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Audience: New and future members of your academic discourse community
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Purpose: To examine and analyze the rhetorical elements of a text intended to be read by professionals within your DC, and explain what distinguishes such a text from one written for a “general audience” of non-specialists.
Length: 3-4 pages
Instructions: Identify a professional journal (in some cases, these may exist online) used by members of your DC. From it, choose any article and analyze it rhetorically to see what it reveals about the conventions of writing within your field.
Then, find another article on the same topic that is written for a mainstream, general audience (i.e., for people who are not members of the DC). Compare the two articles. What differences do you notice about how the topic is treated for the two types of readers? How do the articles differ in purpose, tone, persona, structure, and use of evidence?
While analyzing each document, use the attached set of Rhetorical Analysis Questions to guide you.
Note that your main goal here is not to summarize the articles. Instead, you should be analyzing the authors’ rhetorical choices in order to better understand how your DC communicates.
When writing your analysis, make sure you briefly introduce and describe each of the articles, but don’t get bogged down in the content — keep the goal of the assignment in mind. Additionally, make sure to include a correctly formatted citation for each article, in either APA, MLA, CMS, or another established style, depending on the conventions of your DC.