laws?
  • Should the government regulate religious practices?
  • Should we allow churches to engage in political activities?
  • Religion: a force for good or evil in the world?
  • Should the government provide funding for religious schools?
  • Is it ethical for healthcare providers to deny abortions based on religious beliefs?
  • Should religious organizations be allowed to discriminate in their hiring practices?
  • Should we allow people to opt out of medical treatments based on their religious beliefs?
  • Should the U.S. government hold religious organizations accountable for cases of sexual abuse within their community?
  • Should religious beliefs be exempt from anti-discrimination laws?
  • Should religious individuals be allowed to refuse services to others based on their beliefs or lifestyles? (As in this famous case .)
  • Should the US ban religion-based federal holidays?
  • Should public schools be allowed to teach children about religious holidays?

Science Argument Essay Topics

  • Would the world be safer if we eliminated nuclear weapons?
  • Should scientists bring back extinct animals? If so, which ones?
  • Should we hold companies fiscally responsible for their carbon footprint?
  • Should we ban pesticides in favor of organic farming methods?
  • Should the federal government ban all fossil fuels, despite the potential economic impact on specific industries and communities?
  • What renewable energy source should the U.S. invest more money in?
  • Should the FDA outlaw GMOs?
  • Should we worry about artificial intelligence surpassing human intelligence?
  • Should the alternative medicine industry be more stringently regulated?
  • Is colonizing Mars a viable option?
  • Is the animal testing worth the potential to save human lives?

Sports Argument Essay Topics

  • Should colleges compensate student-athletes?
  • How should sports teams and leagues address the gender pay gap?
  • Should youth sports teams do away with scorekeeping?
  • Should we ban aggressive contact sports like boxing and MMA?
  • Should professional sports associations mandate that athletes stand during the national anthem?
  • Should high schools require their student-athletes to maintain a certain GPA?
  • Should transgender athletes compete in sports according to their gender identity?
  • Should schools ban football due to the inherent danger it poses to players?
  • Should performance-enhancing drugs be allowed in sports?
  • Do participation trophies foster entitlement and unrealistic expectations?
  • Should sports teams be divided by gender?
  • Should professional athletes be allowed to compete in the Olympics?
  • Should women be allowed on NFL teams?

Technology Argumentative Essay Topics

  • Should sites like DALL-E compensate the artists whose work it was trained on?
  • Should the federal government make human exploration of space a more significant priority?
  • Is it ethical for the government to use surveillance technology to monitor citizens?
  • Should websites require proof of age from their users? If so, what age?
  • Should we consider A.I.-generated images and text pieces of art?
  • Does the use of facial recognition technology violate individuals’ privacy?
  • Is online learning as effective as in-person learning?
  • Does computing harm the environment?
  • Should buying, sharing, and selling collected personal data be illegal?
  • Are electric cars really better for the environment?
  • Should car companies be held responsible for self-driving car accidents?
  • Should private jets be banned?
  • Do violent video games contribute to real-life violence?

Business Argument Essay Topics

  • Should the U.S. government phase out the use of paper money in favor of a fully digital currency system?
  • Should the federal government abolish its patent and copyright laws?
  • Should we replace the Federal Reserve with free-market institutions?
  • Is free-market ideology responsible for the U.S. economy’s poor performance over the past decade?
  • Will cryptocurrencies overtake natural resources like gold and silver?
  • Is capitalism the best economic system? What system would be better?
  • Should the U.S. government enact a universal basic income?
  • Should we require companies to provide paid parental leave to their employees?
  • Should the government raise the minimum wage? If so, to what?
  • Should antitrust regulators break up large companies to promote competition?
  • Is it ethical for companies to prioritize profits over social responsibility?
  • Should gig-economy workers like Uber and Lyft drivers be considered employees or independent contractors?
  • Should the federal government regulate the gig economy to ensure fair treatment of workers?
  • Should the government require companies to disclose the environmental impact of their products?
  • Should companies be allowed to fire employees based on political views or activities?
  • Should tipping practices be phased out?
  • Should employees who choose not to have children be given the same amount of paid leave as parents?
  • Should MLMs (multi-level marketing companies) be illegal?
  • Should employers be allowed to factor tattoos and personal appearance into hiring decisions?

In Conclusion – Argument Essay Topics

Using the tips above, you can effectively structure and pen a compelling argumentative essay that will wow your instructor and classmates. Remember to craft a thesis statement that offers readers a roadmap through your essay, draw on your sources wisely to back up any claims, and read through your paper several times before it’s due to catch any last-minute proofreading errors. With time, diligence, and patience, your essay will be the most outstanding assignment you’ve ever turned in…until the next one rolls around.

Looking for more fresh and engaging topics for use in the classroom? You might consider checking out the following:

  • 125 Good Debate Topics for High School Students
  • 150 Good Persuasive Speech Topics
  • 7 Best Places to Study
  • Guide to the IB Extended Essay
  • How to Write the AP Lang Rhetorical Analysis Essay
  • AP Lit Reading List
  • How to Write the AP Lang Synthesis Essay
  • 49 Most Interesting Biology Research Topics
  • High School Success

Lauren Green

With a Bachelor of Arts in Creative Writing from Columbia University and an MFA in Fiction from the Michener Center for Writers at the University of Texas at Austin, Lauren has been a professional writer for over a decade. She is the author of the chapbook  A Great Dark House  (Poetry Society of America, 2023) and a forthcoming novel (Viking/Penguin).

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100 Good Rhetorical Analysis Topics for Fiction, Non-Fiction, Speeches, Ads, and More

A rhetorical analysis is a type of paper that dissects the means by which the message was conveyed in a text, speech, or another medium. Rhetoric topics for an essay or research paper often focus on non-fiction writing and public speeches, which are easy to analyze through the lens of the rhetorical triangle, message, speaker vs. audience dynamic, artistic and inartistic proofs, etc. However, more broadly, rhetoric topics for essays can explore a variety of media: print advertisements, motion pictures, songs, and poetry.

Whether you look for inspirational rhetorical analysis topics for essay, you can make almost anything your object.

The structure of the rhetorical analysis is similar to other academic papers. In its most basic form, the analysis can be presented as a 5-paragraph formation familiar to every essay writer :

  • Introduction
  • Main body :
  • Description : What is the text about? Who and when created it? How does it look like? What are the main rhetorical appeals?
  • Analysis : How does the author convey rhetorical appeals? What is omitted and why? Did the perception of this text change over time?
  • Evaluation : How effective is this text in conveying the message? Is it persuasive? is it ethical? What can be changed about it to make the message more powerful and clear?

There are several key points to concentrate your analysis on:

  • Appeals : ways in which the author persuades the audience. There are three main appeals in classical rhetoric (also referred to as "rhetorical triangle" or "Aristotelian appeals" ):
  • Logos – logical arguments, appeals to reason.
  • Ethos – moral arguments, appeals to the sense of right and wrong.
  • Pathos – emotional arguments, appeals to feelings (passion, anger, sympathy, etc.)
  • Rhetorical situation : main elements of the communication and relationships among them.
  • Audience – readers, listeners, viewers, either real, invoked, or imagined.
  • Author – speaker, writer, artist, director; the creator of the text.
  • Purpose – the reason why the text was created and its intended effect.
  • Medium – how the text was conveyed: printed text, images, sounds, performance, multimedia (digital format incorporating text, video, and sound, performance, etc.)
  • Context : time, place, public sentiment, and discourse surrounding the text at the moment of its creation and delivery.
  • Claim – the main opinion, belief, or idea that the author sets out to communicate and prove.
  • Support – evidence that backs up the claim (facts, statistics, the expert takes, emotional appeals, etc.)
  • Warrant – values, beliefs, and experiences that the author assumes to share with the audience. Warrant creates a connection between the claim and the support.

James Joyce's Ulysses and a 20-second TikTok alike can be broken down into these components and analyzed, so the possibilities for rhetorical analysis are pretty much endless. To help you choose, we have put together this list of 100 rhetorical analysis paper topics divided into five major categories:

  • Personal rhetorical analysis topics.
  • Speeches and political discourse topics.
  • Advertisements and brand voice topics.
  • Non-fiction rhetorical analysis topics.
  • Fiction rhetorical analysis topics.

While you are looking for good topics to write a rhetorical analysis on, you may notice that some of them are linked to samples from our free library. You are welcome to read any number of those to familiarize yourself with the format. See how rhetorical analysis principles and tools were used by other students and applied to different objects. Happy learning!

Personal Rhetorical Analysis Topics List

This section contains topics for self-analysis or just things that might fascinate you personally: your diary, a family heirloom, favorite song. If you'd rather stay on familiar territory to dip your toes into the rhetoric analysis, choose one of these:

  • Rhetoric in Everyday Life Essay
  • My Writing Toolbox: The Rhetorical Triangle
  • The Rhetorical Triangle In Discourse Analysis
  • Rhetorical Self-Analysis of a Descriptive Writing Piece
  • Rhetorical Self-Analysis and Reflection on Your Academic Paper
  • Rhetorical Analysis of Your Business Writing
  • Describe a Process of Applying Rhetorical Analysis
  • How Did Rhetorical Analysis Influence Your Writing Style?
  • Perform Rhetorical Analysis of Your Peers Essays (Two of Your Choosing)
  • Perform Rhetorical Analysis of Your Texting Style
  • Perform Rhetorical Analysis of Your Personal Journal
  • Analyze the Speaking Style of a Family Member or Close Friend
  • Perform Rhetorical Analysis of Your Speech Patterns (You May Want to Record Some Samples for This Task)
  • Perform Rhetorical Analysis of Your Most Popular Social Media Post
  • Perform Rhetorical Analysis of Your Favorite TikTok Personality
  • Perform Rhetorical Analysis of Your Favorite YouTube Channel
  • Analyze a Piece of Your Own Writing from Some Years Back
  • Perform Rhetorical Analysis of the Lyrics for Your Favorite Song
  • Perform Rhetorical Analysis of Your Favorite Blog on Tumblr
  • Perform Rhetorical Analysis of a Letter from a Family Archive (Parents/Grandparents Correspondence, etc.)

Topics for Rhetorical Analysis of Speeches and Political Discourse

Public speeches and political addresses are the traditional objects of rhetorical analysis essays and for a reason. They make good material for practice since they are usually very clear and straightforward in their intent, context, and rhetorical situation.

  • Perform Rhetorical Analysis of Martin Luther King's Speech I Have a Dream
  • Perform Rhetorical Analysis of Your Public Speech/Civic Engagement Letter/etc.
  • Analyze Frederick Douglass's Fourth of July Speech
  • Frederick Douglass' Most Effective Rhetoric Strategy
  • Situational Rhetoric: Obama's 2004 Democrats Convention Speech
  • Compare and Contrast Two Speeches of Your Choice
  • Rhetorical Analysis of Far-Right Extremism In Europe
  • Rhetorical Analysis of the Statement to the Court Made by Eugene Victor Debs
  • Rhetorical Analysis Of The Ku Klux Klan Website
  • Rhetorical Analysis of a Political Advert by John Kerry
  • Rhetorical Analysis of the Barack Obama's Speech Presented on March 18, 2008
  • Rhetorical Analysis of The Victory Speech by Barrack Obama on November 4, 2012
  • Fire and Ice: A Rhetorical Analysis of Malcolm X's The Ballot or the Bullet and J. F. Kennedy's Inaugural Address
  • Rhetorical Analysis of What the Black Man Wants by Douglass Frederick
  • Analyze and Compare Winston Churchill's We Shall Fight on the Beaches and Martin Luther King, Jr.'s I Have a Dream speeches
  • Analysis of Political Speech in Linguistics: Obama's Inauguration Speech
  • Analyze Speech by P.G. Keating launching the International Year for Indigenous People of Australia
  • Analyze J.F. Kennedy's Inaugural Speech
  • Analyze the Delivery and Rhetorical Devices of any TED Speaker of Your Choice
  • Analyze and Compare Two Opposing Comments on a Polarizing Subject

Advertisements and Brand Voice Rhetorical Analysis Topic Ideas

An essay analyzing breakfast cereal commercial? Why not! Such an assignment is typical for business and marketing majors. Still, it can also attract artistic students and anyone who wants to be more mindful about ways we as consumers are persuaded to buy.

  • McDonald's Twitter Campaign and H&M's Potential Copyright Infringement
  • Pantene Chrysalis Ad Rhetorical Analysis
  • Rhetorical Analysis of Viking Gylltur Beverage Commercial
  • Rhetorical Analysis of Advertisements (Two of Your Choosing)
  • Perform Rhetorical Analysis of a Consumer Goods Overview
  • Analyze and Compare OTC Drug Commercials
  • Analyze and Compare Two Most Memorable Commercials for You
  • Comparing and Contrasting Rhetorical Devices Used in Japanese and American Commercials
  • The Rhetorical Uses of Peace in TV Commercials
  • The Role of Howard Nemerov's Santa Claus in Commercialization of Christmas
  • Rhetorical Analysis of Budweiser: Lost Dog – the Bud Puppy Commercial You Can't Not Love Super Bowl Commercial
  • Perform Rhetorical Analysis of a Commercial That Conflates Sexual Connotations With the Product Being Advertised
  • Perform Rhetorical Analysis of an Ad for Toys
  • Analyze and Compare Two Ads for Different Soft Drinks
  • Analyze Shifting Rhetoric of Tabaco Products Through the Decades
  • Analyze and Compare Two Ads for Bank Services. What Rhetorical Devices Are Used to Market the Same Services to Different Demographics
  • Compare Rhetorical Devices Used by Apple Inc. vs. Microsoft Corp. to Market Similar Products
  • Perform Rhetorical Analysis of a Sportswear Ads of Your Choice
  • Perform Rhetorical Analysis of Luxury Goods Ads
  • Analyze and Compare Two Ads for Different Perfumes

Non-Fiction Rhetorical Analysis Prompts

Non-fiction literature and film is another typical example of a rhetorical analysis essay subject. Clearness of context and authorial intend brings this category close to speeches. However, the scope of media and forms is much more varied, which makes for an exciting analysis.

  • Rhetorical Analysis of The Pig Who Sang to the Moon by Jeffrey Masson
  • Write a Detailed Rhetorical Analysis of an Article About Communication
  • Rhetorical Analysis of Social Media
  • Rhetorical Analysis of Childhood Experiences of Domestic Violence by Caroline McGee
  • David Suzuki's Essay The Right Stuff: Rhetorical Analysis
  • Rhetorical Analysis of the Documentary film Sicko by Michael Moore
  • Rhetorical Analysis of the Article 9/11 Hard Facts, Hard Truth
  • Rhetorical Analysis of the Technical Report Seawater pH and Anthropogenic Carbon Dioxide
  • Rhetorical Analysis of Cannabis in Cancer Treatment Argument
  • Rhetorical Analysis of The Ideal English Major by Mark Edmundson
  • Rhetorical Analysis of Public Choice by William F. Shughart II
  • Analyze the Usage of Informative and Conversational Tone in John McPhee's Non-Fiction Prose
  • How Language Shapes Identity According to Amy Tan: A Rhetorical Analysis of the Essay
  • Analyze and Compare Living Like Weasels by Annie Dillard Against Shooting an Elephant by George Orwell
  • Rhetorical Analysis of Indian Creek Chronicles: A Winter Alone in the Wilderness by Peter Fromm
  • Perform Rhetorical Analysis of a Popular Podcast (Your Choice)
  • Write a Rhetorical Analysis of an Article on Poignant Social Issue
  • Perform Rhetorical Analysis of a Self-Help Book of Your Choice
  • Write a Rhetorical Analysis of a Memoir of Your Choice
  • Perform a Rhetorical Analysis of 2020 Debates on Mask Wearing and Other Pandemic Restrictions

Fiction Rhetorical Analysis Example Topics

Works of fiction are often objects of literature analysis, but they can be subjected to rhetorical analysis too! Layers of metaphors, irony, stylistic choices, and unreliable narrators make such analysis a challenging but rewarding endeavor.

  • Analyze Speeches of Socrates in Plato's Phaedrus
  • Analyze A Modest Proposal by Jonathan Swift
  • Rhetorical Analysis of the Short Story Cathedral By Raymond Carver
  • Sherlock Holmes Of The Conan Doyle And Of The 21st Century Critical Thinking: Rhetorical Analysis
  • Rhetorical Analysis of Do You Wanna Date My Avatar Music Performance
  • Make a Quick Rhetorical Analysis of a Short Story, a Film, and an Article of Various Subjects
  • Rhetorical Analysis of Tangled (Animated Film by Disney)
  • Rhetorical Analysis of A Piece of Chalk by G.K. Chesterton
  • Rhetorical Analysis of The Way to Rainy Mountain by N. Scott Momaday
  • Analyze and Compare Styles of Narrators in Emily Brontë's Wuthering Heights
  • Perform Rhetorical Analysis of Coleridge's Poem Kubla Khan
  • Perform Rhetorical Analysis of Citizen Kane 's Narrative Structure
  • Perform Rhetorical Analysis of J.R.R. Tolkien's Lord of the Rings Character's Speech (Any Character of Your Choice)
  • Analyze How Romeo + Juliet (1996) Handles Shakespeare's Text to Create Contemporary Narrative
  • Perform Rhetorical Analysis of a Popular YA Novel of Your Choice
  • Analyze and Compare Two American Protest Song of Your Choice from Different Time Periods
  • Analyze and Compare Rhetorical Devices Used by a Rap and a Spoken Word Performer of Your Choice
  • Analyze and Compare Rhetorical Devices Used by Agatha Christie to Create the Unreliable Narrator in The Murder of Roger Ackroyd and Endless Night
  • Perform Rhetorical Analysis of George Orwell's 1984
  • Perform Rhetorical Analysis of a Comic Sketch of Your Choice

If you need more inspiration on a specific topic, just go to our free library and search topics you are interested in by keywords or use our topic generation tool . You can also request a custom-made sample on any topic of your choice. Our expert writers will prepare a model essay for you in no time!

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Are you having trouble thinking of rhetorical analysis topics to explore? Selecting a title for such an essay is an excellent place to start. Afterward, proceed to introduction, body, and then conclusion. In this section, we have compiled a short list of greatest topics for rhetorical analysis to help you improve your grades. Through the catalog, you will discover how to create best topics for rhetorical analysis essay about a worthwhile issue. Need professional essay help online ? Visit StudyCrumb! Simply share your instructions and get your rhetorical analysis or any other essay completed by a pro.

