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Pathos, logos, ethos related to the article "A good man in Rwanda"


Youssri 2 / 1  
Oct 12, 2015   #1
Rwanda was the theater to one of the most atrocious events not only in the 20th century, but also in the history with killing more than 800,000 people in just 100 days. The ethnic genocide flared up when the Hutu president died in the shooting down of his plane on 6 April 1994. These events have been recorded and explained by Mark Doyle, a BBC journalist who experienced the annihilation in Rwanda. In the article" A Good Man in Rwanda" is targeting readers in order to show the vital role of Capt Mbaye Diagne. Among all of these horrifying events and the endless bloodshed, Diagne, who is 30 years old and a UN peacekeeper from Senegal, emerges as a dove of peace and puts his own life on the line to save others. In the article, " A Good Man in Rwanda" for Doyle who lived those successive events in Rwanda, he could successfully convince and paint a picture in readers' minds for the heroic role of Diagne not only emotionally, but also logically and through his credibility as a witness.

Doyle uses the rhetorical appeal of pathos to convince the readers successfully in his article that Diagne is a remarkable hero who will not be forgotten for his heroic role in the Rwanda genocide. Using pathos plays a major role in gaining the sympathy of readers and getting the reader into that historical event even if it will not be as it was. As many writers, Doyle uses children as a prominent element for pathos because readers always feel empathy for what is happening to any child. A good example is the case of the children of Prime Minister Agathe Uwilingiyimana who took a brick-built bungalow as a shelter from the militia. Doyle expresses the fear of the children while they were looking at soldiers who wanted to kill their parents through a tiny window. In this case, the reader feels a deep grief because those children should not see or encounter such situations. However, the writer turns that feeling of depression into a feeling of glory by explaining the heroic role of Diagne when he was able to rescue and help those children to overcome their fear and transfer them to a safe hotel. The writer shows clearly that from the suffering which symbolized darkness, there is a light to send hope and that light is in the heroic role of Diagne.

Through focusing on the appeal to logos in the article, Dolye provides much evidence such as, photos, videos and some statistics because most readers prefer to be convinced with evidence and reasons when they read something historically. He gives many videos and photos to prove his point and confirm what was happening by the people who lived in that time. This appears clearly in the video which has been attached of a doctor, Odette Nyiramilimo who was with a family on their way to the airport when the militia stopped them and wanted to kill them. However, the strong personality of Diagne appeared in the critical situation, when he refused this horrifying act so the reader feels proud about what Diagne did when he stood in front of the militia and said, "you cannot kill these people, they are my responsibility. I will not allow you to harm them - you'll have to kill me first."(Dolye) Actually, this proves that Diagne doesn't care about his life as much as he cares for the others' life. Diagne is an actual hero because he risks his life many times in order to help others which was proved by the number of people who owe their lives to Diagne. The number is estimated by the State Department in Washington D.C. to be "as many as 600". Readers shouldn't read this number as a number but they should think deeply about the number of times and different severe situations which Diagne put himself. Overall, no one risks his life and puts his life in danger unless he is a true hero and a good man.

Trust is the basis for convincing others and Doyle knows well what he wrote about in his article because he lives through the genocide in Rwanda as a journalist, so the reader can trust his work based on his credibility as an eyewitness. A good example showing the credibility of Doyle is realted to the prominent role of Diagne is his case; When he was with Diagne and the militia wanted to kill him because he is Belgian (considered as an enemy), Diagne didn't stand with arms folded; he started joking with the soldiers. Dolye said, "He used his sense of humor to talk his way through the roadblocks." Diagne in many times used his sense of humor to break the tension of the moment with the militia. Also, even though he was a Muslim, he used to carry alcohol in his car, not for him, but in order to overtake the roadblocks and make a good relationship with the militia who stopped him. In general, people misunderstand the concept of hero: they think that he is someone who can help others by his physical power, but actually, the true hero is the one who can deal with difficult situations wisely. This situation builds trust in the readers' minds and makes them believe in Dolye when he talks about the unbelievable role of Diagne in helping and rescuing people.

