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Obama Speech

Here's a link to the speech. It begins at 3:30. Or try THIS ONE.

Apparently he gave his speech at 1:30 this afternoon. Sorry about that. Still, watch it (it should be posted/made public and/or replayed soon) and the assignment stands as is. HERE is a transcript of his speech for your reference, but you still need to watch it. Also, I tweeted a Washington Post article and a Huffington Post article that respond to Obama's student address (it's over on the right in that Twitter box that's usually empty) and HERE is another article about it just for good measure.

Do I need to read those? You're wondering. Well, no I guess not. You don't need to read them if you don't want to be informed about the world and don't care about your education and thus your life. (Logical fallacies of sentimental appeal and non sequitur and probably ten others.) But in all seriousness, I do think these are valuable to read, look at, and take up in some way, but no part of the assignment it particularly tied to any of them. They're just informative and thought-provoking.

Your assignment is this: Watch Obama's address sometime when you can (so, when it is made public and repeated, and You Tubed, and archived on news websites like and perform an informal, yet substantive and thoughtful rhetorical analysis. Post said analysis on your blog by Sunday __:00 (time to be determined, see poll). You may post it sooner if you wish.

Whaaaaaa? You say. No worries, you have the resources you need. You were given a "Rhetorical Analysis" sheet not too long ago and you are reading through the chapter in EAA all about speeches (Chapter 17: Spoken Arguments) and it literally walks you through how to do this. Speech analysis = rhetorical analysis of a speech. Make sure you comment on the following: tone, intonation, cadence, posture, gestures, general appearance, use of appeals, argument, diction -- okay, so that's like everything. But because this is spoken, you need to comment on how it sounds and how he looks while speaking, in addition to the usual stuff.

Don't freak out, this isn't huge. Your usual blog posts are 5 points, this one is 10 points. Use this as practice for those cryptic "things to come" that matter a whole lot. 

If you have questions, email me. It's way easier than commenting on my blog. It's also private so people can't see your questions. You also should ask those questions sooner rather than later. If you wait until Sunday, I will be crabby with you. This weekend is Homecoming. Just to it tonight if at all humanly possible. If you cannot, do it tomorrow night. I know that on Friday you will be all busy with the parade and the football game and then on Saturday you have to go get a spray tan and get your nails and hair done and get all gussied up for the dance -- oh, wait, it's a blacklight dance so you'll all probably just come in jeans.

In any case, it's a busy weekend. Don't wait.


Logical Fallacies

You should do this because I said so!

Step one: go to my website and then to your course page

Step two: find the LOGICAL FALLACIES item toward the bottom. Print it.

Step three: find resources on logical fallacies to help you with this task. Start with your book, Everything's An Argument (ch 19) and then take to the internet. Try this or this. Google this, people, Google this. Here's yet another site that deals with logical fallacies. There are many others. Go find them!

Step four:  Read the directions.

Step five:Work your way through the examples. There are about 20 of them; you needn't do all of them, but do at least 10. Write on the sheet (in the margins) or on another sheet of paper. The goal is to sniff out and name the logical fallacies present in the arguments provided. It will require full attention and focus. Shut out everything else and let your brain work. Is the argument logical? Do the premises lead to the conclusion? When you think you've detected the fallacy and correctly named it, make sure you will remember tomorrow why you thought it was that one. If you cannot figure out what to name it, at least explain how the argument works (or doesn't). Explain the problem.

BLA meeting #1 tomorrow. Make sure you review the handout about this practice and that everyone knows what to do for tomorrow and is ready to fully participate. 

Literacy Narrative re-writes are due on Friday. 


Holy Pathos, Batman!

These are just a few of many advertisements, campaigns, and PSAs that primarily use pathos (emotional appeals) to make their arguments. Or at least to make you take notice of their arguments. Feel free to link/embed any other similarly emotionally-charged videos that you find on your blog.

Some are powerful and effective, others are way over-the-top and basically rely on emotional warfare to make their point. Please be warned of the content if you are sensitive to any of these topics. The animated anti-bullying video is especially sensitive as it involves the hard issue of suicide as related to bullying.


Anti-bullying animation/poem

Mom Prison

Pfizer "More Than Drugs"

Kids see, kids do

Sad Monkeys Environmental Ad



Epic CRJ Fail

Sorry folks, I forgot to collect your CRJs today. Well, 1st block, this mostly applies to you. It was mid-passing time when I realized this fatal mistake. I explained my realization to block 2. In an effort to be fair, I decided to collect them tomorrow instead of collecting some from one class today and some from the other class tomorrow. I hope you understand. Hey, I cut all y'all some serious slack on the blogging front.

Here's how this will go down:

Tomorrow, you will skip into class with a smile plastered onto your bright-and-shining face because you love AP Lang/Comp already, and you will produce, with a flourish, your glimmering specimen of a CRJ before I forget. Again.

Notice, I said CRJ. As in, just one. You wrote a CRJ for Didion and one for Orwell. Two of them. I just want one and you may choose which one to give me. It will be a for-points thing, but I know you're still getting the hang of it.

Capisce? Bene. That's in Italian BTW, and BTW means "by-the-way" in teenage/texting slang.

Do you want to drop my class yet? Ha. Too bad.


Stolen Post

I was just going to write about this very same topic and point you to the very same website. Prokott beat me to it, so I'm stealing this from her. What's super duper awesome is that she said it almost exactly the same way I would. Check it out. Now. Go. Click on it!

"When Are We Gonna Get Our Essays Back?": "I hate you Ms. Prokott, I can't write a short nar...: For those of you who are struggling with keeping your narrative short, specific, and lyrical, I turn you to one of the greatest creative non...

Orwellian Political Speech