What Are Rhetorical Analysis Topics?

Rhetorical analysis essay topics refer to the subject matter in which researchers examine how different parts of a work produce a specific effect on the reader. They then develop an argument and find compelling evidence to support their opinion. Such topics focus on a particular work of literature, discourse, or art. Unlike a literary analysis ,  rhetorical analysis paper topics are intended to analyze works from a rhetorical standpoint. Thus, the tricks used to convince readers are assessed. Rhetorical analysis ideas and topics are designed to evaluate students' reasoning ability for close attention to detail. Given this, you should dissect literary work into its elements and assess the author's effective strategies.

Basics of Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics

Characteristics of Good Rhetorical Analysis Topics

Pick a subject that interests you when selecting topics for analysis. Additionally, it requires adequate information to be used in research. What are good rhetorical analysis topics ? This is one of the questions that students keep asking themselves. Below is a listing of characteristics of good topics for rhetorical analysis. The subject matter must consider the scenario's target audience, goal, and background.

  • It should be broad with plenty of information.
  • A good topic ought to be fascinating. That is to say, it should capture reader’s attention.
  • It must also give an excellent choice for research.

How to Choose a Rhetorical Analysis Topic?

An exciting rhetorical analysis essay topic is the first element in any writing that aims to pique the reader's curiosity. All writers strive to ensure their work is professional and appealing to the audience. Furthermore, the titles must be engaging to make your essay solid. Since finding subjects that are compelling and fascinating might be problematic, here are some tips to keep in mind when deciding on good rhetorical analysis essay topics.

  • Pick a subject that appeals to you. Before composing an analysis paper, choose a topic that interests you. Moreover, make sure there is room for research.
  • Consider your understanding of the topic. Selecting familiar rhetorical essay topics will be helpful in your writing. Remember to reveal your understanding of the author's writing technique when conducting the review.
  • Carry out background research. Make a list of subjects that catch your attention. After that, whittle down the selection and choose an ideal topic. You can achieve this by investigating the information that is already accessible on it.
  • Seek help from your instructor. Ask your lecturer for assistance if you are still unsure of the subject. Compile a list of appropriate rhetorical analysis topics to make it easy for the educator.

Best Rhetorical Analysis Topics List

The best rhetorical analysis topics are pertinent to tasks and have sufficient information for use. When handling these essays, choose an engaging subject to make the assignment more doable. Topics for study are not limited to speeches from notable presidents or popular poems. Investigate these interesting rhetorical analysis essay ideas related to cinema, artwork, prompt, and current affairs.

  • Justification of vengeance in The Odyssey .
  • The meaning underlying Mona Lisa’s smile.
  • Literary techniques used in The Chronicles of Narnia .
  • The primary theme in Winston Churchill's We Shall Fight on the Beaches .
  • How stylistic tactics affect a reader's impression of non-fiction material.
  • Purpose of literary devices in Oscar Wilde 's works.
  • How a creative topic and storyline might make a blockbuster.
  • What was the main point in president Trump's speech?
  • How to tell if a play uses the right rhetorical tactics.
  • What prevents speeches from garnering bigger crowds?

Good Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics

Perhaps you are seeking good topics to write rhetorical analysis on for your academic article. Good topics for rhetorical analysis essay are listed here.

  • How the use of casual and formal language influences speech.
  • Different rhetorical techniques used by Classical and Rogerian authors.
  • How preconceptions might limit successful application of rhetorical techniques.
  • Significance of abstract images within classical literature.
  • How literary works communicate information via words, expressions, and concepts.
  • Slavery, as discussed in Beloved by Toni Morrison.
  • What do Pepsi's logo colors symbolize?
  • How President Joe Biden utilized alliteration in his speech on democracy.
  • Linguistic trends in William Shakespeare's publications.
  • How former president Barack Obama applied logos, pathos, and ethos in his farewell speech.
  • A comprehensive rhetorical analysis of The Odyssey .
  • How to use stylistic techniques in a way that can foresee the audience's response.
  • Visual components of Hollywood filmmaking.
  • A criticism of the hyperbole of how innovation has affected culture.
  • Analysis of president Joe Biden's speech on democracy.

Don’t have time for in-depth research? Buy essays online from academic experts and get a paper of top quality delivered promptly.

Easy Rhetorical Analysis Topics

Do you wish to focus on easy rhetorical analysis topics? If so, you will discover some of the most effective suggestions in this paragraph. These subjects are easy to write about since information is readily available on the web. Nevertheless, you must be prepared to devote time and resources to studying and composing your easy rhetorical analysis essay topics.

  • How the American national anthem employs literary techniques.
  • TED's presentations and how they embrace rhetorical devices to entice viewers.
  • How writers approach themes of ethnicity and discrimination in their writing.
  • Differences between employment of stylistic elements in historical and contemporary cultures.
  • How linguistic strategies are used in religious books.
  • The difficulty of captivating an audience to a monologue.
  • Various rhetorical strategies that media presenters employ.
  • How can rhetorical depth of any discourse be identified?
  • How various authors handle heroism topics when it comes to their writing.
  • The significance of symbolism with regards to literature.
  • How Michael Scott applies rhetorical techniques.
  • R&B songwriting strategies.
  • Advertiser-selected terminologies on billboards and posters.
  • Creative methods used in the renowned portrait of Mona Lisa .
  • Rhetoric elements used in Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen.

Excellent Topics for Rhetorical Analysis

If you wish to focus on excellent rhetorical essay topics, below are a few you can select from. You only need to decide which rhetorical topics for essays to use.

  • How successful was Barack Obama’s speech during his presidency?
  • Use of stylistic devices in Nike’s Just Do It ad.
  • How does education stifle creative thinking?
  • A speech or piece that uses oratorical tactics.
  • How authors characterize heroism.
  • Rhetorical analysis of Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen.
  • The effect of rhetorical techniques on reader’s comprehension of a non-fiction story.
  • Brand identity and emotional appeal of Monster drink.
  • Impact of President Trump's tweets.
  • Literary devices utilized in eulogy speeches.
  • Relationship between racial discrimination and sexism in America.
  • Pepsi's marketing ideas.
  • A billboard that got your attention.
  • A rhetorical review of President Trump's tweets.

Did you spot a fitting topic? Now it’s time to see how to write a rhetorical analysis essay . 

Visual Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics

Visual rhetorical analysis topic ideas might help readers recollect your paper. Consider the author's objective and demographics of the intended audience, as it will aid you in conducting complete research. The visual rhetoric essay topics suggestions below can help you achieve that aim.

  • Effects of soundtracks on movies.
  • Newspaper covers using rhetoric aspects.
  • How innovative advertising employs symbols.
  • Rhetorical evaluation of exhibits in art galleries.
  • How slow motion affects films.
  • Use of symbolism in Avatar .
  • William Shakespeare's best poems.
  • How Black Panther utilizes symbolism.
  • Use of arts in The Square .
  • How TV commercials employ texts.
  • Author's utilization of personification in Bluebird by Charles Bukowski.
  • Usage of audio, music, and narrative in presentations.
  • How does John Curran utilize imagery in The Painted Veil .
  • Ways in which Michael Lewis uses cinematography and soundtracks in The Blind Side .
  • How Jurassic Park transformed special effects.

Need more rhetorical topics? Give our Essay Title Creator a shot!

Controversial Topics for Rhetorical Analysis

If you consider debate intriguing, this part includes the best suggestions for rhetorical topics for essay. When composing scholarly articles, these rhetorical analysis topics are outstanding. Just do some research on the piece carefully and comprehend the debate.

  • Use of stereotypes and racial tropes in films.
  • Representation of science and technology in science fiction.
  • Religion and spirituality in Change Your Thoughts, Change Your Life.
  • The portrayal of mental health issues in popular culture.
  • Violence and its impact on society in Avatar.
  • Propaganda in the Triumph of the Will .
  • The Notebook and its illustration of love and friendships.
  • Schindler’s List and how it explains the Holocaust.
  • Dark humor as used in Catch-22 .
  • Police brutality and racial injustice in Copwatch .
  • Immigration and border control in A Better Life .
  • Rhetorical techniques affect how a reader interprets a non-fiction story.
  • Plot twist in The Titanic .
  • Is there something about William Shakespeare's writing style that really appeals to you?
  • How does the audience's impression of the story be affected by the author's credibility?

Rhetorical Analysis Essay Ideas for Students

The success of all academic writing depends on utilizing rhetorical analysis ideas efficiently. This is because the foundation of everything undertaken within schools is to influence thought patterns through speech application. Since language is typically hypnotic, it aims to educate. It is uncommon for students to avoid writing research papers on rhetorical analysis, as they appear as projects, articles, and term papers. Here are a few essay propositions for high school and university learners.

Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics for High School Students

Topics for a rhetorical analysis essay are many. If you are a secondary school student having problems deciding on rhetorical analysis topics to select from, you are in the right place. Here are 15 essay topics for high school.

  • Use of metaphor in a speech from your school director on graduation day.
  • Main themes used in Alice in Wonderland .
  • Rhetorical devices used in The Story of an Hour by Kate Chopin .
  • How Arthur Miller uses foreshadowing in Death of a Salesman .
  • Literary elements used in An Enemy of the People .
  • Central concepts within William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet.
  • Theme of social class in The Canterbury Tales .
  • Power of tradition as illustrated in The Lottery.
  • Fundamental concepts of Jordan Peele's Get Out .
  • Literary elements used in Frankenstein by Mary Shelley.
  • How Virginia Woolf utilizes the stream-of-consciousness tactic in The Waves .
  • How analogy is used in the inauguration speech of my math teacher.
  • Guilt and justice as discussed in And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie.
  • Synopsis of The Godfather by Francis Ford Coppola.
  • Major theme in Gone With The Wind .

 Rhetorical Analysis Topics for College Students

College students can choose from a wide range of rhetoric research paper topics. They will greatly gain from these analysis paper ideas in the last year of school. Below are essential topics that college learners can select for their essays.

  • How solitude is demonstrated within works of literature.
  • Poetic devices in performances and poems.
  • How does rhetoric function in websites and other digital writing?
  • Methods that can be used to evaluate a scene from a popular film.
  • Main themes in The Matrix .
  • Strength of speech writing in Barack Obama's speeches.
  • Michael Scott's primary writing techniques.
  • A movie that had a massive impact on your life.
  • A significant political discourse that is still discussed today.
  • How Rick Bragg uses comedy in his article The Guiltless Pleasure .
  • What justifications does David Grann make in The Mark of a Masterpiece ?
  • Stylistic devices used in The Crucible by Arthur Miller.
  • How using literary techniques has been streamlined thanks to technology.
  • What elements are commonly found in acceptance speeches?
  • How evangelists utilize rhetoric to engage their audiences.

Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics in Different Fields

There are many distinct and good topics to write a rhetorical analysis on. It is improbable that one could ever run out of ideas for them when writing any paper. Aside from the topics mentioned above, numerous other fields, for instance, speeches and fiction work, can be explored. Arts are the primary focus of the bulk of these rhetorical subjects. In addition, there are many resources to choose your topics for rhetorical analysis. This section provides examples of other fields that can be traversed.

Rhetorical Analysis Speech Topics

There have been many famous speeches throughout history. To analyze one, you need to consider different aspects of rhetoric topics. For example, the speaker's goals, the speech's historical text, and viewer's aspirations. Here are a handful of topics that can be explored for rhetorical analysis of a speech .

  • Quit India speech by Mahatma Gandhi.
  • How President Donald Trump utilized personification in his final speech.
  • Figures of speech that Richard Nixon employed in his resignation speech.
  • President Biden 's remarks on transgender issues.
  • Malala Yousafzai's acceptance speech for the Nobel Peace Prize.
  • Dark and vengeful undertones in William Blake's A Poison Tree .
  • How to get people to pay attention to Franklin Roosevelt's inaugural speech.
  • The majority of TED speeches use rhetorical tactics.
  • Literary devices used within the speech from Finding Forrester .
  • Discursive strategies used in Jack Ma's inspiring speech.
  • Tones used in Theodore Roosevelt's Duties of American citizenship .
  • Rhetorical devices utilized in JF. Kennedy's inauguration speech.
  • What were the goals of Ronald Reagan's Speech in Address to the Nation on the Challenger ?
  • Oprah's appraisal of Golden Globes' discourse.
  • How does Sam Bern’s outlook on life affect his ability to communicate in My Philosophy for a Happy Life ?

Rhetorical Analysis Ideas on Movies

Do you enjoy watching movies? Has your teacher given you freedom to select them as one of the rhetorical analysis essay ideas? If yes, you can look into some of the points on this list, which provide rhetorical analysis article ideas. In certain films, an individual makes a speech that everybody remembers. Whatever the case, taking observations is necessary for performing rhetorical assessment of movies discourse.

  • Black Panther’s application of literary devices.
  • How the film's author employs a rhetorical tactic in How To Train Your Dragon .
  • Salvatore Corsitta's remarks from The Godfather .
  • Use of imagery by Zack Snyder.
  • The Hunger Games’ use of figurative language.
  • Rhetorical devices used in Pursuit of Happiness .
  • Theme of hope in The Ultimate Gift .
  • The movie Get Out racial theme.
  • Moral standards as depicted in Gone Baby Gone .
  • How racism led to different issues in A Soldier's Story .
  • Concept of posttraumatic stress disorder as illustrated in Fearless movie .
  • Lessons from Life of a King movie.
  • Ethical behaviors as encapsulated by Charles Ferguson.
  • Main themes of Mind, Body, and Soul .
  • Power theme in My Kingdom .

Poetry Topics for Rhetorical Analysis

A plethora of topics to write a rhetorical analysis on is available online, and poem is among the unique subjects that can be explored. To analyze poetry, you need to consider the speaker, rhyme’s meaning, and structure. The following are distinct rhetorical analysis paper topics that students can use.

  • Primary metaphors used by Sylvia Plath .
  • Theme of rage and evil in A Poison Tree .
  • Primary rhetorical strategies employed by W.H.Auden.
  • How personification is used in Bluebird.
  • Concept of nature in Mary Oliver's Fall .
  • Function of contrast in I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings .
  • Role of street jargon as illustrated by Langstone Hughes.
  • Stylistic elements used by Jane Kenyon.
  • Poetic devices used in Disillusionment of Ten O'clock .
  • Primary theme in Love Song .
  • How the author employed poetic devices in Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night .
  • Self-acceptance as illustrated in Phenomenal Woman .
  • Characteristics of the speaker as explained by Claude McKay.
  • Illustration of love in A Red, Red Rose .
  • Artistic devices used by William Shakespeare in Venus and Adonis .

Literature Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics

Are you searching for rhetorical analysis essay topics that will make your instructor smile? If that is the case, here are some fantastic ideas for rhetorical analysis.

  • Early literature from the 17th century.
  • Faith and religion in the Quran.
  • How to tell if a drama employs correct figures of speech.
  • An in-depth review of rhetorical tactics used in France and Europe.
  • Techniques used in Michelle Obama's Our Diversity Makes Us Who We Are .
  • Literary tactics used by Melania Trump in her farewell address as the first lady.
  • Textual analysis of A Lover's Complaint by William Shakespeare.
  • Theme of misogyny in Hamlet .
  • Central message in Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God.
  • Impact of heroes' personal lives on the society in Oedipus and contemporary America.
  • Myth's influence on culture as explained in Adam and Eve’s story.
  • Metaphors used in the legendary speech made by Martin Luther.
  • What figurative language stands out in The Pearl Harbor Address ?
  • Humanity vs. Nature in Their Eyes Were Watching God .
  • Justice in Scott Fitzgerald's Great Gatsby .

Rhetorical Analysis Topics on Fiction

Like all rhetorical topics, fiction has a point it wants to convey. You might consider how you reacted to the fiction content as a reader. Therefore, if you enjoy reading or watching fictional characters, feel free to choose any rhetorical analysis essay topic below.

  • One Hundred Years of Solitude's elitist theme.
  • Central themes in Into Thin Air by Jon Krakauer .
  • How The Alchemist presents character growth.
  • How Erin Morgenstern created varied personalities in The Night Circus .
  • Behavior as illustrated by Jesse Stuart.
  • How Code Name Verity delivers its message of friendship.
  • Depiction of war in Men At Arms .
  • Significance of dreams in Of Mice and Men .
  • How relevant is Macbeth in the modern era?
  • What linguistic techniques does Ayn Rand use?
  • What distinguishes A Room of One's Own from other books?
  • Major themes in To Kill a Mockingbird.
  • Mysterious language as used by Beatriz Williams.
  • How The Lord of the Flies explores conflict between civilization and barbarism.
  • Writing styles used in The Midnight Library .

Non-Fictional Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics

Non-fiction works are those that are fact-based. When analyzing them, examine the environmental components surrounding rhetorical analysis paper topics. If you enjoy non-fictional topics for a rhetorical analysis, consider using these ideas.

  • Rhetorical techniques in Cold Blood .
  • What was the plot in Charlie Chaplin's speech from The Great Dictator ?
  • Use of allegory in Avengers: Endgame .
  • Traveling Mercies ' rhetoric techniques.
  • How Someday Maybe utilizes personification.
  • Theme of racism in Absolute Beginners .
  • How Ron Chernow explores the concept of triumph in Alexander Hamilton .
  • Stylistic elements in Out of Africa .
  • John Hersey's linguistic interpretation of the suffering in Hiroshima .
  • Themes explored in the Sermons .
  • Religious beliefs according to The Ethics of Belief by William Kingdom.
  • How Mohsin Hamid explores themes of love and turmoil in Exit West .
  • Stylistic techniques in A Brief History of Time .
  • What motivates bibliophiles to read Beloved?
  • Theme of fanaticism in Fever Pitch .

Rhetorical Analysis Topics About Advertisements

The main goal of any advertisement is to convince the audience. Therefore, a successful campaign forges a bond between the client and the product. When exploring rhetorical analysis essay topics, consider the general appeal of the advertisement. Additionally, take into account the target audience and rhetorical techniques. You can choose rhetorical analysis topic ideas from this list.

