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A Practice AP Rhetorical Analysis

            A Journalist for the Washington Post, Teresa Wiltz in her essay Popular Culture in the Aftermath of Sept. 11 Is a Chorus without a Hook, a Movie without an Ending delineates and exemplifies the reaction of popular culture after 9/11. Wiltz's purpose was to tell how people look towards pop. culture in order to seek , especially after a tragedy. Wiltz's tone starts off gloomy, but shifts to an educative one in order to show how media helped people years ago. Wiltz uses stern syntax and solemn diction to help achieve her purpose. .
             Wiltz uses "solemn" diction in her first section. Wiltz uses words such as "reeling","shook", "throat-clearing", "tumbling", "vanity", "blotting" and "earnestness". Its as if Wiltz is trying to be serious in order to get the reader to believe how pop culture breaks the ice to stay relevant and to make sure to not unsettle anybody after a tragedy. She also uses edgy diction to achieve her purpose in the beginning of the essay. She writes "vanity", "irony", "smarty-pants" and "comedy" followed by "life-support". She talks as if the phrases are living 9-11s. This is also where she establishes her first tone of being "earnest" trying to be in all seriousness. In the next section "comfort in continuity" her tone shifts from "earnest" to "humorous", making fun of the way pop culture wants people to feel better. She uses "parody" diction such as "intensity", "gradually", "blip", "tsunami", "heavy-handed", "treatise", and "whipped". Its as if her point is in her tone, people don't want to feel bad while a tragedy just occurred, so by being humorous, pop culture does the same. Finally her tone shifts again to a more "cynical" tone judging everything that happens.

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