R Carson Rhetoric Analysis Essay

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A Rhetoric Analysis of:
“The Obligation to Endure”
By Rachel Carson

The following involves the second chapter of Carson’s book, Silent Spring that was written in 1962. In this chapter Carson argues persuasively the adverse impacts of pesticides upon the environment and the risks on human health and the environment associated with these “genetic invaders” (Carson, 1962). Many of the extremely diverse people from Carson’s audience targeted were under the impression that chemicals like DDT, at that time in history, were safe for their health. Carson reconciles and attempts to persuade the public to consider the idea that DDT, which in the 1950s and 60s was one of the many chemical pesticides being manufactured and sold to
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Carson appeals to anyone that is concerned with the global environment and the future of humanity by focusing on what the world would be like in the absence of mutated creatures, and noticeably since it was written during the 1950s, I felt the subsequent statement made in Carson’s essay was very powerful. Carson states, “It is ironic to think that man might determine his own future by something as seemingly trivial as the choice of an insect spray” (Carson 1962). An example of the severity of this issue is when Rachel Carson was allowed to address the Supreme Court on this issue. Perhaps this essay also was targeted towards certain companies at the time, such as DuPont. Carson’s essay foreshadows the environmental movement of the 60′s and was considered among scholars to be “one of the most influential essays since the writings of Henry David Thoreau in Walden Pond” (Trewayas, 2012). Carson appeals to the arousal of the basic emotions such as the arousal of fear in the public, but not in such a way that would overly scare someone and turn them off due to excessiveness. Carson also appeals to pathos, or the emotions, by morally questioning the “highly intelligent” creators of these pesticides. Carson believes illogical reasoning and poor decisions based on ‘collapsible evidence’ threaten the future existence of mankind (Carson,

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