  • Examples of innovative and powerful advertising.
  • BluBlocker Sunglasses marketing campaign.
  • Advertising's ability to reach a particular audience.
  • Impact of advertising on brand recognition.
  • Effectiveness of Coca-Cola’s share a coke advertisements of 2018.
  • Central idea behind Red Bull's Giving Life to the Night ad.
  • How effective is Apple's Think Different ad.
  • Was Toyota Moving Forward campaign a success?
  • Success behind Disney's The happiest place on Earth tagline.
  • How does Samsung advertise products?
  • How are rhetorical tactics used in television advertising?
  • Effectiveness of Pepsi's video campaigns.
  • Use of logos, ethos, and pathos in MacBook commercials.
  • How do advertisers choose the language that appears on billboards and posters?
  • History of Fanta's effective utilization of advertising.

>> Read more: Marketing Topics for Research

Bottom Line on Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics

Many of you ask a common question: "what is a good topic for a rhetorical analysis essay?" Feel inclined to utilize any rhetorical analysis topics highlighted in this blog article to write a top-notch essay.   Hopefully, you have found a suitable topic. Feel free to browse our blog for more analytical essay topics and writing tips. From process analysis essay topics to critical analysis essay writing suggestions, we have a bunch of useful guides for students. 

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Rhetorical Analysis Definition and Examples

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rhetorical analysis essay

Introduction

What is a rhetorical analysis essay a quick overview.

A rhetorical analysis essay is an academic essay writing form. In this essay, the audience evaluates how an author or speaker uses various rhetorical techniques to convey their message and persuade the audience. The primary goal of a rhetorical analysis essay is to analyze how effectively the speaker can leave an impact on the audience.

In a rhetorical analysis essay, you have to dissect a piece of text. It can be a speech, a book, an article, or any other form of communication. You break down the content using rhetorical devices like ethos, pathos, and logos. These devices assess how the choice of words, tone, structure, and persuasive strategies contribute to the overall message.

Rhetorical Strategies: Exploring the Key Concepts

Rhetorical strategies are techniques used to persuade or manipulate an audience through language and communication. Some key concepts include:

Ethos appeals to the credibility and trustworthiness of the speaker or source.

It appeals to the emotions and feelings of the audience to evoke sympathy or excitement.

It emphasizes the logic and reason of the argument through evidence, facts, and sound reasoning.

This refers to the opportune moment of an argument, taking into account the context and readiness of the audience.

5. Metaphor

This concept uses figurative language to make a comparison, mostly to clarify or enhance understanding of an argument.

6. Repetition

Sometimes, authors use repeating words or phrases to emphasize a point or to create a rhythmic effect.

7. Rhetorical Questions

Authors ask questions that are not meant to be answered but to provoke thought or engage the audience.

8. Anaphora

Repeating a word or phrase at the beginning of successive sentences or clauses for emphasis.

9. Parallelism

Structuring sentences or phrases with similar grammatical structures to create balance and rhythm.

Using language to convey the opposite of its literal meaning. This is mostly used to demonstrate humor or criticism.

11. Hyperbole

This refers to exaggerating a point for better effect. This is often used to emphasize a point or create a vivid image.

12. Analogy

Drawing comparisons between two different things to explain or illustrate a concept.

13. Antithesis

These are contrasting ideas or words within a sentence that highlight their differences.

14. Allusion

Authors sometimes make references to literature, history, or pop culture to add depth and meaning.

15. Syllogism

This is a logical argument consisting of a major, a minor premise, and a conclusion.

These are the key concepts that are often used in persuasive essay topics writing. Our experts can guide you and tell you how and where to use these aspects.

How to Write an Exceptional Rhetorical Analysis Essay: The Real Deal!

Here are the key steps to help you craft an exceptional rhetorical analysis essay:

1. Selecting the Text

Choose a text (speech, article, advertisement, etc.) you want to analyze. It should be rich in rhetoric and provide ample material for analysis.

2. Understanding Rhetoric

Familiarise yourself with the basics of rhetoric. This comprises three key elements –

  • Ethos that appeals the credibility
  • Pathos, which appeals to emotional appeal
  • Logos appealing logical appeal.

These elements form the foundation of your analysis.

3. Reading and Annotating

Carefully read the chosen text multiple times. Annotate the text as you go along, highlighting rhetorical devices, persuasive techniques, and any significant appeals to ethos, pathos, or logos.

4. Identifying Rhetorical Devices

Identify and list the rhetorical devices used in the text. Common devices include metaphors, similes, hyperbole, alliteration, repetition, and parallelism. Note how these devices contribute to the author's argument or message.

5. Understanding Audience

Consider the target audience for the text. Analyze how the author tailors their rhetoric to connect with and persuade this specific audience.

6. Determining the Author's Purpose

Determine the primary purpose of the text. Is the author trying to persuade, inform, entertain, or inspire? Analyze how the author's rhetorical choices align with their purpose.

7. Evaluating Ethos, Pathos, and Logos

Examine how the author uses ethos, pathos, and logos to persuade the audience. Identify instances where these appeals are strong or weak and explain their impact.

8. Structural Analysis

Analyze the text's structure. Look at how the author organizes their argument, including the introduction, body paragraphs, and conclusion.

9. Writing the Introduction

Craft a strong introduction for your essay. Provide essential background information about the text and author. Clearly state the text's purpose and your thesis statement.

10. Body Paragraphs

Dedicate each body paragraph to a specific rhetorical element or device you've identified. Start each paragraph with a clear topic sentence, provide evidence from the text, and analyze how that evidence contributes to the author's argument and engages the audience.

11. Transitions

Ensure smooth transitions between paragraphs and ideas. Use transition words and phrases to guide the reader through your analysis.

12. Conclusion

Summarise the key points and restate your thesis in the conclusion.

But you cannot submit just yet. You have to proofread the essay thoroughly and make edits wherever required. However, if you don’t have the means or time to do that, ask us. We have the best tools and professionals to help you make the final touches before the submission.

Fun & Interesting Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics

  • The Rhetoric of Stand-Up Comedy: Analysing Comedic Techniques.
  • The Persuasive Power of Internet Memes.
  • Political Speeches: When Politicians Try to Be Funny.
  • Analyzing the Rhetoric of Late-Night Talk Show Hosts.
  • The Art of Satire: Analysing Satirical News Shows.
  • Celebrity Endorsements: Laughing All the Way to the Bank.
  • Infomercials: The Rhetorical Tricks Behind the Cheesiness.
  • The Rhetoric of Commercials: From Super Bowl Ads to Local Spots.
  • Analyzing the Use of Humour in Advertising.
  • The Language of Social Media Influencers: #InfluencerRhetoric.
  • Parody in Popular Culture: From "Weird Al" to SNL.
  • Analyzing the Rhetorical Devices in Comedic Literature.
  • The Humour of Shakespeare: Analysing His Use of Rhetoric.
  • The Stand-Up Comedy of George Carlin: A Rhetorical Analysis.
  • Analyzing the Rhetoric of Internet Trolls.
  • The Rhetorical Power of Cartoons and Animated Shows.
  • The Art of Irony in Literature and Film.
  • The Rhetoric of Self-Deprecating Humor: A Study in Modesty.
  • Analyzing the Satirical Elements in "The Onion" Articles.
  • The Persuasion of Political Cartoons: Beyond the Laughter.
  • Analyzing the Rhetoric of Social Media Roasts.
  • The Use of Sarcasm in Modern Conversation.
  • Analyzing the Rhetorical Devices in Late-Night Monologues.
  • The Art of Wordplay in Stand-Up Comedy.
  • The Rhetoric of Comedic Podcasts: From Scripted to Improv.
  • Analyzing the Rhetorical Devices in "The Daily Show."
  • The Humor in Advertising Mascots: From Geico's Gecko to the Energizer Bunny.
  • Analyzing the Rhetoric of Viral Internet Challenges.
  • The Use of Hyperbole in Humorous Speeches.
  • Analyzing the Rhetorical Devices in Classic Sitcoms.

Cool Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics on Poetry

  • Analyze the use of metaphors in Robert Frost's poem "The Road Not Taken."
  • Examine the symbolism of the caged bird in Maya Angelou's "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings."
  • Explore the theme of love and loss in Shakespeare's sonnets.
  • Analyze the use of irony in Emily Dickinson's poem "I'm Nobody! Who are you?"
  • Examine the role of imagery in Langston Hughes's "Harlem (Dream Deferred)."
  • Discuss the use of personification in William Blake's "The Tyger."
  • Analyze the structure and rhyme scheme in John Keats's "Ode to a Nightingale."
  • Examine the theme of nature in Walt Whitman's "Song of Myself."
  • Discuss the use of alliteration in Edgar Allan Poe's "The Raven."
  • Analyze the use of repetition in Allen Ginsberg's "Howl."
  • Examine the symbolism of the rose in William Wordsworth's "Lines Composed a Few Miles Above Tintern Abbey."
  • Discuss the use of enjambment in Sylvia Plath's "Daddy."
  • Analyze the theme of identity in Langston Hughes's "Theme for English B."
  • Examine the use of sensory imagery in T.S. Eliot's "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock."
  • Discuss the role of tone in Robert Frost's "Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening."
  • Analyze the use of juxtaposition in William Blake's "The Lamb" and "The Tyger."
  • Examine the theme of death in Emily Dickinson's poetry.
  • Discuss the use of allegory in Samuel Taylor Coleridge's "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner."
  • Analyze the symbolism of the sea in Walt Whitman's "Leaves of Grass."
  • Examine the use of onomatopoeia in E.E. Cummings's "Buffalo Bill's."
  • Discuss the role of satire in Alexander Pope's "The Rape of the Lock."
  • Analyze the use of paradox in John Donne's "Death Be Not Proud."
  • Examine the theme of time in Andrew Marvell's "To His Coy Mistress."
  • Discuss the use of irony in W.B. Yeats's "The Second Coming."
  • Analyze the structure and rhyme scheme in William Wordsworth's "I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud."
  • Examine the theme of war in Wilfred Owen's poetry.
  • Discuss the use of allusion in T.S. Eliot's "The Waste Land."
  • Analyze the symbolism of the mirror in Sylvia Plath's "Mirror."
  • Examine the use of repetition and refrain in Langston Hughes's "A Dream Deferred."
  • Discuss the role of perspective and point of view in Robert Browning's "My Last Duchess."

Amazing Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics on Movies

  • Analyze the symbolism in Quentin Tarantino's "Pulp Fiction."
  • Discuss the cinematography techniques in Christopher Nolan's "Inception."
  • Discuss the role of music and sound in Stanley Kubrick's "2001: A Space Odyssey."
  • Analyze the use of color in Wes Anderson's "The Grand Budapest Hotel."
  • Examine the character development in Martin Scorsese's "Taxi Driver."
  • Discuss the impact of editing and pacing in Alfred Hitchcock's "Psycho."
  • Analyze the use of metaphor and allegory in "The Matrix" series.
  • Examine the cultural commentary in Jordan Peele's "Get Out."
  • Discuss the narrative structure in Akira Kurosawa's "Rashomon."
  • Analyze the use of montage in Sergei Eisenstein's "Battleship Potemkin."
  • Examine the portrayal of gender roles in Ridley Scott's "Alien."
  • Discuss the social commentary in Bong Joon-ho's "Parasite."
  • Analyze the use of visual effects in James Cameron's "Avatar."
  • Examine the role of foreshadowing in David Fincher's "Fight Club."
  • Discuss the symbolism of the white dress in Darren Aronofsky's "Black Swan."
  • Analyze the political themes in Spike Lee's "Do the Right Thing."
  • Examine the use of lighting and shadows in Orson Welles's "Citizen Kane."
  • Discuss the character archetypes in George Lucas's "Star Wars" franchise.
  • Analyze the portrayal of mental illness in Ron Howard's "A Beautiful Mind."
  • Examine the use of satire in Stanley Kubrick's "Dr. Strangelove."
  • Discuss the representation of technology in Steven Spielberg's "E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial."
  • Analyze the use of flashbacks in Quentin Tarantino's "Kill Bill."
  • Examine the role of costume design in Sofia Coppola's "Marie Antoinette."
  • Discuss the ethical dilemmas in Christopher Nolan's "The Dark Knight."
  • Analyze the symbolism of the feather in Robert Zemeckis's "Forrest Gump."
  • Examine the portrayal of race and identity in Barry Jenkins's "Moonlight."
  • Discuss the use of non-linear storytelling in Guy Ritchie's "Snatch."
  • Analyze the visual motifs in Tim Burton's "Edward Scissorhands."
  • Examine the role of silence in Yorgos Lanthimos's "The Lobster."
  • Discuss the representation of addiction in Darren Aronofsky's "Requiem for a Dream."

Top Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics on Popular Speeches

  • Analyze the use of metaphor and repetition in "I Have a Dream" by Martin Luther King Jr.
  • Examine the rhetorical strategies in "A More Perfect Union" by Barack Obama
  • Analyze the language Lincoln used to commemorate fallen soldiers in his "The Gettysburg Address"
  • Examine Malcolm X's persuasive techniques in "The Ballot or the Bullet"
  • Analyze the rhetoric used by Betty Friedan to spark the second-wave feminist movement in "The Feminine Mystique"
  • Examine the "Speech to the Troops at Tilbury" by Queen Elizabeth I
  • Analyze the persuasive strategies used by Ronald Reagan in his "Tear Down This Wall” speech
  • Examine the use of ethos, pathos, and logos in "I Am Malala" by Malala Yousafzai
  • Analyze the emotional impact of "The Last Lecture" by Randy Pausch
  • "Ain't I a Woman?" by Sojourner Truth: Examine the powerful rhetorical devices used in this women's rights speech.
  • "Remarks on the Assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr." by Robert F. Kennedy: Analyse the emotional appeal and call for unity in this speech.
  • Examine the use of personal anecdotes in "The Power of Vulnerability" by Brené Brown
  • Analyse Churchill's call in his iconic "We Shall Fight on the Beaches" speech
  • Examine the rhetorical devices used in Jobs' "The Stanford Commencement Address"
  • "A Whisper of AIDS" by Mary Fisher
  • Roosevelt's persuasive language in "The Four Freedoms"
  • Analyse "The Man in the Arena" by Theodore Roosevelt
  • Examine the use of ethos and pathos in the "Remarks on the Signing of the Voting Rights Act" by Lyndon B. Johnson
  • Analyse "The Crisis" speech by Winston Churchill
  • Examine the rhetorical devices used in "The Perils of Indifference" by Elie Wiesel
  • Analyse Reagan's persuasive arguments in "A Time for Choosing"
  • Examine the satirical elements and social critique in "The Paradox of Our Time" by George Carlin
  • Analyse "The Danger of a Single Story" by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
  • Examine the rhetorical impact of "The Stanford Rape Victim's Impact Statement" by Chanel Miller
  • Analyzing the "Remarks to the Senate" by Margaret Chase Smith
  • Examine Churchill's rhetoric in "Blood, Toil, Tears, and Sweat"
  • Analyze the rhetorical style of "The Sermon on the Mount" by Jesus Christ
  • Examine Henry David Thoreau's call in "A Plea for Captain John Brown"
  • Analyse Douglass's powerful critique in "What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?"
  • Examine the persuasive techniques in "The Youth Climate Strike" by Greta Thunberg

Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics on Non–Fiction

  • The Power of Persuasion: Analysing Martin Luther King Jr.'s 'I Have a Dream' Speech.
  • The Impact of Narrative Techniques in Memoirs: A Study of 'The Glass Castle' by Jeannette Walls.
  • Fact vs. Fiction: Investigating the Line Between Journalism and Creative Non-Fiction.
  • The Art of the Personal Essay: Examining E.B. White's 'Once More to the Lake.'
  • Environmental Awareness Through Non-Fiction: Rachel Carson's 'Silent Spring.'
  • The Use of Anecdotes in Malcolm Gladwell's 'Outliers' to Make a Persuasive Argument.
  • Cultural Critique in Non-Fiction: George Orwell's '1984' and Its Relevance Today.
  • Exploring the Power of Storytelling in Non-Fiction: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's 'The Danger of a Single Story.'
  • The Role of Statistics and Data Visualization in Non-Fiction Writing.
  • Evaluating the Ethical Dilemmas in Investigative Journalism: 'All the President's Men' by Carl Bernstein and Bob Woodward.
  • Rhetorical Devices in Susan Sontag's 'On Photography' and Their Influence on the Reader.
  • The Art of the Profile: Analysing the Style of Truman Capote's 'In Cold Blood.'
  • The Role of Personal Experience in Non-Fiction Writing: Joan Didion's 'The Year of Magical Thinking.'
  • The Impact of Emotional Appeals in Non-Fiction: 'The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks' by Rebecca Skloot.
  • Science Communication in Non-Fiction: Carl Sagan's 'Cosmos' as a Model.
  • The Art of Argumentation in Christopher Hitchens' 'God Is Not Great.'
  • Analyzing the Role of Humor in David Sedaris' Essays.
  • The Evolution of the Self-Help Genre: From Dale Carnegie to Brené Brown.
  • Exploring the Use of Personal Reflection in Non-Fiction: Ta-Nehisi Coates' 'Between the World and Me.'
  • The Intersection of Science and Literature: Mary Roach's 'Stiff.'
  • The Influence of Historical Context on Non-Fiction Writing: Howard Zinn's 'A People's History of the United States.'
  • Environmental Advocacy Through Non-Fiction: Bill McKibben's 'The End of Nature.'
  • The Art of Investigative Reporting: 'The Devil in the White City' by Erik Larson.
  • Rhetorical Analysis of Presidential Speeches: A Focus on Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address.
  • The Role of Personal Identity in Non-Fiction: Roxane Gay's 'Hunger.'
  • Gender and Feminism in Non-Fiction: A Study of Roxane Gay's 'Bad Feminist.'
  • The Influence of Historical Documents on Contemporary Non-Fiction Writing.
  • The Impact of Travel Writing: Paul Theroux's 'The Great Railway Bazaar.'
  • Analyzing the Use of Symbolism in Non-Fiction: 'Into the Wild' by Jon Krakauer.
  • The Role of Autobiography in Non-Fiction: Maya Angelou's 'I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings.'

Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics on Fiction

  • The Symbolism of the 'Green Light' in F. Scott Fitzgerald's 'The Great Gatsby.'
  • The Role of Foreshadowing in Edgar Allan Poe's 'The Tell-Tale Heart.'
  • Character Development in J.D. Salinger's 'The Catcher in the Rye.'
  • The Use of Irony in Mark Twain's 'The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.'
  • Exploring the Theme of Identity in J.K. Rowling's 'Harry Potter' Series.
  • Narrative Structure in Gabriel Garcia Marquez's 'One Hundred Years of Solitude.'
  • Analyzing the Impact of Setting in William Golding's 'Lord of the Flies.'
  • The Motif of Darkness in Joseph Conrad's 'Heart of Darkness.'
  • The Symbolism of the Mockingbird in Harper Lee's 'To Kill a Mockingbird.'
  • The Role of Allegory in George Orwell's 'Animal Farm.'
  • Character Transformation in Jane Austen's 'Pride and Prejudice.'
  • The Use of Stream of Consciousness in Virginia Woolf's 'Mrs. Dalloway.'
  • Exploring the Theme of Alienation in Franz Kafka's 'The Metamorphosis.'
  • The Symbolism of the 'Red Room' in Charlotte Brontë's 'Jane Eyre.'"
  • Analyzing the Impact of Dialogue in Arthur Miller's 'The Crucible.'
  • The Use of Magical Realism in Isabel Allende's 'The House of the Spirits.'
  • Character Archetypes in J.R.R. Tolkien's 'The Lord of the Rings.'
  • The Role of Time in Kurt Vonnegut's 'Slaughterhouse-Five.'
  • Exploring the Theme of Love and Sacrifice in Nicholas Sparks' Novels.
  • The Symbolism of the Conch Shell in William Golding's 'Lord of the Flies.'
  • The Use of Motif and Imagery in Toni Morrison's 'Beloved.'
  • Character Motivation in Fyodor Dostoevsky's 'Crime and Punishment.'
  • The Role of Irony in Oscar Wilde's 'The Picture of Dorian Gray.'
  • The Symbolism of the 'White Whale' in Herman Melville's 'Moby-Dick.'
  • Narrative Perspective in Margaret Atwood's 'The Handmaid's Tale.'
  • The Use of Foil Characters in Shakespearean Tragedies.
  • Exploring the Theme of War in Erich Maria Remarque's 'All Quiet on the Western Front.'
  • Character Conflict and Growth in John Steinbeck's 'Of Mice and Men.'
  • The Symbolism of the 'Raven' in Edgar Allan Poe's Poem.
  • The Role of Imagery in F. Scott Fitzgerald's 'The Great Gatsby.'

Latest Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics

  • Analyzing the Rhetoric of Social Media Influencers: Strategies, Impact, and Ethics.
  • The Use of Visual Rhetoric in Political Campaign Advertisements in the Digital Age.
  • Rhetorical Analysis of Climate Change Advocacy Speeches by Greta Thunberg.
  • The Role of Memes in Shaping Online Discourse: A Rhetorical Examination.
  • The Rhetorical Techniques of Podcast Hosts in Engaging and Persuading Audiences.
  • Analyzing the Rhetoric of Environmental Activism in Contemporary Documentaries.
  • The Influence of Rhetorical Appeals in Modern Political Debates and Discourse.
  • The Rhetoric of Fake News: Analysing Manipulative Techniques and Their Impact.
  • Exploring Rhetorical Strategies in Contemporary Stand-up Comedy.
  • Rhetorical Analysis of TED Talks: Persuasion and Storytelling in Public Speaking.
  • The Rhetorical Framing of Social Justice Movements in the Media.
  • Analyzing the Persuasive Techniques in Modern Advertising: From Super Bowl Commercials to Digital Campaigns.
  • The Rhetorical Strategies Used by Activists in the Black Lives Matter Movement.
  • The Role of Visual Rhetoric in Environmental Awareness Campaigns.
  • Rhetorical Analysis of Celebrity Speeches and Their Influence on Social Issues.
  • The Rhetoric of Health and Wellness Influencers: Ethical Considerations.
  • Analysing Rhetorical Devices in Contemporary Pop Songs and Music Videos.
  • Rhetorical Analysis of Branding and Brand Storytelling in the Fashion Industry.
  • The Rhetoric of Online Product Reviews: Persuasion and Consumer Behavior.
  • Analyzing the Rhetoric of Political Satire Shows in the Current Political Climate.
  • The Use of Rhetorical Appeals in Debates Surrounding Technology Ethics.
  • Rhetorical Analysis of Environmental Policy Speeches by World Leaders.
  • The Rhetorical Techniques Used in Contemporary Self-Help Literature.
  • Analysing Rhetorical Strategies in Online Gaming Communities and Esports.
  • The Rhetoric of Crisis Communication: Examining Responses to Global Events.
  • Rhetorical Analysis of Anti-vaccine Movement Arguments and Their Impact.
  • The Rhetoric of Conspiracy Theories: Persuasion and Disinformation.
  • Analyzing the Rhetorical Appeals of Influential Science Communicators.
  • Rhetorical Strategies in Contemporary Food and Nutrition Debates.
  • The Role of Rhetoric in Shaping Public Opinion on Artificial Intelligence and Robotics.

Why Is Rhetorical Analysis Important?

Rhetorical analysis is important because it helps us in:

1. Critical Thinking

When you analyze rhetoric, it encourages critical reflection thinking. You have to examine the various strategies used to persuade, inform, or entertain. This boosts your critical thinking abilities.

2. Effective Communication

Studying effective rhetoric can improve your own communication skills. It helps you convey ideas more persuasively. You can easily break the ice and be a better communicator in other verticals of life.

3. Media Literacy

It helps individuals discern the quality and intentions of various messages in media, politics, and advertising.

4. Cultural Awareness

Rhetorical analysis reveals cultural values and biases embedded in messages. This is crucial in fostering cultural awareness.

5. Decision Making

Understanding persuasive techniques aids in making informed decisions. Students can easily recognize data and evidence that seems manipulative or biased. Thus, they can filter those out and make informed decisions.

If you still have some queries about how rhetorical analysis essays are important to us, we are just a call away.

How to Analyse Rhetorical Strategies in An Essay or Speech?

Follow this step-by-step guide to analyze rhetorical strategies in an essay or speech –

  • Read the Essay
  • Identify the Rhetorical Strategies
  • Analyse Word Choice
  • Examine Sentence Structure and Syntax
  • Identify Persuasive Techniques
  • Evaluate Organisation
  • Consider Audience
  • Assess Effectiveness
  • Provide Evidence and Examples
  • Write Your Analysis

We can help you in all these processes and guide you to correctly analyze any rhetorical essays.

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120 Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics

When examining a non-fiction piece of content, be it literature, advertising, media promotions, or some other element of the written word, the term rhetorical analysis essay may be used.

This essay format examines the creator’s intentions and techniques to persuade the audience of a particular course of action or a specific train of thought. The rhetorical analysis essay also looks at how this message is delivered from the standpoint of style and tone, as well as other elements, including statistics, facts, anecdotes, and figures.

In its simplest definition, a rhetorical analysis essay is an article that has been written to examine the effectiveness of a content creator’s techniques and whether those techniques reach the intended goal.

Beyond the strict formatting and stylistic writing elements mandatory for this type of essay writing, students may find themselves challenged to create a topic that is interesting and relevant to analyze.

However, this list of 120 rhetorical analysis essay topics along with a guide on the critical elements of writing a rhetorical analysis essay will ensure that every student assigned this task can complete it successfully.

A Guide to Writing an Effective Essay on Rhetoric

One definition of rhetoric refers to the art or system of writing and speaking that seeks to persuade or convince an audience using effective, productive techniques.

A rhetorical analysis essay examines Aristotle’s three modes of persuasion: ethos, pathos, and logos, to determine which was used most effectively.

Ethos examines an author’s character and credibility. In a rhetorical analysis essay, the writer must assess whether or not the author has established trustworthiness through personal appearance and lifestyle choices, as well as educational background and career accomplishments.

This element of rhetoric is also known as logic. It examines how effectively someone’s argument makes sense to an audience. This includes statistics, facts, figures, and other information meant to support a central thesis.

This element of rhetoric involves an author’s use of emotionally-charged language to sway the audience. This includes the use of anecdotes, analogies, humor, and other details that tug at the audience’s emotions as opposed to their logic or reasoning skills.

One or all of these elements may be used in a rhetorical analysis essay, but the writer needs to determine which was used most effectively.

How to Write a Rhetorical Essay?

When it comes to writing a rhetorical analysis essay, students will want to ensure that they cover the five aspects of a rhetorical situation:

The writer of any rhetorical analysis essay must determine the purpose of their message and whether or not it has been accomplished through their use of ethos, logos, and pathos in the target audience’s best interest.

2. Audience

The writer of a rhetorical analysis essay must also assess their audience and what that audience may understand or expect based on prior socialization and knowledge of the topic.

The writer of a rhetorical analysis essay must also determine what genre they are writing in, be it argumentative or expository. This dictates the type of information they will need to include in their essay and which elements of rhetoric they may focus on most effectively.

The writer of a rhetorical analysis essay must establish credibility and trustworthiness. This is done by establishing one’s ethos and refuting opposing arguments to show that their argument is the most logical and well-reasoned.

What are the means of persuasion used in the essay? The writer must establish credibility by using logical arguments and evidence to support their claims and separate themselves from the opposition through refutation and deflection.

Outlining a Rhetorical Analysis Essay

Rather than try to write a rhetorical analysis essay from scratch, it’s best to create an outline of the main points that will need to be covered in the essay to ensure that the writing stays on track. Outlines should include:

  • Introduction – Designed to hook the reader by providing context and background information for the topic. This should also include a strong thesis that will be supported throughout the rest of the essay.
  • Body – Includes three to five paragraphs that support that thesis with logical arguments and empirical evidence.
  • Conclusion – A brief paragraph summarizes the main idea and relates it to the introduction for a nice clean finish. It should end with a powerful or thought-provoking statement of the overall impact of the non-fictional content being examined.

With the fundamentals of a rhetorical analysis essay above and the many rhetorical analysis essay topics below, students should be well equipped to write a stellar rhetorical analysis essay.

Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics About English & Literature

  • Shakespeare’s use imagery to support theme and mood in “Othello”
  • The impact of the narrator’s tone on meaning and tone in Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird
  • The use of foreshadowing in “Frankenstein”
  • How Shakespeare uses the dramatic structure to influence the meaning and tone of Romeo and Juliet
  • How Edgar Allan Poe builds suspense in The Tell-Tale Heart
  • The use of irony in The Great Gatsby by Fitzgerald
  • Analyzing the mood created through imagery used in Taming of the Shrew by Shakespeare
  • The effect of symbolism in “Catcher in the Rye”
  • How J. D. Salinger uses language to influence meaning and tone in The Catcher in the Rye
  • Analyzing how William Blake creates a mood through imagery in Auguries of Innocence
  • Menippean satire used in Tristram Shandy by Laurence Sterne
  • The use of symbolism in “The Picture of Dorian Gray”
  • Disillusionment and cynicism encountered through dialogue and setting in The Great Gatsby
  • Irony used to reveal theme and tone in Animal Farm by George Orwell
  • How Louisa May Alcott establishes a mood and tone with descriptive language in “Little Women”
  • Analyzing symbolism throughout Hamlet by Shakespeare
  • The effect of setting on tone and mood in Great Expectations by Charles Dickens
  • Language used to create a tone of alienation in 1984 by George Orwell
  • Foreshadowing in Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson
  • Symbolism throughout The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
  • The effects of genetic modification on individuality in Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
  • A comparison of individualism vs. collectivism in novels “Fahrenheit 451” and The Giver by Lois Lowry
  • Genetic engineering’s impact on identity in Gattaca by Andrew Niccol
  • Impact of the dramatic structure on tone and mood in The Crucible, Macbeth, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Hamlet by William Shakespeare
  • How Stephen Crane uses symbolism to develop theme and tone in his short story “The Open Boat”
  • The symbolism used to create atmosphere in “The Tell-Tale Heart” by Edgar Allan Poe
  • The symbolism used to enhance tone and mood in Hamlet by William Shakespeare
  • How Dr. Seuss uses word choice, imagery, and rhyme to create a tone of whimsy in Green Eggs and Ham
  • Analyzing the use of hyperbole throughout Animal Farm by George Orwell
  • A comparison of the tone and mood created in “To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee and “1984” by George Orwell
  • Use of symbolism to enhance theme in Nightfall by Isaac Asimov

Rhetorical Essay Topics About Famous Speeches

  • Rhetorical analysis of “Mr. Gorbachev, Tear Down This Wall!”
  • The impact of King’s rhetorical strategies on the Civil Rights Movement
  • Rhetorical Analysis on Ronald Reagan Speech on Challenger Disaster
  • How does Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s rhetoric build tension to create an aura of despair for African Americans in his “I Have a Dream” speech?
  • Analyzing the impact of Winston Churchill’s rhetoric on England during World War II
  • Rhetorical Analysis of Patrick Henry’s “Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death!” Speech
  • How effective was Lincoln’s use of logos, ethos, and pathos in his Second Inaugural Address?
  • The influence of Elizabeth Cady Stanton’s “Solitude of Self” speech on the women’s rights movement
  • The effectiveness of John F. Kennedy’s inaugural address in creating a new generation of American citizens
  • How effective was Malcolm X’s “Message to the Grass Roots” speech in gaining black nationalistic pride?
  • How does JFK contribute to the Cold War rhetorical strategies used in his Address at American University?
  • Analysis on George W. Bush’s address to Congress after September 11, 2001
  • George H. W. Bush’s speech on the Gulf War being a New World Order
  • Analyzing Barack Obama’s 2008 Democratic National Convention Speech
  • Analyzing Donald Trump’s Inaugural Address as President of the United States
  • How does Barack Obama differ from Donald Trump in his use of rhetorical strategies?
  • What makes the most effective presidential inaugural address, and why do you believe so?
  • The use of inflection throughout Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech
  • Structure and content of the Gettysburg Address by Abraham Lincoln
  • The effect of Taft’s “A Time for Action” speech on his campaign
  • How effective was Woodrow Wilson’s “Fourteen Points” speech in ending World War I?
  • Presidential rhetoric used to push America into WWI, WWII, and Vietnam
  • Using a rhetorical analysis of a presidential speech to analyze the effectiveness of a president’s administration
  • Presidential rhetoric used to justify U.S. involvement in WWII
  • How effective was FDR’s use of pathos and ethos in his “Day of Infamy” speech?
  • Rhetorical analysis of President Reagan’s “Star Wars” speech and its effect on the Cold War
  • The effect of FDR’s “Four Freedoms” speech and whether it achieved its goal
  • Analyzing the effectiveness of President Nixon’s Vietnamization program

Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics About T.V. & Film

  • How effective is the symbolism used in Steven Spielberg’s “Saving Private Ryan?”
  • A rhetorical analysis of Andrew Niccol’s “Lord of War” film
  • Rhetorical Analysis of Stanley Kubrick’s “Dr. Strangelove”
  • The effectiveness of Spielberg’s incorporation of the Holocaust into his films through a rhetorical analysis
  • Rhetorical analysis on the symbolism in Wes Anderson’s “The Grand Budapest Hotel”
  • The symbolism used to create atmosphere in the opening scene of Ridley Scott’s “Alien”
  • Rhetorical Analysis of the symbolism in Christopher Nolan’s “Interstellar”
  • The effect on the Cold War brought about by Hans Zimmer’s score for Christopher Nolan’s Interstellar
  • What is Spielberg trying to communicate about American values through his use of symbolism in E.T.?
  • A rhetorical analysis of the effectiveness of “The Hunger Games” film series in communicating its message to society
  • Rhetorical Analysis on Spielberg’s use of symbolism in “War Horse”
  • How does Pixar’s movie Up contribute to the discussion over euthanasia?
  • Rhetorical analysis on how Shrek communicates modern values through its story and symbolism
  • Using a rhetorical analysis to determine whether or not the symbolism in “300” is empowering for women
  • How does Tarantino’s use of violence contribute to his films’ success?
  • The effect of negative imagery as used by Tyler Perry within the opening scene of “For Colored Girls.”
  • The impact on society from Quentin Tarantino’s use of violence within his films
  • The effect on society from the impact Quentin Tarantino’s use of violence has had on Hollywood.
  • Analysis of how effective it is for Tyler Perry to include dialogue and monologue within his films
  • How does the opening scene of “12 Years a Slave” contribute to the discussion about race relations in America?
  • A rhetorical analysis of Quentin Tarantino’s dialogue in “Pulp Fiction”
  • The effect that the symbolism in David Fincher’s “Fight Club” film has on society
  • How does art house director Terrence Malick communicate the effects of war through a rhetorical analysis of his film, The Thin Red Line?
  • Rhetorical Analysis on Terrence Malick’s use of symbolism in “The Thin Red Line”
  • Rhetorical analysis of Quentin Tarantino’s view on violence as communicated through his films
  • Analyzing the impact that the film, American Sniper, had on society regarding the War on Terror
  • Analyzing how effective David Fincher is at directing horror films through a rhetorical analysis of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.
  • A rhetorical analysis of Tarantino’s dialogue in Django Unchained and its effect on race relations in America
  • The effectiveness of David Fincher’s use of violence as a plot device in “Gone Girl”

Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics About Advertising & Marketing

  • How does the symbolism in Apple’s 1984 commercial influence its effectiveness?
  • A rhetorical analysis of Chrysler’s Super Bowl ad, “Halftime in America”
  • The symbolism used to communicate ideas about marriage in Nike’s 2013 commercial, “The Next Wave”
  • The effect that the symbolisms used in Nike’s “Unlimited” commercial have on society
  • How does Honda use rhetoric to influence the American public through its Fitnation campaign?
  • Analyzing Adidas’ World Cup 2014 ad and how it works to sell Germany as a nation of winners.
  • Using a rhetorical analysis to determine what effect the symbolism used in Nike’s “I am Tiger Woods” commercial has on society
  • A rhetorical analysis of how the strategy used by Beats by Dre in their #HearWhatYouWant campaign works to influence the public
  • A rhetorical analysis of the effectiveness for McDonald’s in its “I’m Lovin’ it” campaign
  • Analyzing how Skittles uses symbolism in its commercial entitled, “#TasteTheRainbow.”
  • A rhetorical analysis of Burger King’s use of a social media hashtag, #EatLikeAndy to market its product.
  • The effectiveness of the symbolism used in Adidas’ “All In For #BETRUE” campaign
  • Analyzing how effective Burger King’s use of social media was in their “Whopper Sacrifice” campaign
  • The effect that the use of Sean Bean as a spokesperson has on Samsung’s product, Galaxy Note 3.
  • How effective is Red Bull at using symbolism to market its product?

Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics About Arts & Entertainment

  • Analysis of how effective Iggy Pop is as a frontman in the music video “The Passenger”
  • Rhetorical analysis on what makes Nirvana’s performance in “Smells Like Teen Spirit” so significant and influential
  • A rhetorical analysis of Jay-Z’s use of symbolism, imagery, and irony to communicate ideas in his music video for “Big Pimpin”
  • An analysis of how effective Tupac’s use of symbolism and rhetoric was in “Brenda’s Got a Baby” to communicate what life was like for African American women.
  • Analyzing the effectiveness of Kendrick Lamar’s use of language and metaphor in his song, “Swimming Pools (Drank)”
  • Rhetorical analysis on the symbolism and irony present in Jay-Z’s music video “99 Problems”
  • The use of irony found in Beyonce’s song, “Partition”
  • Analyzing how effective U2 was at using lyrics to communicate ideas about politics and justice.
  • How does director David Lynch communicate violence and evil through a rhetorical analysis of his film, Blue Velvet?
  • The effectiveness of Tupac’s use of irony and symbolism in his song, “Changes”
  • A rhetorical analysis on how effective Antonio Canova was at communicating ideas about the past through a statue commissioned by Napoleon.
  • How does Van Gogh’s Starry Night communicate ideas about the interaction between light, darkness, and the world as a whole?
  • A rhetorical analysis of how effective Prometheus Rising is at communicating its point through symbolism and irony.
  • How effective is The Beatles’ song “Eleanor Rigby” at using symbolism to make its point about life and loneliness?
  • An analysis of Iron Maiden’s music video for “Number of the Beast” and how it works to communicate its point through symbolism and imagery.
  • A rhetorical analysis on the effectiveness of using sexuality as a plot device in “Pretty Woman.”
  • A rhetorical analysis on the use of irony and humor that is found in Miley Cyrus’ song, “We Can’t Stop.”

Rhetorical essays can effectively teach students how to analyze, understand and separate rhetorical elements of writing, speaking, and presenting the material. Be sure to combine these essay topics with the writing guide above to ensure that you get the grade you need on your rhetorical essay to pass your course and earn a degree.

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160+ Best Rhetorical Analysis Topics

Rhetorical analysis essay focuses on assessing the method used for delivering a message. This assignment isn’t about giving an opinion on the topic. The purpose is to analyze how the author presents the argument and whether or not they succeeded. Keep reading to find out more strategies and prompts for a rhetorical essay.

This article will help college and high school students choose a unique topic for a rhetorical analysis essay. You can analyze books, speeches, movies, and even advertisements. To succeed, choose a subject that seems more familiar to you. And keep in mind that our custom writing team is always ready to help you with any assignment.

  • 🔝 Top 10 Topics
  • 💬 Famous Speeches
  • 📚 Non-fiction
  • 📺 Advertisement
  • 🎥 Movie Monologues
  • ✅ Writing Guide

🔝 Top 10 Rhetorical Analysis Topics

  • Consumerism in Fight Club
  • Dangerous obsession in The Birthmark
  • Main rhetorical features of The Lottery
  • Rhetorical devices in Song of Solomon
  • Main rhetorical devices in The Scarlet Letter
  • What made the I Have a Dream speech so powerful?
  • Raven symbolism in Edgar Allan Poe’s The Raven
  • The significance of the I Am Prepared to Die speech
  • How does censorship affect society in Fahrenheit 451 ?
  • Inequality in Priyanka Chopra’s speech Full Power of Women

✍️ Rhetorical Topics on Fiction

Fiction is written from imagination. Like any literature, fiction has its way of communicating a message. You may choose to analyze your personal response to the text. Or, study its background and think about the author’s intention. The following list will inspire ideas for a great rhetorical analysis paper topic:

  • How is the theme of war changes presented in The Things They Carry?
  • Analyze the main rhetorical features of The Great Gatsby .
  • The simple language in All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr.
  • How J.D. Salinger reveals the life of a teenager in The Catcher in the Rye .
  • The narrative form of Millenium Hall .
  • How Erin Morgenstern creates diverse characters in The Night Circus .
  • The theme of justice in The Heretic’s Daughter .

Aristotle quote.

  • Language of mystery in The Secret Life of Violet Grant .
  • How is the character development presented in The Alchemist ?
  • Voice of the author in The Fault in Our Stars by John Green.
  • The conflict between characters in The Poet X .
  • Empathy in Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?
  • Analyze Prudence Shen’s writing techniques in Nothing Can Possibly Go Wrong .
  • Love and crisis in Exit West by Mohsin Hamid.
  • How is the theme of friendship delivered in Code Name Verity ?
  • Lord of the Flies : civilization vs. savagery.
  • The theme of elitism in One Hundred Years of Solitude .
  • Why John Steinbeck emphasizes dreams in Of Mice and Men .
  • Rhetorical devices used in The Sense of an Ending .
  • Lincoln in the Bardo : reflections on humanism.
  • The language of shame in The Vegetarian by Han Kang.
  • Behavior in The Slipover Sweater by Jesse Stuart.

💬 Rhetorical Analysis Topics: Speeches

There are quite a few legendary speeches in history. If you want to analyze one, answer these questions:

  • What’s the objective of the speaker?
  • What is the historical background of the speech?
  • What could be the audience’s expectations?

Start thinking about your thesis statement as you select one of the topics below:

  • Rhetorical devices in The Campaigns of Alexander by Alexander the Great, 326 BC.
  • Persuasion in The Third Philippic by Demosthenes, 342 BC.
  • Expressive means in Funeral Oration by Pericles, 431 BC.
  • Explore the way Theodore Roosevelt uses rhetoric in The Man with the Muck-Rake, 1906.
  • Rhetorical analysis of Pope Urban II’s Speech at Clermont, 1095.
  • Queen Elizabeth’s intentions in Spanish Armada speech, 1588.
  • Rhetorical devices used in George Washington’s Resignation Speech, 1783.
  • How Al Gore persuades the audience in Nobel Prize Speech, 2007.
  • Expressive means used in Ain’t I A Woman? by Sojourner Truth, 1851.
  • Emotional appeal in Chief Joseph’s Surrender Speech, 1877.
  • Historical context of Freedom or Death by Emmeline Pankhurst, 1913.
  • Ways to engage the audience in Franklin D Roosevelt’s Inauguration Speech, 1933.
  • Rhetorical devices used in We Shall Fight on the Beaches Speech by Winston Churchill, 1940.
  • The main objective of Gettysburg Address by Abraham Lincoln, 1863.
  • Heroism in Charles de Gaulle’s The Appeal of 18 June, 1940.
  • Emotional language in William Lyon Phelps’s The Pleasure of Books, 1933.
  • How does Mahatma Gandhi persuade the listener in Quit India, 1942?
  • Main rhetorical features of I Have a Dream speech by Martin Luther King, Jr., 1963.
  • What expressive means does Nelson Mandela use in I Am the First Accused, 1964?
  • How John F. Kennedy engages with the audience in his Inauguration Speech, 1961.
  • The context of Address to the Nation on the Challenger by Ronald Reagan, 1986.
  • Gratitude in Lou Gehrig’s Farewell to Baseball speech, 1939.

📜 Topics for Rhetorical Analysis: Poetry

There are so many unique things a poem can convey. Analyzing it will require multiple careful readings. In your essay, answer the following questions:

  • Who is the speaker in the poem?
  • Does the title influence your idea of the meaning?
  • Is there anything peculiar about the poem’s rhythm and structure?

Analyzing poetry.

  • Analyze the use of personification in William Butler Yeats ‘ Brown Penny .
  • The narrator in Allen Ginsberg’s America .
  • How Langston Hughes uses emotional appeal in Let America Be America Again .
  • Regret in The Mother by Gwendolyn Brooks.
  • The key allegories used in Daddy by Sylvia Plath .
  • The mood of And the Moon and the Stars and the World by Charles Bukowski.
  • William Blake’s A Poison Tree : themes of anger and darkness.
  • What rhetorical devices does Walt Whitman use in O, Captain! My Captain!
  • Symbolism in Walt Whitman’s Crossing Brooklyn Ferry.
  • Faces of love in A Red, Red Rose by Robert Burns .
  • Analyze the role of contrast in I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou .
  • How does Stephen Crane characterize war in Fast Rode the Knight ?
  • The function of street language in Dream Deferred by Langston Hughes.
  • Self-acceptance in Maya Angelou’s Phenomenal Woman .
  • The theme of nature in Mary Oliver’s August .
  • Unorthodox punctuation in I Carry Your Heart with Me by E. E. Cummings .
  • To You by Walt Whitman : what is the function of the title?
  • The setting in A Dream within a Dream by Edgar Allan Poe.
  • Who is Emily Dickinson’s There is another Sky addressed to?
  • Analyze Shel Silverstein’s irony in Messy Room .
  • The speaker in Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening by Robert Frost.
  • Analyze main rhetorical devices used in W. H. Auden’s Funeral Blues .

📰 Articles for Rhetorical Analysis

To analyze an article from a rhetorical perspective, try reading it with a purpose. It will help you determine the author’s main point. Besides, you can consider analyzing the article title and its role in persuasion.

Analyzing an article.

  • People vs. nature in The Killer in the Pool by Tim Zimmerman.
  • What are the arguments presented by David Grann in The Mark of a Masterpiece?
  • A thief’s double life in Joshua Bearman’s Art of the Steal .
  • Analyze the narration in Hope. Change. Reality. by Wil S. Hylton.
  • William Finnegan’s In the Name of the Law and its emotional appeal.
  • Persuasive devices used in Mississippi’s Corrections Reform by John Buntin.
  • Politics in Kenneth Jost’s article Unrest in the Arab World .
  • Power fantasy in Video Games: the Addiction by Tom Bissell.
  • The theme of prejudice in Forrest Wilder’s He Who Casts the First Stone .
  • Credibility in The Little Pill That Could Cure Alcoholism by James Medd.
  • Ways to connect with the audience used in Solitude and Leadership by William Deresiewicz.
  • The way Zach Zorich uses rhetorical devices in Should We Clone Neanderthals ?
  • Acceptance in Autism’s First Child by John Donvan and Karen Zucker.
  • How motherhood is presented in Scott Carney’s Inside India’s Rent-A-Womb Business .
  • The theme of hope in Are You Sure You Want to Quit the World? by Nadya Labi.
  • Howard Jacobson’s On Taking Comic Novels Seriously : what helps to persuade the reader?
  • How Jonah Weiner uses social media in Kanye West Has a Goblet .
  • What rhetorical devices Beth Kowitt most prominently uses in Inside the Secret World of Trader Joe’s ?
  • The theme of success in Seven Years as a Freelance Writer by Richard Morgan.
  • Consumerism in Why Stuff Is Not Salvation by Anne Quinden.
  • Analyze the use of humor in Rick Bragg’s article The Guiltless Pleasur e.
  • Ways of engaging with the audience in The Man the White House Wakes Up to by Mark Leibovich.

📚 Rhetorical Topics in Non-Fiction

The term “non-fiction” refers to writings based on facts. When analyzing non-fiction, research the context surrounding the text. It is also important to pay attention to the way the text is written. Think about the author’s objective and who the target readers are. This will help you carry out a thorough rhetorical analysis.

  • Point out the main rhetorical devices used in A Brief History of Time .
  • The theme of racism in I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings .
  • Abuse and sympathy in In Cold Blood .
  • War and trauma in John Hersey’s Hiroshima .
  • How the theme of grief is discussed in H Is for Hawk .
  • Analyze the main rhetorical features in Isak Dinesen’s Out of Africa .
  • Voice of the narrator in Farley Mowat’s Never Cry Wolf .
  • How Nick Hornby explores fandom in Fever Pitch .
  • The emotional appeal in Endurance: Shackleton’s Incredible Voyage .
  • Elie Wiesel’s Night : the loss of innocence.
  • What makes M.F.K. Fisher’s How to Cook a Wolf inspiring?
  • Discuss the title’s function in A Moveable Feast .
  • The theme of overcoming in Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow.
  • What’s the role of setting in Dreams from My Father : a Story of Race and Inheritance?
  • How to Win Friends and Influence People : what persuasive devices are used in it?
  • The theme of grief in The Year of Magical Thinking .
  • Life on the Mississippi : past and present.
  • How Marshall McLuhan explores communication in The Medium is the Message .
  • Persuasion in Silent Spring .

Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring.

  • The Right Stuff : the themes of courage and heroism.
  • What makes Anne Frank: the Diary of a Young Girl terrifying?
  • Emotional appeal in Goodbye to All That .

📺 Rhetorical Analysis Topics: Advertisements

The primary purpose of any ad is persuasion. A good advertisement establishes the connection between the product and the consumer.

Pay attention to the following points:

  • What’s the overall impression of the advertisement?
  • What’s the primary audience?
  • Are the rhetorical devices used effectively?

You can write an interesting rhetorical analysis essay based on one of the advertisements from the following list:

  • Dunkin’ Donuts: America Runs on Dunkin.
  • California Milk Processor Board: Got Milk?
  • Lay’s: Betcha Can’t Eat Just One.
  • Red Bull: Red Bull gives you wings.
  • The Mosaic Company: We Help the World Grow the Food It Needs.
  • Meow Mix: Tastes So Good, Cats Ask for It by Name.
  • Nike : There Is No Finish Line.
  • Coca Cola: Friendly Twist.
  • M&M: Melts in Your Mouth, Not in Your Hands.
  • BMW: Designed for Driving Pleasure.
  • McDonald’s: The Simpler, the Better.
  • Taco Bell: Think Outside the Bun.
  • L’Oréal: Because You’re Worth It.
  • Gillette: The Best a Man Can Get.
  • Apple : Think Different.
  • Panasonic: Ideas for Life.
  • Chanel No.5 The Film.
  • Dollar Shave Club: Shave Time. Shave Money.
  • Capital One: What’s in Your Wallet?
  • Harley Davidson: All for Freedom. Freedom for All.
  • Levi’s: Quality Never Goes out of Style.
  • Disneyland: The Happiest Place on Earth.

🎥 Movie Monologues: Topics for Rhetorical Analysis

In some movies , a character gives a speech that captures everyone’s attention. Making a rhetorical analysis of the movie monologue will require making observations, such as:

  • Characterize the speaker and their intentions.
  • Describe the scene where the monologue takes place.
  • Pay attention to the vocabulary and the tone of voice.

Here are a few famous movie monologues that can fit well into your rhetorical essay.

  • Chris Evans in Avengers: Endgame .
  • Anne Hathaway in The Princess Diaries .
  • Octavia Spencer in The Help .
  • Sam Worthington in Avatar .
  • Mel Gibson in Braveheart .
  • Jennifer Lawrence in The Hunger Games : Catching Fire .
  • Gregory Peck in To Kill A Mockingbird .
  • Samuel L. Jackson in Pulp Fiction .

Ingmar Bergman quote.

  • Sylvester Stallone in Rocky Balboa .
  • Meryl Streep in Sophie’s Choice .
  • Tom Wilkinson in Michael Clayton .
  • Ellen Burstyn in Requiem for a Dream .
  • Morgan Freeman in The Shawshank Redemption .
  • Charlie Chaplin in The Great Dictator .
  • Charlize Theron in Monster .
  • Wes Bentley in American Beauty .
  • Robin Williams in Good Will Hunting .
  • Viggo Mortensen in Return of the King .
  • Salvatore Corsitta in The Godfather .
  • Angela Lansbury in The Manchurian Candidate .
  • Laurence Fishburne in The Matrix .
  • Viola Davis in Doubt .

✅ Rhetorical Analysis Writing Guide

To carry out a rhetorical analysis, consider the rhetorical situation. Use what you know about the author and their intentions. A good rhetorical essay includes not only analysis, but also description and evaluation of the text.

Rhetorical situation.

But first, outline your essay using these steps:

  • Introduction/summary. Briefly summarize the text.
  • Example of a thesis: In his book The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, Mark Twain shows America through a child’s eyes. The social commentary is made effective through the use of irony and regional dialect.
  • Ethos , which refers to the author’s credibility.
  • Pathos , or the emotional appeal.
  • Logos , which means persuasion by showing evidence.
  • Kairos , referring to the timing.
  • Stasis , or the situation when the argument “gets stuck” due to the opinion difference.
  • Conclusion. Make a final assessment of the text and review your argument.

We hope this article helped you find a good topic for a rhetorical analysis essay. We also hope that it helped you understand how to write it perfectly.

Good luck with your assignment!

Further reading:

  • A List of 175 Interesting Cultural Topics to Write About
  • 200 Pop Culture Topics for an A+ Essay
  • 150+ Excellent Narrative Essay Topics
  • Good Book Report: How to Write, Topics, 32 Tips and Ideas
  • 260 Good Descriptive Essay Topics and Writing Tips

🔍 References

  • Rhetorical Analysis: Miami University
  • The Best Film Monologues Ever And Why You Have To See Them: New York Film Academy
  • 27 Companies With Really Catchy Slogans & Brand Taglines: HubSpot.com
  • Sample Ad Analysis: Indian Hills Community College
  • 50 Essential Non-fiction Books You’ll Actually Read: AbeBooks
  • Rhetorical Analysis: Texas A&M University
  • Top 100 Speeches of the 20th Century by Rank: American Rhetoric
  • The Rhetorical Analysis of Poetry: Edutopia
  • Rhetorical Situations: Purdue University
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  • Rhetorical Analysis

Argument Analysis

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Sometimes, the best way to learn how to write a good argument is to start by analyzing other arguments. When you do this, you get to see what works, what doesn’t, what strategies another author uses, what structures seem to work well and why, and more.

Therefore, even though this section on argument analysis is one of the last lessons in this area, your professor may have you start here before you draft a single word of your own essay.

In the pages that follow, you will learn about analyzing arguments for both content and rhetorical strategies. The content analysis may come a little easier for you, but the rhetorical analysis is extremely important. To become a good writer, we must develop the language of writing and learn how to use that language to talk about the “moves” other writers make.

When we understand the decisions other writers make and why, it helps us make more informed decisions as writers. We can move from being the “accidental” writer, where we might do well but are not sure why, to being a “purposeful” writer, where we have an awareness of the impact our writing has on our audience at all levels.

