The Weight Of Clinkscale: Personal Narrative

1038 Words 5 Pages
Who are you? This simplistic question can conjure a variety of answers depending on the person responding. The most intriguing and successful replies arise from those who respond with the ideal criteria described by Ramsdell (2010) in “Storytelling, Narration, and the ‘Who I Am’ Story”. Based on Ramsdell’s criteria for the “Who I Am” story, it is evident that writers employ similar aspects into their writing, as seen in Sedaris’ (2000) “Me Talk Pretty One Day”, and in my personal literacy narrative, “The Weight of Clinkscale: A Learning Experience”. Both narratives show a story rather than tell it, appeal greatly to emotion, and follow an overall narrative arc which allow for the reader to have a better engagement with the piece. In turn, this …show more content…
Illustrating sounds and smells allow for the audience to be drawn into the piece, and the diction further allows for the work to be appealing (p.279). Sedaris (2000) appealed to emotion in various manners throughout his narrative, most notably when he described his state of mind in reference to his French class:
I was convinced that everything I said was wrong… I knew my fear was getting the best of me when I started wondering why they don’t sell cuts of meat in vending machines. My only comfort was the knowledge that I was not alone. (p. 172)
The audience is able to establish a sense of empathy towards Sedaris because it is probable that they, too, have been in a compromising situation which ultimately tore all their hopes and aspirations down. This is significant because it creates a greater connection between the audience and author, which allows for the piece to be more successful in achieving its purpose. Similarly, the descriptions in my narrative about my third-grade learning environment allow for the audience to be transported to their childhood classrooms and evoke memories, whether to compare to mine or simply reminisce. Most forms of rhetoric utilize the elements ethos, logos, and pathos (i.e. credibility, logic, and emotion). However, in order to make a piece more effective, a writer must become acquainted with
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278). The exposition, rising action, climax, falling action, resolution, and critical reflection are all essential elements of any story, because they allow for the piece to be easy to follow, and insures that the audience comprehends the importance of the story. For example, Sedaris (2000) reached his critical reflection at the end of his narrative when he states, “Understanding doesn’t mean that you can suddenly speak the language. Far from it. It’s a small step, nothing more, yet its rewards are intoxicating and deceptive” (p. 173). Critical reflections provide clarity on the purpose of a story, demonstrating its significance. The reflection I presented in my narrative was that we never stop learning; through positive an negative experiences, we continuously learn and grow as people. Furthermore, these elements serve as an outline for the audience to follow and create a greater sense of credibility by demonstrating that the author is aware of an effective way to present a story, so that the purpose is met.
All in all, Ramsdell’s criteria for the Who I Am story allows readers and writers to be aware of effective ways to convey the significance of their pieces by showing a story rather than telling it, appealing to the audience’s emotion, and including all

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