Rhetorical Analysis of a Satirical Comic

The image attached are of our dear former president and first lady and they just so happen to be the perfect people to is for satirical comics. The satire genre is based upon taking a serious matter and using comedic devices to discuss it. As you can see in this instance, the comics audience are everyday people seeing as it’s a political editorial from a newspaper. They want this to reach the general public so that they can see that there’s something wrong in the way the Clintons are treated.

The purpose is to show that they seem to be coated in Teflon which for those who don’t know is a non-stick coating usually applied to cookware. Nothing they seem to do ever sticks to them so they never face any consequences for there actions and that’s mainly due to the public. The author wants to show that this is exclusive to the Clintons which is why he trademarked the product with their name. The public has placed this shield around them due to how well Bill’s presidency went and now we see the consequences. The artist shows what the “Clinton” spray protects against and they’re all terrible things yet we aren’t doing anything about it and we can’t do anything about it at this point.

The writer, or in this case artist, is Matt Wuerker and his art is centralized around politics. He has won a Pulitzer Prize and is also an American himself. This adds to the credibility of the piece because he is well versed in this line of work and is recognized for it and is an American himself instead of an outsider judging the situation which is an example of ethos. An example of him using logos to persuade the audience is his use of Teflon since its a nonstick spray and that connection makes sense to the treatment of the Clintons. His use a pathos is the most prominent because the comic itself is meant to be humorous so automatically it can and will attract people.

The Flaw In Determining What’s “Real”

 

I don’t read “real”  books anymore. I don’t believe I’ve finished a book from cover to cover unless it was on my phone and written by some 16 year old in Nevada. Weirdly enough, I don’t think I want to pick up a real book again yet I love to read. There isn’t a second of the day where I wouldn’t be caught reading something yet its never seen because it all exists on my phone.

 

This infatuation with books created by non-published authors started in the 7th grade. I had a very close friend, my best friend to this day actually, introduce me to an app called Wattpad.

 

“Why are you always on your phone in class? You know she’s always watching us and you’ll get caught.” I said. She looked at me as if to say ‘do you believe I actually care about getting caught?’ And of course, she didn’t. She had a rebellious streak since I met her so, instead of putting the phone away she turns the screen towards me.

 

“I’m reading. That’s the point of silent reading time right?” she responded. She wasn’t exactly wrong but she wasn’t right either. We were supposed to under the teacher’s directions, pick a book at our reading level and read for 30 mins then log it. It was in every aspect a waste of time because the books were boring so most people just took naps or snuck in doing their homework for the next class. I thought it was dumb because my reading level restricted me. I was stuck at a level Y all because I couldn’t answer a question right on the comprehension test after the reading. I don’t believe it’s because I couldn’t answer the question correctly, I just didn’t answer in a way rudimentary education demanded. I know I wasn’t the only one discouraged because my imagination was just too broad when it came to drawing my own conclusions. 

 

I take a peek at her phone and yeah she’s actually reading.

 

“It’s called Wattpad.” She answered my unasked question. I’m sure the curiosity showed via my facial expression.

 

“It’s an app where you can read books written by other people.” She continued, “You can write books on here too. I started writing my own.” and her saying that really piqued my interest.

 

“So these are made by actual people?” I ask. Thinking about it now, published books are made by actual people as well, but they feel different. I wanted to know more and she recommended I create an account so I did. “Spiceberry224”  with her cringe-worthy name was born in October of 2012 (and is still on Wattpad today just many name changes later). I added book after book to my library and I couldn’t stop reading. It baffled me how some people my age we’re getting to express themselves while I was still writing essays on the meaning of metaphors in a short story that I can’t remember today.

 

From that day on I never touched a real book again. To me what I was reading held more weight in its words than all the books on the shelf combined. I connected more with the 17-year-old attempting to write a romance novel than Shakespeare writing a tragic story about these two idiots falling in love and causing multiple deaths in a matter of four days. Yet schools would rather we read the latter as if they deserve more credit because their books have two pieces of cardstock binding them together. I later began to write on Wattpad seeing as I got inspired by books I was reading. How could a book that prompted me to begin writing and enjoying doing so be discredited by a system of learning because of something as silly as not having a publishing company backing it? It seems a bit regressive for schools to encourage higher learning while keeping you stuck in a box made way back in the 17th century. 