Thinking About Content

Content analysis of an argument is really just what it seems—looking closely at the content in an argument. When you’re analyzing an argument for content, you’re looking at things like claims, evidence to support those claims, and if that evidence makes sense.

The Toulmin method is a great tool for analyzing the content of an argument. In fact, it was developed as a tool for analyzing the content of an argument. Using the different concepts we learn in the Toulmin model, we are able to examine an argument by thinking about what claim is being made, what evidence is being used to support that claim, the warrants behind that evidence, and more.

When you analyze an argument, there is a good chance your professor will have you review and use the Toulmin information provided in the Excelsior OWL.

However, the lessons you have learned about logical fallacies will also help you analyze the content of an argument. You’ll want to look closely at the logic being presented in the claims and evidence. Does the logic hold up, or do you see logical fallacies? Obviously, if you see fallacies, you should really question the argument.

Thinking Rhetorically

As a part of thinking rhetorically about an argument, your professor may ask you to write a formal or informal rhetorical analysis essay. Rhetorical analysis is about “digging in” and exploring the strategies and writing style of a particular piece. Rhetorical analysis can be tricky because, chances are, you haven’t done a lot of rhetorical analysis in the past.

To add to this trickiness, you can write a rhetorical analysis of any piece of information, not just an essay. You may be asked to write a rhetorical analysis of an ad, an image, or a commercial.

The key is to start now! Rhetorical analysis is going to help you think about strategies other authors have made and how or why these strategies work or don’t work. In turn, your goal is to be more aware of these things in your own writing.

When you analyze a work rhetorically, you are going to explore the following concepts in a piece:

Before you begin to write your research paper, you should think about your audience. Your audience should have an impact on your writing. You should think about audience because, if you want to be effective, you must consider audience needs and expectations. It’s important to remember audience affects both what and how you write.

Most research paper assignments will be written with an academic audience in mind. Writing for an academic audience (your professors and peers) is one of the most difficult writing tasks because college students and faculty make up a very diverse group. It can be difficult for student writers to see outside their own experiences and to think about how other people might react to their messages.

But this kind of rhetorical thinking is necessary to effective writing. Good writers try to see their writing through the eyes of their audience. This, of course, requires a lot of flexibility as a writer, but the rewards for such thinking are great when you have a diverse group of readers interested in and, perhaps, persuaded by your writing.

Rhetorically speaking, purpose is about making decisions as a writer about why you’re writing and what you want your audience to take from your work.

There are three objectives you may have when writing a research paper.

  • To inform – When you write a research paper to inform, you’re not making an argument, but you do want to stress the importance of your topic. You might think about your purpose as educating your audience on a particular topic.
  • To persuade – When you write a research paper to persuade, your purpose should be to take a stance on your topic. You’ll want to develop a thesis statement that makes a clear assertion about some aspect of your topic.
  • To analyze – Although all research papers require some analysis, some research papers make analysis a primary purpose. So, your focus wouldn’t be to inform or persuade, but to analyze your topic. You’ll want to synthesize your research and, ideally, reach new, thoughtful conclusions based on your research.
  • TIPS! Here are a few tips when it comes to thinking about purpose. 

You must be able to move beyond the idea that you’re writing your research paper only because your professor is making you. While that may be true on some level, you must decide on a purpose based on what topic you’re researching and what you want to say about that topic.

You must decide for yourself, within the requirements of your assignment, why you’re engaging in the research process and writing a paper. Only when you do this will your writing be engaging for your audience.

Your assignment or project instructions affect purpose. If your professor gives you a formal writing assignment sheet for your research paper, it’s especially important to read very carefully through your professor’s expectations. If your professor doesn’t provide a formal assignment sheet, be prepared to ask questions about the purpose of the assignment.

Once you have considered your audience and established your purpose, it’s time to think about voice. Your voice in your writing is essentially how you sound to your audience. Voice is an important part of writing a research paper, but many students never stop to think about voice in their writing. It’s important to remember voice is relative to audience and purpose. The voice you decide to use will have a great impact on your audience.

  • Formal – When using a formal, academic or professional voice, you’ll want to be sure to avoid slang and clichés, like “the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.” You’ll want to avoid conversational tone and even contractions. So, instead of “can’t,” you would want to use “cannot.” You’ll want to think about your academic or professional audience and think about what kind of impression you want your voice to make on that audience.
  • Semi-formal – A semi-formal tone is not quite as formal as a formal, academic or professional tone. Although you would certainly want to avoid slang and clichés, you might use contractions, and you might consider a tone that is a little more conversational. Students sometimes make errors in voice, which can have a negative impact on an essay. For example, when writing researched essays for the first time, many students lose their voices entirely to research, and the essay reads more like a list of what other people have said on a particular topic than a real essay. In a research essay, you want to balance your voice with the voices from your sources.

It’s also easy to use a voice that is too informal for college writing, especially when you are just becoming familiar with academia and college expectations. 

Ultimately, thinking about your writing rhetorically will help you establish a strong, appropriate voice for your writing.

Appealing to ethos is all about using credibility, either your own as a writer or of your sources, in order to be persuasive. Essentially, ethos is about believability. Will your audience find you believable? What can you do to ensure that they do?

You can establish ethos—or credibility—in two basic ways: you can use or build your own credibility on a topic, or you can use credible sources, which, in turn, builds your credibility as a writer.

Credibility is extremely important in building an argument, so, even if you don’t have a lot of built-in credibility or experience with a topic, it’s important for you to work on your credibility by integrating the credibility of others into your argument.

Aristotle argued that ethos was the most powerful of the modes of persuasion, and while you may disagree, you can’t discount its power. After all, think about the way advertisers use ethos to get us to purchase products. Taylor Swift sells us perfume, and Peyton Manning sells us pizza. But, it’s really their fame and name they are selling.

With the power of ethos in mind, here are some strategies you can use to help build your ethos in your arguments.

If you have specific experience or education related to your issues, mention it in some way.

Appealing to pathos is about appealing to your audience’s emotions. Because people can be easily moved by their emotions, pathos is a powerful mode of persuasion. When you think about appealing to pathos, you should consider all of the potential emotions people experience. While we often see or hear arguments that appeal to sympathy or anger, appealing to pathos is not limited to these specific emotions. You can also use emotions such as humor, joy or even frustration, to note a few, in order to convince your audience.

It’s important, however, to be careful when appealing to pathos, as arguments with an overly-strong focus on emotion are not considered as credible in an academic setting. This means you could, and should, use pathos, but you have to do so carefully. An overly-emotional argument can cause you to lose your credibility as a writer.

You have probably seen many arguments based on an appeal to pathos. In fact, a large number of the commercials you see on television or the internet actually focus primarily on pathos. For example, many car commercials tap into our desire to feel special or important. They suggest that, if you drive a nice car, you will automatically be respected.

With the power of pathos in mind, here are some strategies you can use to carefully build pathos in your arguments.

  • Think about the emotions most related to your topic in order to use those emotions effectively. For example, if you’re calling for change in animal abuse laws, you would want to appeal to your audience’s sense of sympathy, possibly by providing examples of animal cruelty. If your argument is focused on environmental issues related to water conservation, you might provide examples of how water shortages affect metropolitan areas in order to appeal to your audience’s fear of a similar occurrence.
  • In an effort to appeal to pathos, use examples to illustrate your position. Just be sure the examples you share are credible and can be verified.
  • In academic arguments, be sure to balance appeals to pathos with appeals to logos (which will be explored on the next page) in order to maintain your ethos or credibility as a writer.
  • When presenting evidenced based on emotion, maintain an even tone of voice. If you sound too emotional, you might lose your audience’s respect.

Logos is about appealing to your audience’s logical side. You have to think about what makes sense to your audience and use that as you build your argument. As writers, we appeal to logos by presenting a line of reasoning in our arguments that is logical and clear. We use evidence, such as statistics and factual information, when we appeal to logos.

In order to develop strong appeals to logos, we have to avoid faulty logic. Faulty logic can be anything from assuming one event caused another to making blanket statements based on little evidence. Logical fallacies should always be avoided. We will explore logical fallacies in another section.

Appeals to logos are an important part of academic writing, but you will see them in commercials as well. Although they more commonly use pathos and ethos, advertisers will sometimes use logos to sell products. For example, commercials based on saving consumers money, such as car commercials that focus on miles-per-gallon, are appealing to the consumers’ sense of logos.

As you work to build logos in your arguments, here are some strategies to keep in mind.

  • Both experience and source material can provide you with evidence to appeal to logos. While outside sources will provide you with excellent evidence in an argumentative essay, in some situations, you can share personal experiences and observations. Just make sure they are appropriate to the situation and you present them in a clear and logical manner.
  • Remember to think about your audience as you appeal to logos. Just because something makes sense in your mind, doesn’t mean it will make the same kind of sense to your audience. You need to try to see things from your audience’s perspective. Having others read your writing, especially those who might disagree with your position, is helpful.
  • Be sure to maintain clear lines of reasoning throughout your argument. One error in logic can negatively impact your entire position. When you present faulty logic, you lose credibility.
  • When presenting an argument based on logos, it is important to avoid emotional overtones and maintain an even tone of voice. Remember, it’s not just a matter of the type of evidence you are presenting; how you present this evidence is important as well.

You will be thinking about the decisions an author has made along these lines and thinking about whether these decisions are effective or ineffective.

The following page provides a sample rhetorical analysis with some notes to help you better understand your goals when writing a formal rhetorical analysis.

This content was created by Excelsior Online Writing Lab (OWL) and is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-4.0 International License . You are free to use, adapt, and/or share this material as long as you properly attribute. Please keep this information on materials you use, adapt, and/or share for attribution purposes. 

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Home — Blog — Topic Ideas — 250 Sports Topics: Persuasive Speech Ideas and Titles

250 Sports Topics: Persuasive Speech Ideas and Titles

sports topics

Sports, as a universal language, encompasses a wide range of disciplines, including team sports like football and basketball, individual sports such as tennis and swimming, adventure sports like rock climbing and surfing, as well as winter sports, including skiing and ice hockey. The realm of sports topics extends far beyond mere celebration of victories or analysis of defeats; it delves into the understanding of human endeavor, resilience, teamwork, and individual brilliance. These topics offer a rich vein of content for persuasive speeches and essays, appealing to both emotions and reason, and urging audiences to consider deeper societal issues, health, education, and personal growth.

Writing about sports topics provides an opportunity to explore the impact of sports on society and the individual. It's not just about the physical aspects but also about the psychological and social benefits. Sports debate topics often highlight the role of sports in promoting mental health, fostering community spirit, and encouraging a healthy lifestyle. They can also address controversies, such as doping, corruption, and the commercialization of sports, providing a platform for critical thinking and discussion.

The richness of sports as a subject matter offers endless opportunities to weave together narratives of challenge, triumph, and transformation, making essays on sports not just informative but also profoundly inspiring.

How to Choose a Good Topic on Sports

Choosing a compelling sports topic necessitates a nuanced understanding of your audience's preferences, alongside an assessment of the topic's current relevance and its capacity to incite meaningful debate or persuade effectively. It's crucial to identify subjects that not only resonate on a deeply personal level with your audience but also intersect with broader thematic elements such as ethics, advancements in technology, and the various socio-economic factors that influence the realm of sports. This balanced approach ensures the topic's universal appeal and its ability to engage a diverse readership. Particularly, the convergence of sports with pressing societal issues—like providing resources for low-income college students—opens up a rich avenue for discussion that transcends mere sports commentary. It invites a more profound exploration of how sports can serve as a microcosm for larger societal dynamics, offering insights into equity, accessibility, and the transformative power of sports as a tool for social change. In this article, we delve into 250 varied sports persuasive speech topics and sports argumentative essay topics, each carefully selected to spark interest and drive discourse across different aspects of sports, from team-based dynamics and individual feats to the broader social impact of sporting activities. Whether you're crafting an argumentative essay that tackles the ethical dilemmas in sports or preparing a persuasive speech that advocates for more inclusive policies in sports programs, these topics are designed to bolster your arguments with a rich mix of insights and perspectives.

The Best 10 Sports Topics to Write About in 2024

In 2024, sports writing is evolving, focusing on topics that blend traditional interests with pressing social issues. Consider exploring:

  • The impact of technology on fair play in sports.
  • Mental health awareness among professional athletes.
  • The role of sports in bridging socio-economic divides.
  • Gender equality in sports: Progress and challenges.
  • The influence of sports scholarships on low-income students.
  • The environmental footprint of major sporting events.
  • The rise of e-sports and its recognition as a legitimate sport.
  • The importance of sports in fostering global peace and understanding.
  • Ethical considerations in sports sponsorships and advertising.
  • The future of sports in a post-pandemic world.

Interesting Sports Debate Topics

When it comes to stimulating discussions and engaging audiences, few subjects can match the dynamism of sports debate topics. This section not only explores the competitive spirit and strategic intricacies inherent in various sports but also delves into how these activities intersect with larger societal questions, ethics, and personal development. By addressing these topics, speakers and writers can challenge perceptions, encourage critical thinking, and foster a deeper appreciation for the impact of sports on individuals and society alike. Below are 10 thought-provoking topics that cover a range of issues, from the moral obligations of athletes and fans to the economic and environmental considerations of hosting large-scale sporting events.

  • Should performance-enhancing drugs be legalized in professional sports under medical supervision?
  • The role of sports in promoting global peace and understanding: Idealistic or achievable?
  • Is the commercialization of sports eroding its true essence and spirit?
  • The impact of technology on traditional sports: Evolution or dilution?
  • Gender equality in sports: How far have we really come?
  • The ethics of using animals in sports competitions.
  • Should esports be recognized and respected as traditional sports?
  • The influence of media on public perception of athletes and sports.
  • Mandatory retirement ages for professional athletes: For or against?
  • Are the psychological pressures on young athletes justified by potential career rewards?

Sports Persuasive Speech Topics on Team Sports

When exploring persuasive speech topics sports, the emphasis on team sports opens a wide avenue for discussions that transcend mere game strategies or win-loss records. Delving into the realm of team sports, we unlock a vast potential for persuasive discourse, aiming to influence opinions, stir emotions, and inspire action on various aspects of sportsmanship, teamwork, and the societal impact of sports.

Volleyball Sports Research Topics

  • The Evolution of Volleyball: From Origins to Olympic Glory
  • Analyzing the Impact of Modern Training Techniques on Volleyball Performance
  • Volleyball Injury Prevention Strategies: A Comprehensive Review
  • The Role of Team Dynamics and Communication in Volleyball Success
  • Gender Equality in Volleyball: Progress and Challenges
  • The Influence of Technology on Volleyball Coaching and Performance Analysis
  • Mental Toughness in Volleyball: Developing Resilience among Athletes
  • The Economic Impact of Professional Volleyball Leagues Worldwide
  • Volleyball and Youth Development: Lessons Beyond the Court
  • The Future of Beach Volleyball: Growth, Trends, and Sustainability

Football Sports Argumentative Topics

  • Should College Football Players Be Paid for Their Performance?
  • The Impact of Video Assistant Referee (VAR) Technology: Fairness vs. Flow of the Game
  • The Role of National Identity in International Football Competitions
  • Tackling Racial Discrimination: Is Football Doing Enough?
  • The Ethics of Transfers and Loans in Professional Football
  • Concussions in Football: Are Safety Measures Sufficient?
  • The Commercialization of Football: Beneficial Evolution or Detrimental to the Sport's Essence?
  • Should FIFA Implement Stricter Regulations to Combat Match Fixing?
  • The Influence of Fan Culture on Football Team Performance
  • Youth Development in Football: Is the Current System Benefiting Young Talents?

Baseball Persuasive Speech Topics

  • The Case for Implementing Instant Replay Reviews in Baseball
  • Why Baseball Needs to Address Its Pace of Play to Attract Younger Audiences
  • The Importance of Preserving Historic Baseball Stadiums for Future Generations
  • Enhancing Safety Measures in Baseball to Prevent Injuries from Foul Balls
  • The Role of Analytics in Baseball: Revolutionizing the Game or Diminishing Tradition?
  • Advocating for More International Representation in Major League Baseball
  • The Economic Impact of Minor League Baseball Teams on Local Communities
  • The Need for Stricter Performance-Enhancing Drug Policies in Baseball
  • Encouraging Youth Participation in Baseball to Foster a Love for the Game
  • Making the Case for Increasing the Visibility and Support of Women's Baseball

Basketball Argumentative Essay Topics

  • The Effectiveness of the NBA's One-and-Done Rule: A Boon or Bane for Young Athletes?
  • Gender Disparity in Basketball: Addressing Wage and Media Coverage Gaps
  • Should the NBA Implement Stricter Policies on Player Rest Days to Prevent Injuries?
  • The Impact of Social Media on Professional Basketball Players' Mental Health
  • College Basketball vs. Overseas Professional Leagues: The Best Path for Emerging Talents
  • The Role of Analytics in Basketball: Enhancing the Game or Diminishing Human Elements?
  • The Influence of Shoe Companies on Amateur and Professional Basketball
  • Basketball and Education: Balancing Athletics and Academics in College Sports
  • The Case for and Against Expanding the NBA Playoffs
  • Addressing Age Limits in Professional Basketball: Protecting Young Players or Restricting Opportunities?

