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In Ralph Waldo Emerson's essay, "Education," identify examples of rhetorical...

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magnotta | Student, Undergraduate | Valedictorian

Posted October 20, 2011 at 7:07 PM via web

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In Ralph Waldo Emerson's essay, "Education," identify examples of rhetorical strategies in paragraph 13, and explain their effect.

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accessteacher | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted October 20, 2011 at 8:26 PM (Answer #1)

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The text that I can find of this essay by Emerson gives the following in the thirteenth paragraph:

Whilst thus the world exists for the mind; whilst thus the man is ever invited inward into shining realms of knowledge and power by the shows of the world, which interpret to him the infinitude of his own consciousness--it becomes the office of a just education to awaken him to the knowledge of this fact.

In terms of rhetorical strategies, what is interesting about this paragraph is the way in which the pacing leads up to the conclusion that Emerson makes in the final section. Note that this paragraph is actually all one sentence, and the thoughts and ideas expressed in the first half, which basically argue that the world at the same time urges us to learn more whilst pointing out our lack of awareness, is rounded off by the concluding statement that ends this paragraph, which argues that the purpose of education is to help us realise both our lack of awareness and knowledge and to aid us in discovering more about it.

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