 

I could name reasons all day as to why our education system isn’t the best environment for a reader or writer, but I’ll end saying just one last thing: I refuse to let education determine what is and isn’t acceptable to read and write anymore. It’s the equivalent of letting a stranger choose what food you like to eat; it’s completely nonsensical because nobody but you should be able to determine these things. I have actually learned while reading these books and I have advanced as a writer by picking up proper grammar and vocabulary along the way. I will continue reading on Wattpad, Webtoons, Webnovel, and any other unconventional reading app that stimulates my mind to create. Otherwise, I’d have to say my life as a reader would be boring and meet a slow uneventful demise.

Personal Experience

My first experience of wanting to read and write on a daily basis was in 7th grade when I was introduced to the app Wattpad. The app on its surface was nothing too special, only being made for people to be able to read and write books. Of course that’s what it was back in 2012 when I had first joined. Now it’s something more with writing contests being hosted, people being recognized and publishing books and getting movie deals or getting paid by Wattpad for the writing that they put up there; it’s really expanded into something amazing. Back in 2012, I had just made an account due to a recommendation from a friend. She was already reading books on there and she had told me I should read this one book which she had lent me her phone to skim over and I was really interested. I then made an account and it quickly became an addiction for me. I just wanted to read all the time. The books that people made on there were more interesting than any hardcover book I had ever picked up. I downloaded the app on my phone and was reading to and from school, in the middle of English class on the laptops we were given, at lunch and eventually I began to write too. My first-ever story, still incomplete to this day, was supposed to be a twist on “Romeo and Juliet”  by Shakespeare and it essentially followed the plot that it was never the families that hated each other, but Romeo and Juliet did. Despite nobody actually reading my stories I wouldn’t get discouraged because it made me learn about myself as a writer. I was very descriptive when it came to writing my stories and would have pages just full of imagery. Somewhere along the line it helped me begin to do better when it came to my writing projects in class. If not for Wattpad I probably wouldn’t be at all interested in reading and writing like I am now nor would I be any good at it.

Response to “Learning To Read” by Malcolm X

I believe that I resonated with “Learning to Read”  by Malcolm X because although I did not have any problem being able to read and write, I did have problems with communication just like he did because of my boundaries of knowing one way to speak. I didn’t know how to properly communicate with people and even today, it does become quite a problem in situations where I can’t express myself. I know so many words in English and could write the most beautiful essay yet somehow when people are involved I stumble over words and I get nervous and the English language becomes a blur to me. At one point in time, just as Malcolm X did, I decided I needed to re-evaluate my comprehension of what is perceived as the  common English language in my community AKA slang, so I did the only reasonable thing which was to study the way people interacted, how they spoke and how to speak like them. At first it was complicated because you don’t just automatically know what words mean, you hear them and figure out by example what it is supposed to mean. Only then can you say “okay this is how I’m supposed to use said word” and then apply that knowledge. Without studying first I would have felt as Malcolm did when he read books and skipped what he didn’t understand. I would have been foolish to jump in head first into speaking without knowing what I was saying and luckily I understood that. At one point I finally caught up and it felt really nice to be able to connect with other people of my age or just other people in general. Even if they weren’t necessarily my age I could finally understand what they were saying and I could talk to them and not have them say I sound a specific way, as if I had no idea what was going on. Just standing back and actually taking the time to expand the little bit of English that I know, I am now able to communicate on so many different levels. It’s a liberating feeling to not feel restricted by whatever your circumstance is and I believe that’s exactly how Malcolm felt which is why he never stopped reading and writing when he could. You get to experience new things from such a small thing as broadening your vocabulary and every experience onwards brings some form of joy. Now I can code switch whenever I’m talking to someone. I know slang, so I can talk to people on a day to day basis on the street, I know “proper”  English, so I’m able to speak to somebody on the phone as if I were a professional with every ounce of slang gone and I probably know other forms of English as well through reading, writing, and speaking. Continue reading “Response to “Learning To Read” by Malcolm X”