Ice Hockey Persuasive Speech Topics

  • The Importance of Implementing More Stringent Concussion Protocols in Ice Hockey
  • Why Ice Hockey Needs to Expand its Reach Beyond Traditional Markets
  • The Role of Fighting in Ice Hockey: Tradition vs. Player Safety
  • Encouraging Diversity and Inclusion in the Predominantly White Sport of Ice Hockey
  • The Economic Benefits of Hosting Major Ice Hockey Tournaments for Local Communities
  • Implementing Greener Practices in Ice Hockey Arenas to Combat Climate Change
  • The Impact of Youth Ice Hockey Programs on Community Development
  • Addressing the Gender Gap: Promoting Women's Ice Hockey on a Global Scale
  • The Need for Better Mental Health Resources for Ice Hockey Players
  • Persuading Governments to Increase Funding for Ice Hockey Facilities in Underprivileged Areas

Cheerleading Persuasive Speech Topics

  • Recognizing Cheerleading as a Sport: The Case for Official Recognition and Funding
  • The Importance of Implementing Strict Safety Standards in Cheerleading
  • Cheerleading: Beyond Pom-Poms and Smiles - Advocating for Athletic Respect
  • The Role of Cheerleading in Promoting Team Spirit and School Morale
  • Addressing Gender Stereotypes in Cheerleading: Breaking Down Barriers
  • The Psychological Benefits of Cheerleading: Building Confidence and Teamwork
  • The Need for Professional Development and Training Programs for Cheer Coaches
  • Promoting Diversity and Inclusion Within Cheerleading Squads
  • Advocating for Competitive Cheerleading to Be Included in the Olympic Games
  • The Importance of Scholarships for Cheerleaders in Higher Education Institutions

Argumentative Essay Topics on Individual Sport

When we delve into the realm of individual sports, we're not just talking about the physical prowess required to excel solo; we're exploring a universe brimming with rich, complex topics ripe for argumentative essays. The focus on individual athletes shifts the discourse towards intense scrutiny of personal ethics, training methodologies, mental health, and the broader socio-economic impacts of their sporting endeavors. In this section, we tackle sports argumentative essay topics that provoke thought, challenge preconceived notions, and invite readers to reconsider their perspectives on what it means to compete and succeed in the arena of individual sports. Here, argumentative essay topics about sports transcend the mere spectacle of competition, engaging with the intricate weave of personal achievement against the backdrop of global sporting culture.

Sports Argumentative Topics on Swimming

  • Should High Schools and Colleges Prioritize Funding for Competitive Swimming Programs?
  • The Ethics of Technological Swimsuits: Enhancing Performance or Undermining Talent?
  • Mandatory Water Safety and Swimming Lessons in Schools: A Necessity or Overreach?
  • The Impact of Early Specialization in Competitive Swimming on Athlete Burnout
  • Gender Equality in Competitive Swimming: Are We Doing Enough?
  • The Role of International Bodies in Combatting Doping in Professional Swimming
  • Accessibility of Competitive Swimming Training for Low-Income Families
  • The Psychological Impact of Competitive Swimming on Young Athletes
  • Should Transgender Athletes Compete in Gendered Swimming Competitions?
  • The Environmental Impact of Maintaining Large Swimming Facilities for Competitive Events

Sports Argumentative Topics on Ski

  • The Responsibility of Ski Resorts in Promoting Environmental Sustainability
  • Helmet Laws in Skiing: Necessary Safety Measure or Personal Choice?
  • The Economic Impact of Ski Tourism on Local Communities: Boon or Bane?
  • The Influence of Climate Change on the Future of Competitive Skiing
  • Should Skiing Equipment Be Standardized for All Professional Competitions?
  • The Role of Artificial Snow in Ski Competitions: Ethical Considerations
  • Accessibility and Inclusion: Making Skiing a Sport for Everyone
  • The Debate Over Land Use for Ski Resorts vs. Conservation Efforts
  • Enhancing Safety Measures for Ski Jumping: How Far Should Regulations Go?
  • The Impact of Professional Skiing on Youth Participation and Interest in the Sport

Sports Argumentative Topics on Boxing

  • The Ethical Dilemma of Brain Injuries in Boxing: Is the Sport Worth the Risk?
  • Should There Be an Age Limit for Professional Boxers?
  • The Role of Weight Classes in Boxing: Fair Competition or Unnecessary Limitation?
  • The Influence of Media and Promotion in Shaping Boxing Careers
  • Performance-Enhancing Drugs in Boxing: Can the Sport Ever Be Clean?
  • The Impact of Boxing on Youth: Violence Promotion or Discipline Building?
  • The Future of Women’s Boxing: Breaking Barriers and Challenging Stereotypes
  • Should Boxing Be Banned or Further Regulated for Safety?
  • The Role of Technology in Training and Judging Boxing Matches
  • The Economic Divide: Does Boxing Favor the Wealthy in Terms of Training and Opportunities?

Sports Argumentative Topics on Track and Field

  • The Use of Performance-Enhancing Drugs in Track and Field: A Losing Battle?
  • The Impact of High-Tech Equipment on Fairness in Track and Field Competitions
  • Gender Equality in Track and Field: Are Prize Money and Opportunities Equal?
  • The Role of Genetic Engineering: Will Designer Athletes Dominate Track and Field?
  • The Ethics of Age Limits in Professional Track and Field Competitions
  • The Effectiveness of Lifetime Bans for Doping in Track and Field
  • The Importance of Amateur Track and Field Programs in Schools
  • The Debate Over Transgender Athletes in Track and Field Competitions
  • Climate Change and Outdoor Track and Field Events: Adapting to a New Reality
  • The Legacy of Track and Field Icons: Role Models or Unattainable Standards?

Taekwondo Sports Argumentative Topics

  • The Effectiveness of Taekwondo as a Means of Self-Defense
  • The Impact of Olympic Inclusion on Taekwondo’s Popularity and Development
  • Gender Stereotypes in Taekwondo: Breaking Down Barriers
  • The Importance of Mental Discipline in Taekwondo Training
  • The Role of Taekwondo in Promoting International Peace and Understanding
  • The Debate Over Scoring Systems in Competitive Taekwondo
  • The Balance Between Tradition and Modernization in Taekwondo Practice
  • The Need for More Stringent Concussion Protocols in Taekwondo
  • Taekwondo for All Ages: Benefits and Limitations
  • The Future of Taekwondo: Technology Integration in Training and Competitions

Yoga Sports Argumentative Topics

  • Yoga as Sport vs. Spiritual Practice: Losing Its Essence?
  • The Commercialization of Yoga: Beneficial or Detrimental?
  • The Role of Yoga in Athletes’ Mental and Physical Health
  • The Standardization of Yoga Practices: Necessary or Restrictive?
  • The Cultural Appropriation of Yoga: Respect or Exploitation?
  • Yoga Certification: Ensuring Quality or Creating Exclusivity?
  • The Impact of Online Yoga Classes on Traditional Studios
  • The Inclusion of Yoga in School Physical Education Programs
  • Addressing the Lack of Diversity in the Yoga Community
  • The Potential for Competitive Yoga: How Would It Work?

Gym Sports Argumentative Topics

  • The Role of Gyms in Promoting Public Health: Luxury or Necessity?
  • The Debate Over Bodybuilding: Healthy Lifestyle or Obsessive Culture?
  • The Impact of Social Media on Gym Culture: Inspiration or Intimidation?
  • Should Gyms Be Required to Have Staff Trained in Mental Health First Aid?
  • The Effectiveness of Personal Trainers: Worth the Investment?
  • The Rise of Home Gyms: The End of Traditional Gyms?
  • Gym Membership Fees: Accessibility vs. Quality of Service
  • The Importance of Creating Inclusive Gym Environments for All Body Types
  • The Safety of Dietary Supplements Sold in Gyms
  • The Future of Fitness: Technology’s Role in Personalized Gym Experiences

Running Sports Argumentative Topics

  • The Ethics of Performance-Enhancing Drugs in Professional Running.
  • Should Ultra-Marathon Races Have More Stringent Health and Safety Regulations?
  • The Impact of High-Tech Running Shoes on Competition Fairness.
  • The Role of Running in Public Health Campaigns Against Obesity.
  • Addressing the Gender Gap in Sponsorship and Media Coverage of Running Events.
  • The Influence of Amateur Running Clubs on Professional Running.
  • Should Cross-Country Running Be Included in the Olympic Games?
  • The Debate Over Age Limits for Participation in Marathon Races.
  • The Environmental Impact of Large-Scale Running Events and Marathons.
  • The Effectiveness of Virtual Running Competitions: A Pandemic Legacy.

Golf Sports Argumentative Topics

  • The Exclusivity of Golf Clubs: Elitism vs. Tradition.
  • Environmental Concerns: Should Golf Courses Be More Eco-Friendly?
  • Gender Equality in Golf: Addressing the Pay Gap and Tournament Opportunities.
  • The Role of Technology in Golf: Enhancing the Game or Diminishing Skill?
  • Should Golf Be Considered a Physically Demanding Sport?
  • The Impact of Golf Tourism on Local Economies and Environments.
  • The Debate Over Slow Play in Golf and Its Impact on the Sport's Popularity.
  • Youth Participation in Golf: Declining Interest and Potential Solutions.
  • The Future of Golf: Adapting to Changing Demographics and Preferences.
  • Golf in the Olympics: Does It Belong?

Badminton Sports Argumentative Topics

  • The Global Recognition of Badminton: Is It Undervalued as a Sport?
  • Addressing the Dominance of Asian Countries in International Badminton.
  • The Role of Technology in Badminton Equipment: Fair Advantage or Not?
  • Should Badminton Focus More on Expanding Its Reach to Western Countries?
  • The Impact of Coaching Styles on Badminton Players' Performance.
  • Gender Disparities in Badminton: Evaluating Equality in Prize Money and Coverage.
  • The Potential of Badminton to Improve Physical Health Among the Elderly.
  • The Influence of Shuttlecock Quality on Game Fairness.
  • The Importance of Grassroots Programs in the Development of Elite Badminton Players.
  • The Effectiveness of the Current Scoring System in Professional Badminton.

Tennis Sports Argumentative Topics

  • The Debate Over Equal Prize Money for Men and Women in Tennis.
  • The Impact of Youth Tennis Academies on the Sport’s Future Stars.
  • Should Tennis Tournaments Reduce the Number of Sets to Prevent Injuries?
  • The Role of Mental Health Support for Professional Tennis Players.
  • The Evolution of Tennis Equipment: Keeping the Essence of the Game Intact.
  • Addressing the Climate Impact of International Tennis Tours.
  • The Influence of Wild Card Entries on the Fairness of Tennis Tournaments.
  • The Effectiveness of Anti-Doping Measures in Professional Tennis.
  • The Future of Davis Cup and Fed Cup: Preserving Tennis Traditions vs. Modernization.
  • The Impact of Player Behavior and Sportsmanship on the Public Perception of Tennis.

Wrestling Sports Argumentative Topics

  • The Ethical Considerations of Weight Cutting Practices in Wrestling.
  • Should Professional Wrestling Be Recognized as an Olympic Sport?
  • The Role of High School Wrestling in Promoting Discipline and Physical Fitness.
  • Addressing the Risk of Concussions and Chronic Injuries in Wrestling.
  • The Representation of Women in Wrestling: Progress and Challenges.
  • The Influence of Media and Entertainment on Amateur Wrestling.
  • The Importance of Strict Anti-Doping Regulations in Wrestling Competitions.
  • The Debate Over the Use of Protective Gear in Wrestling.
  • The Cultural Significance of Wrestling in Different Societies.
  • The Future of Wrestling: Balancing Tradition with Innovation.

Adventure/Extreme Sports: Argumentative Essay Topics

The world of adventure and extreme sports brings to the forefront a plethora of engaging and contentious issues, ripe for exploration through argumentative essays and persuasive speeches. As participants push the boundaries of human capability and endurance, the debates surrounding these activities offer a unique lens through which we examine questions of safety, ethics, environmental impact, and the very nature of sport itself. This section delves into debate persuasive speech topics about sports and sports argumentative essay topics, specifically tailored to the adrenaline-fueled realm of extreme sports. Here, we challenge readers and speakers alike to confront their perceptions of risk, reward, and responsibility in the context of sports that defy conventional boundaries and provoke intense discussion.

Skydiving Argumentative Essay Topics

  • The Ethics of Commercializing Extreme Sports: A Case Study of Skydiving.
  • Should Age Restrictions for Skydiving Be More Stringent?
  • The Role of Government Regulation in Ensuring Skydiving Safety.
  • Skydiving and Mental Health: The Therapeutic Benefits vs. Risks.
  • The Environmental Impact of Skydiving: Are We Ignoring the Carbon Footprint?
  • The Debate Over Mandatory Insurance for Skydivers: Who Should Bear the Cost?
  • Can Virtual Reality Skydiving Adequately Replace the Real Experience?
  • The Impact of Social Media on Skydiving: Encouraging Recklessness or Promoting Safety?
  • Should Skydiving be Included in Olympic Games as a New Extreme Sport?
  • Addressing the Gender Gap in Skydiving: Barriers and Opportunities for Female Skydivers.

Surfing Argumentative Essay Topics

  • Balancing Local Culture and Global Surfing Competitions: Preservation vs. Progress.
  • The Impact of Surfing on Coastal Ecosystems: Sustainable Sport or Environmental Hazard?
  • Should Surfing Spots Be Regulated to Prevent Overcrowding?
  • The Commercialization of Surfing: Losing Its Soul to Sponsorships and Media.
  • The Role of Artificial Wave Pools in Surfing: Innovation or Detraction from Authenticity?
  • Addressing the Gender Disparity in Professional Surfing: Equality in the Water.
  • The Influence of Surfing on Mental Health: A Deep Dive into Its Therapeutic Benefits.
  • The Debate Over Surfing Etiquette: Unwritten Laws vs. Formal Regulation.
  • Surfing in the Olympics: Does It Enhance or Diminish the Sport's Rebel Spirit?
  • The Future of Surfing: Navigating the Challenges of Climate Change and Rising Sea Levels.

Winter Sports: Topics to Write About

Winter sports, with their unique blend of thrill, tradition, and environmental reliance, serve as a fascinating backdrop for a rich array of argumentative essays. The icy realms of skiing, ice skating, snowboarding, and more, are not just playgrounds for athletic prowess but also arenas for heated debates on topics ranging from climate change impacts to technological advancements and ethical considerations in competitive settings. This section explores sports argumentative essay topics and argumentative essay topics about sports, specifically zooming in on the challenges, controversies, and cultural significance of winter sports. As we lace up our boots and set out on this exploratory journey, we invite discussions that scrutinize the multifaceted aspects of these chilly pursuits, from argumentative essay topics sports that question the sustainability of snow-based activities to the socio-economic barriers that may limit access to these exhilarating but often exclusive sports.

Argumentative Sports Topics on Ski

  • The Ethical Implications of Artificial Snow in Competitive Skiing.
  • Climate Change and Its Impact on Traditional Ski Resorts: Adaptation Strategies.
  • The Safety of Backcountry Skiing: Necessary Risks or Reckless Endeavors?
  • Gender Equality in Skiing Competitions: Progress and Challenges.
  • The Influence of Skiing on Local Economies: A Blessing or a Curse?
  • The Role of Technology in Enhancing Ski Performance and Safety.
  • The Debate on Age Limits for Professional Skiing: Protecting Young Athletes.
  • The Environmental Footprint of Ski Tourism: Finding Sustainable Solutions.
  • Skiing and Cultural Appropriation: Respecting Indigenous Lands and Traditions.
  • Mandatory Helmet Laws in Skiing: Safety Precaution or Personal Choice?

Argumentative Sports Topics on Ice Skating

  • Judging Bias in Competitive Ice Skating: The Need for Transparency and Fairness.
  • The Role of Ice Skating in Promoting Physical Fitness Among Youth.
  • The Impact of Climate Change on Outdoor Ice Skating Venues.
  • Addressing the High Costs of Competitive Ice Skating: Barriers to Entry.
  • The Psychological Pressure on Young Ice Skaters: Navigating Mental Health.
  • Should Ice Skating Moves With High Injury Risks Be Banned?
  • The Importance of Diversity and Inclusion in Ice Skating.
  • The Evolution of Ice Skates: Technology vs. Tradition.
  • The Future of Synthetic Ice Rinks: Pros and Cons.
  • Ice Skating and Education: Balancing Academics and Athletic Training.

Argumentative Sports Topics on Ice Hockey

  • The Necessity of Fighting in Ice Hockey: Tradition vs. Player Safety.
  • Addressing Concussion Issues in Ice Hockey: Are Current Protocols Sufficient?
  • The Role of Women's Ice Hockey in Promoting Gender Equality in Sports.
  • Climate Change: The Future of Outdoor Ice Hockey Games.
  • The Economic Impact of Professional Ice Hockey Teams on Local Communities.
  • Youth Ice Hockey: Preventing Injuries and Promoting Safe Play.
  • The Debate Over the Use of Performance-Enhancing Drugs in Ice Hockey.
  • Enhancing Diversity in Ice Hockey: Strategies for Inclusivity.
  • The Impact of Technology on Refereeing in Ice Hockey.
  • The Tradition of College Ice Hockey: Balancing Sport and Academics.

Reflecting on the Wide World of Sports Topics

As we cross the finish line of our exploration into the diverse and dynamic world of sports topics, it's clear that the realm of athletics offers far more than just games and competitions. From the heated debates stirred by sports argumentative essay topics to the compelling narratives that fuel sports persuasive speech topics, sports serve as a mirror reflecting societal values, challenges, and aspirations. Whether dissecting the ethical implications of performance-enhancing drugs, advocating for gender equality on the playing field, or exploring the impact of technology on traditional sports, the discussions we've engaged in underscore the profound influence sports have on culture, education, and personal development. As athletes continue to push the boundaries of human potential, and fans deepen their engagement with these pursuits, the topics we've covered offer a starting point for deeper inquiry and debate. In the world of sports, every game, match, or race tells a story, and every story invites us to consider broader questions about what it means to strive, to compete, and to be part of a community bound by shared passions and pursuits.

