Emerson’s Essay on Education Rhetorical Analysis

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In this essay, Emerson tells us all about how education is damaged. He has a solution however. He thinks the solution is the educators. In his whole essay he has a sour tone towards the educator, however at the end, he sees things from a new perspective. In this essay, Emerson uses different shifts in tone, paradoxes, and rhetorical analysis. To start off hosessay, he says that we need to understand the children in order to create an education system that will work. Emerson uses many different types of figurative language to help us understand his point in this article.

One main thing in this article is how Emerson wants us to tell us that children should learn by nature. Throughout the entire argument he is trying to get this point across and he uses many different types of figurative language to do it. One example of personification he uses is when he says, “But this function of opening and feeding the human mind … “. This suggests that he is trying to fill the human mind with knowledge and as much information that it can hold. Another example of personification is when he says, “Nature loves analogies but not repetitions”. This means that children shouldn’t get repetitions of bad experiences in education.

In his essay, the author believes that the “will, the male power” will be of less benefit to the child than “sympathy, the female force”. He says that men mainly focus on people in the military which controls boys as it controls men. He then goes on to talk about the women. He says that they will benefit more because they will make sure that the important parts of education are enforced more than the men will. What the women enforce is more lasting and creative into the young minds of the children. Yes, men are good teachers when it comes to more manly stuff, but men mainly focus on things not involving education. Women on the other hand focus more on grammar, reading, and writing.

In this essay, Emerson uses a lot of different pronouns. The pronouns are what make the essay feel like one. The pronouns bring a sense of unity to the essay. It isn’t just what I think, it isn’t just what you think, it is what we think as one. By changing pronouns it also makes us think and ask ourselves questions to reflect upon while reading his essay. There was a time in the essay when Emerson used an anaphora while using the pronoun you. He said, “You have to work for large classes instead of individuals; you must lower your flag and reef your sails to wait for the dull sailors; you grow departmental, routinary, military almost with your discipline and college belief.” This makes us think about what we need to do to paint an image in our minds on what we can do to make us better as people.

Throughout his essay. Emerson gives us good visuals and examples as to what we can do to better our education. He gives us his well put together opinion as to why he thinks that education should be taught through nature.


Cite this paper

Emerson’s Essay on Education Rhetorical Analysis. (2020, Sep 23). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/emersons-essay-on-education/



What are the defining characteristics of Emerson's ideal education?
Emerson's ideal education is characterized by self-reliance and individualism. He believed that education should focus on developing the individual's innate abilities and encouraging them to think independently.
What does Ralph Waldo Emerson say about education?
In his essay "Self-Reliance," Emerson argues that self-sufficiency and individualism are key components of a successful life, and that formal education often works to stifle these qualities.
What is the main idea of Emerson's essay?
Emerson argues that self-reliance is the key to achieving success in life. He believes that individuals who are able to think for themselves and rely on their own judgement are more likely to be successful than those who blindly follow the opinions of others.
What is the purpose of Emerson's essay education?
Essayist, poet, and lecturer, Ralph Waldo Emerson, scrutinizes the educational system of the nineteenth century in his essay “Education”. Emerson's purpose is to exploit the faults within the methods of teaching that were practiced and persuade educators to shift to the natural method .
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