Convincing people is not easy but Dolye succeeded in perusing audience through using possessive methods, pathos, logos and ethos about the heroic role of Diagne because of his vital role in the Rwanda genocide. Dolye can influence on the audience by discussing what children suffered during that time. He gives much evidence such as the statistics of the number of people who Diagne rescued based on an official document by the State Department in Washington. This article is full of credibility because the writer experienced what he writes about which is clear when he explains how Diagne rescued him. What the writer tries to say is that even in the darkness, there is a light, and this light is Diagne, who proves his heroic features in rescuing people without fearing the consequences in one of the most horrifying even in the history. Dignae is not a man who has supernatural power, but he cares about others more than he cares about his own life and he puts himself in danger many times just to help others, so he deserves to be a hero as Dolye successfully explained in the article.
EF_Kevin 8 / 13,321 129  
Oct 12, 2015   #2
When you see that you wrote a really long sentence, it's good to think about some words that might not be necessary. Here's an example:

In the article, " A Good Man in Rwanda" for Doyle who lived those successive events in Rwanda, he could successfully convince and paint a picture in readers' minds for the heroic role of Diagne not only emotionally, but also logically and through his credibility as a witness.

This has a mistake, and you write well so I bet you can already see it! There are a a few different ways you could correct it. The best way to correct it might be to split it into two sentences in whatever way you like.

And how about the use of these two concepts together - 'paint a picture', and 'convince' ... are they both necessary? If so, then maybe convince should be changed to 'persuade'... even though it is already correct, I think persuade is a little more precise and precision = powerful writing.

But sometimes we look to improve precision by using too many modifiers. And sometimes we use too many modifiers just because we got into that rhythmic state of mind where the best writing happens, and an extraneous word is included just to keep a beat, like a drum. I think that's what happened here:

he could successfully convince and paint a picture in
The word successfully is rhythmic, but the sentence still has nice rhythm now if we cut that word out:
he could successfully convince and paint a picture in ... --- Using that word is not helpful, because 'successfully' is implied in the meaning of the sentence. That turned out to be a great example for consideration! I'm glad you posted the essay here.

HEY, I notice that when you cover 'ethos' in the essay you do not mention that you are doing the part of analysis that pertains to ethos. You called it trust. The teacher will know what you mean, but since this is a rhetorical analysis it's good to mention the term in the paragraph where you're analyzing it.

I suggest looking at each of these paragraphs (2-5) and asking yourself what is the main message expressed in the paragraph. You organized it based on logos, ethos, and pathos, but you can also add paragraph topic sentences. Let each paragraph begin with a sentence that expresses what idea is being expressed in the paragraph to support the main idea of the essay. To me, it seems that the main message of the essay is basically that he:

Persuaded readers effectively, ' not only emotionally, but also logically and through his credibility as a witness.' This shows you understand the elements or rhetoric, but now you can also reflect on the whole essay and ask yourself if you can think of one WORD or PHRASE that really captures the message that makes the essay unique. What unique point of view would you share if you were talking with a group of people who already understand the elements of rhetoric? You can go a step further and say something about your own unique observation, or a thought that arises in your mind when you think about Doyle's work. When an essay has a theme, it's really memorable and interesting.
justivy03 - / 2,366 607  
Oct 12, 2015   #3
@Youssri, the article "A good man in Rwanda" is such a good read and it made a huge impact in a lot of people's lives.

Hundreds of thousands of people got killed for no apparent reason, such a very horrific sight, but what do we get out of this events. Does it tell the world a whole new story or something that people have to be warned about. More than anything else, it brought fear and scared the lives of many.

Now going back to your essay, I believe you have digested the article very well and made sure that the level of understanding is at par with your readers.

Your sequential breakdown of the story has made this event understandable and gave it a more detailed understanding.

The in depth research and portrayal of your article criticized and collaborated the events and how it is to be taken by the general public. It does take a lot of courage to be able to right such an article and what you did is very constructionally wise article and it resonates a very positive outcome of a negative and horrific event.

As I proof read though, I saw a few typographical errors on the names of your subject so be sure to correct them before you submit.

Overall, it's a well written essay, KUDOS to you!!


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