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argumentative rhetorical analysis essay topics

Rhetorical Analysis Sample Essay

Harriet Clark

Ms. Rebecca Winter

13 Feb. 2015

Not Quite a Clean Sweep: Rhetorical Strategies in

Grose's "Cleaning: The Final Feminist Frontier”

A woman’s work is never done: many American women grow up with this saying and feel it to be true. 1 One such woman, author Jessica Grose, wrote “Cleaning: The Final Feminist Frontier,” published in 2013 in the New Republic, 2 and she argues that while the men recently started taking on more of the childcare and cooking, cleaning still falls unfairly on women. 3 Grose begins building her credibility with personal facts and reputable sources, citing convincing facts and statistics, and successfully employing emotional appeals; however, toward the end of the article, her attempts to appeal to readers’ emotions weaken her credibility and ultimately, her argument. 4

In her article, Grose first sets the stage by describing a specific scenario of house-cleaning with her husband after being shut in during Hurricane Sandy, and then she outlines the uneven distribution of cleaning work in her marriage and draws a comparison to the larger feminist issue of who does the cleaning in a relationship. Grose continues by discussing some of the reasons that men do not contribute to cleaning: the praise for a clean house goes to the woman; advertising and media praise men’s cooking and childcare, but not cleaning; and lastly, it is just not fun. Possible solutions to the problem, Grose suggests, include making a chart of who does which chores, dividing up tasks based on skill and ability, accepting a dirtier home, and making cleaning more fun with gadgets. 5

Throughout her piece, Grose uses many strong sources that strengthen her credibility and appeal to ethos, as well as build her argument. 6 These sources include, “sociologists Judith Treas and Tsui-o Tai,” “a 2008 study from the University of New Hampshire,” and “P&G North America Fabric Care Brand Manager, Matthew Krehbiel” (qtd. in Grose). 7 Citing these sources boosts Grose’s credibility by showing that she has done her homework and has provided facts and statistics, as well as expert opinions to support her claim. She also uses personal examples from her own home life to introduce and support the issue, which shows that she has a personal stake in and first-hand experience with the problem. 8

Adding to her ethos appeals, Grose uses strong appeals to logos, with many facts and statistics and logical progressions of ideas. 9 She points out facts about her marriage and the distribution of household chores: “My husband and I both work. We split midnight baby feedings ...but ... he will admit that he’s never cleaned the bathroom, that I do the dishes nine times out of ten, and that he barely knows how the washer and dryer work in the apartment we’ve lived in for over eight months.” 10 These facts introduce and support the idea that Grose does more household chores than her husband. Grose continues with many statistics:

[A]bout 55 percent of American mothers employed full time do some housework on an average day, while only 18 percent of employed fathers do. ... [W]orking women with children are still doing a week and a half more of “second shift” work each year than their male partners. ... Even in the famously gender-neutral Sweden, women do 45 minutes more housework a day than their male partners. 11

These statistics are a few of many that logically support her claim that it is a substantial and real problem that men do not do their fair share of the chores. The details and numbers build an appeal to logos and impress upon the reader that this is a problem worth discussing. 12

Along with strong logos appeals, Grose effectively makes appeals to pathos in the beginning and middle sections. 13 Her introduction is full of emotionally-charged words and phrases that create a sympathetic image; Grose notes that she “was eight months pregnant” and her husband found it difficult to “fight with a massively pregnant person.” 14 The image she evokes of the challenges and vulnerabilities of being so pregnant, as well as the high emotions a woman feels at that time effectively introduce the argument and its seriousness. Her goal is to make the reader feel sympathy for her. Adding to this idea are words and phrases such as, “insisted,” “argued,” “not fun,” “sucks” “headachey,” “be judged,” “be shunned” (Grose). All of these words evoke negative emotions about cleaning, which makes the reader sympathize with women who feel “judged” and shunned”—very negative feelings. Another feeling Grose reinforces with her word choice is the concept of fairness: “fair share,” “a week and a half more of ‘second shift’ work,” “more housework,” “more gendered and less frequent.” These words help establish the unfairness that exists when women do all of the cleaning, and they are an appeal to pathos, or the readers’ feelings of frustration and anger with injustice. 15

However, the end of the article lacks the same level of effectiveness in the appeals to ethos. 16 For example, Grose notes that when men do housework, they are considered to be “’enacting “small instances of gender heroism,” or ‘SIGH’s’—which, barf.” 17 The usage of the word “barf” is jarring to the reader; unprofessional and immature, it is a shift from the researched, intelligent voice she has established and the reader is less likely to take the author seriously. This damages the strength of her credibility and her argument. 18

Additionally, her last statement in the article refers to her husband in a way that weakens the argument. 19 While returning to the introduction’s hook in the conclusion is a frequently-used strategy, Grose chooses to return to her discussion of her husband in a humorous way: Grose discusses solutions, and says there is “a huge, untapped market ... for toilet-scrubbing iPods. I bet my husband would buy one.” 20 Returning to her own marriage and husband is an appeal to ethos or personal credibility, and while that works well in the introduction, in the conclusion, it lacks the strength and seriousness that the topic deserves and was given earlier in the article. 21

Though Grose begins the essay by effectively persuading her readers of the unfair distribution of home-maintenance cleaning labor, she loses her power in the end, where she most needs to drive home her argument. Readers can see the problem exists in both her marriage and throughout the world; however, her shift to humor and sarcasm makes the reader not take the problem as seriously in the end. 22 Grose could have more seriously driven home the point that a woman’s work could be done: by a man. 23

Works Cited

Grose, Jessica. “Cleaning: The Final Feminist Frontier.” New Republic. The New Republic, 19 Mar. 2013. Web. 28 Mar. 2014.

  • Article author's claim or purpose
  • Summary of the article's main point in the second paragraph (could also be in the introduction)
  • Third paragraph begins with a transition and topic sentence that reflects the first topic in the thesis
  • Quotes illustrate how the author uses appeals to ethos
  • Analysis explains how the quotes show the effective use of ethos as noted in the thesis
  • Transition and topic sentence about the second point from the thesis
  • Quote that illustrates appeals to logos
  • Analysis explains how the quotes show the effective use of logos, as noted in the thesis
  • Transition and topic sentence about the third point from the thesis
  • Quotes that illustrate appeals to pathos
  • Analysis explains how the quotes show the effective use of pathos, as noted in the thesis
  • Transition and topic sentence about fourth point from the thesis
  • Quote illustrates how the author uses appeal to ethos
  • Analysis explains how quote supports thesis
  • Transition and topic sentence about fourth point from thesis
  • Conclusion returns to the ideas in the thesis and further develops them
  • Last sentence returns to the hook in the introduction

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Analytical Essay Topics: 50+ Ideas and Examples to Consider

Author Image

by  Antony W

June 9, 2024

analytical essay topics

Every analytical essay assignment starts with topic selection. Following this, you have to conduct research to find relevant materials for reference, and then structure, write, and edit the essay before handing it over for review and grading.

Unfortunately, you can’t come by the best topics fast. Sometimes you have to look at pre-written ideas to speed up the brainstorming process.

So in this post, we give you 50+ topic ideas that you may find interesting enough to explore in an analyti c al essay . Whether you’re in high school or pursing a course in college, you just might find a good topic from this list to research and write about.

Key Takeaways

  • In an analytical essay, you identify an argument and then use relevant claims and evidence to do an in-depth analysis.
  • Place more focus on the theme of an author’s work, particularly on how use they use literary devicesto communicate their message.
  • Remember that analysis isn’t similar to arguing . Your goal isn’t to present which side of an issue is right. Rather, you should focus on presenting analysis with examples that strengthen your argument based on a written piece of work.

50+ Best Analytical Essay Topics

The following is a list of at least 50 topics that may be a good fit for your analysis essay if your teacher hasn’t given you one yet: 

Critical Analysis Essay Topics

  • Analyze how social media platforms have shaped communication, relationships, information dissemination, and societal norms.
  • Examine the trajectory of a specific celebrity’s career, exploring the factors contributing to their rise to fame and subsequent decline.
  • How technological advancements over the past decade have transformed various aspects of our lives.
  • Assess how religious beliefs and institutions shape human values and moral frameworks.
  • Analyze the systemic and societal impacts of racial discrimination in the United States of America.
  • The multifaceted effects of climate change on the environment, ecosystems, communities, and global sustainability efforts.
  • How media censorship, intentional or unintentional, shapes public perceptions, influences narratives, and impacts access to information and freedom of expression.

Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics

The following are some of the best rhetorical analysis essay topics:

  • How an author’s choice of language, including diction and syntax, influences and shapes their argument or narrative.
  • The effect of different tones, such as solemn, humorous, or nostalgic, on the overall impact and emotional resonance of a story or poem
  • How you can employ humor as a tool to effectively convey messages, provoke thought, or analyze societal norms.
  • Assess the strategies, messaging, and visual elements utilized in a political ad campaign and their impact on audience perception and behavior.
  • How filmmakers manipulate sound, visuals, and cinematic techniques to convey specific messages or evoke emotions in their audiences.
  • Examine how cultural assumptions and biases influence an author’s argument or viewpoint and how they convey these within a text.
  • Evaluate the effects of irony, including situational, verbal, or dramatic, in classic literature.

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High School Analytical Essay Topics

  • What are the secondary effects of living with phobias?
  • The recommended amount of sleep for students to maintain academic performance
  • How do phobias develop and manifest psychologically and what are the associated physiological responses?
  • Strategies and interventions that one can implement to prevent and mitigate the development of gambling addiction
  • How technological advancements have influenced the creation, distribution, and reception of art and literature in contemporary society
  • Reasons behind the prevalence of music as a form of expression, identification, and emotional connection among teenagers
  • The role of education in shaping individuals to become more informed, empathetic, and engaged global citizens
  • How do various forms of entertainment perpetuate stereotypes about women and minorities?

Analytical Essay Topics on Education

  • Evaluate the pros and cons of enforcing school uniforms to students of all academic levels.
  • Discuss strategies and policies that college student unions can implement to address and prevent bullying in schools.
  • Investigate the reasons behind disparities in school funding.
  • Discuss whether acquiring knowledge is synonymous with receiving an education.
  • Analyze approaches and reforms that could elevate the quality and effectiveness of education.
  • The role and impact of examinations in students’ academic careers

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Persuasive Analysis Essay Topics

  • Investigate the therapeutic effects of music on mental health. 
  • Challenge the boundaries of freedom of expression versus offensive language in music.
  • Evaluate the effectiveness and potential consequences of imposing more tariffs as a solution to the financial issues faced by the United States.
  • Discuss the feasibility and ethical implications of abandoning nuclear power by all states.
  • Compare and contrast the feasibility, efficiency, and environmental impact of solar energy as a substitute for hydroelectric energy.
  • Discuss various strategies and their ethical implications for addressing illegal immigration.
  • Investigate the correlation between hobbies and personality development and show how one’s interests and pursuits can shape character and traits.

Sports Analytical Essay Topics

  • Analyze how Title IX legislation has shaped and transformed the landscape of college sports.
  • Examine how gender norms and stereotypes influence behavior, perception, and opportunities within professional sports.
  • Discuss how media coverage shapes public perception of athletes.
  • Investigate the factors contributing to certain countries excelling in particular sports.
  • Assess the elements that contribute to some athletes’ popularity over others, considering factors like skill, personality, marketability, and media presence.
  • Analyze how advancements in technology have changed sports over time.
  • Evaluate the effects of financial considerations, sponsorships, and revenue on college sports programs.

Science Analysis Essay Topics

  • Analyze the diverse effects of climate change on ecosystems worldwide
  • Examine how technological innovations, such as AI, big data, and advanced instruments, have revolutionized and accelerated scientific research across disciplines.
  • Discuss the socio-economic, environmental, and healthcare factors contributing to the prevalence of certain diseases in developing nations compared to developed ones.
  • Investigate the implications of genetic engineering techniques in agriculture.
  • Assess the potential implications of recent advancements in medical technology on healthcare delivery and outcomes.
  • Evaluate the efficiency, scalability, and environmental impact of alternative energy sources such as solar, wind, or geothermal energy in mitigating reliance on fossil fuels.

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About the author 

Antony W is a professional writer and coach at Help for Assessment. He spends countless hours every day researching and writing great content filled with expert advice on how to write engaging essays, research papers, and assignments.

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COMMENTS

  1. Top 210 Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics [with Tips]

    An outstanding rhetorical analysis paper looks at persuasive strategies to understand the writer's intention. These essays examine how someone uses language to shape public opinion or inspire change. ... Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics on Culture. Culture-specific rhetorical strategies contribute to the unique characteristics of different ...

  2. 200 Engaging Rhetorical Analysis Topics For Your Paper

    A good rhetorical analysis essay topic primarily seeks to capture the base attention of the reader or audience. One of the most common situations where rhetorics come in handy is in the political field. ... Rhetorical Argument Essay Topics. When writing an argumentative essay, rhetoric is employed as the tool to not just convey thoughts and ...

  3. 70 Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics

    The Rhetorical Analysis Essay. Moving on, if rhetoric is the art of persuasion, then the rhetorical analysis essay analyzes how an author or speaker creates opportunity for persuasion in his/her text. Writing a rhetorical analysis essay involves understanding of context and occasion for writing. It also involves understanding the subject matter ...

  4. How to Write a Rhetorical Analysis

    A rhetorical analysis is a type of essay that looks at a text in terms of rhetoric. This means it is less concerned with what the author is saying than with how they say it: their goals, techniques, and appeals to the audience. A rhetorical analysis is structured similarly to other essays: an introduction presenting the thesis, a body analyzing ...

  5. 122 Interesting Rhetorical Analysis Topics For Students

    Data privacy and social media- A detailed rhetorical analysis. College athletes' payment- A rhetorical analysis. Investigating gun legalization- Rhetorical analysis of this topic. These are some of the best rhetorical analysis example topics to consider for your essay or paper.

  6. 320+ Unique Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics 2024

    Introduction to Rhetorical Analysis Essay Writing. In a rhetorical analysis essay, a writer deeply analyzes a work of literature, art, or film, takes a stance, and thoroughly evaluates the purpose of the original content.. The goal is to ensure effective delivery to the audience. Having said that, a rhetorical analysis essay finds out how effective the message of the original content was. And ...

  7. Top 80 Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics for Students

    Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics & Ideas for Students. Rhetorical essay is a challenging task for some students, and it requires proper planning and time. In this type of essay, topic selection is the main thing, and many writers confuse it when choosing a topic for the essay. This blog will help you in selecting a topic for a rhetorical essay.

  8. 40 Unique Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics

    Choosing your rhetorical analysis topic can be a real nail biter. To help you choose the best topic, explore these 40 unique rhetorical analysis essay topics covering media, movies, speeches, and literature.

  9. How to Write a Rhetorical Analysis Essay-Examples & Template

    Rhetorical appeal #3: Logos. Logos, the "logical" appeal, uses reason to persuade. Reason and logic, supported by data, evidence, clearly defined methodology, and well-constructed arguments, are what most academic writing is based on. Emotions, those of the researcher/writer as well as those of the reader, should stay out of such academic ...

  10. How to Write a Great Rhetorical Analysis Essay: With Examples

    Name the author of the text and the title of their work followed by the date in parentheses. Use a verb to describe what the author does, e.g. "implies," "asserts," or "claims". Briefly summarize the text in your own words. Mention the persuasive techniques used by the rhetor and its effect.

  11. 160 Good Argumentative Essay Topics for Students in 2024

    April 3, 2024. The skill of writing an excellent argumentative essay is a crucial one for every high school or college student to master. In sum, argumentative essays teach students how to organize their thoughts logically and present them in a convincing way. This skill is helpful not only for those pursuing degrees in law, international ...

  12. 100 Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics with Good Examples Papers

    100 Good Rhetorical Analysis Topics for Fiction, Non-Fiction, Speeches, Ads, and More. A rhetorical analysis is a type of paper that dissects the means by which the message was conveyed in a text, speech, or another medium. Rhetoric topics for an essay or research paper often focus on non-fiction writing and public speeches, which are easy to ...

  13. Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics: 20 Best Examples to Use

    Remember that you are writing for an audience and that you expect a good grade out of it. Think about what kind of topics your instructor would like or at least not object to. If you will be presenting it in class, go for a topic that your classmates will enjoy. 5. Strong and Clear Arguments.

  14. 200+ Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics & Ideas for Students

    Rhetorical analysis essay topics refer to the subject matter in which researchers examine how different parts of a work produce a specific effect on the reader. They then develop an argument and find compelling evidence to support their opinion. Such topics focus on a particular work of literature, discourse, or art.

  15. Rhetorical Analysis: Techniques, Topics, and Importance

    A rhetorical analysis essay is an academic essay writing form. In this essay, the audience evaluates how an author or speaker uses various rhetorical techniques to convey their message and persuade the audience. The primary goal of a rhetorical analysis essay is to analyze how effectively the speaker can leave an impact on the audience.

  16. 120 Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics

    The writer of a rhetorical analysis essay must also assess their audience and what that audience may understand or expect based on prior socialization and knowledge of the topic. 3. Genre. The writer of a rhetorical analysis essay must also determine what genre they are writing in, be it argumentative or expository.

  17. Free Rhetorical Analysis Essay Examples. Best Topics, Titles

    Rhetorical Analysis of Judy Brady's "I Want a Wife". Introduction Judy Brady's essay "I Want a Wife" first appeared in Ms. Magazine in 1971 and has since been regarded as an iconic piece of feminist literature. The essay is a satirical critique of the traditional roles and expectations of wives in a patriarchal society….

  18. PDF Rhetorical Analysis Essay: Ethos, Pathos, Logos

    Rhetorical Analysis Essay: Ethos, Pathos, Logos Created by: Brandon Everett Summer 2019 An appeal is an author's attempt to earn audience approval. Authors will utilize specific devices and techniques to appeal to emotion, values, character, and reason in their writing in order to make their arguments more persuasive.

  19. 160+ Best Rhetorical Analysis Topics

    Rhetorical analysis essay focuses on assessing the method used for delivering a message. This assignment isn't about giving an opinion on the topic. The purpose is to analyze how the author presents the argument and whether or not they succeeded. Keep reading to find out more strategies and prompts for a rhetorical essay.

  20. Argument Analysis

    Rhetorical analysis is going to help you think about strategies other authors have made and how or why these strategies work or don't work. In turn, your goal is to be more aware of these things in your own writing. When you analyze a work rhetorically, you are going to explore the following concepts in a piece: Audience. Purpose. Voice. Ethos.

  21. List of 250 Sports Topics for Persuasive & Argumentative Essays by

    250 Sports Topics: Persuasive Speech Ideas and Titles. Sports, as a universal language, encompasses a wide range of disciplines, including team sports like football and basketball, individual sports such as tennis and swimming, adventure sports like rock climbing and surfing, as well as winter sports, including skiing and ice hockey.

  22. Rhetorical Analysis Sample Essay

    Rhetorical Analysis Sample Essay. Harriet Clark. Ms. Rebecca Winter. CWC 101. 13 Feb. 2015. Not Quite a Clean Sweep: Rhetorical Strategies in. Grose's "Cleaning: The Final Feminist Frontier". A woman's work is never done: many American women grow up with this saying and feel it to be true. 1 One such woman, author Jessica Grose, wrote ...

  23. Analytical Essay Topics: 50+ Ideas and Examples to Consider

    Persuasive Analysis Essay Topics. Investigate the therapeutic effects of music on mental health. Challenge the boundaries of freedom of expression versus offensive language in music. Evaluate the effectiveness and potential consequences of imposing more tariffs as a solution to the financial issues faced by the United States.