Analysis: Why the US is Destroying its Education System by Chris Hedges

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Chris Hedges, the author of the article “Why the United States is Destroying Its Education System” attempts to persuade his audience to agree with his argument through the use of rhetoric. In this text critique, I will thoroughly analyze the effectiveness of his article by highlighting important premises, tropes, ideographs, and narratives. He claims that the United States’ education system is on a downward spiral due to education reform and the influence of corporate power.
Chris’ article is considered a normative argument due to the fact that it is primarily focused around political as well as ethical matters. Because his argument is considered normative, it must have a warrant. According to Richard A. Quantz, “a warrant is a rule or principle that connects the rest of the premises to the claim” (Quantz, 2012, p.4). The warrant present in this article is that teachers should teach students information that prepares them for the future. While the claim supports the political aspect of a normative argument, the warrant supports the ethical aspect of a normative argument. The claim can be seen as political because it addresses the struggle for power. Likewise, the warrant can be seen as ethical because it addresses what is morally right. To be fair to children, teachers need to provide them with knowledge that will allow them prosper. Although his argument is labeled as normative, Chris Hedges uses a couple of kinds of other premises in order to strengthen and better support his argument. He includes empirical, and conceptual premises.
The first type of premise he uses is an empirical premise. “Empirical premises use empirical evidence that appeals to facts about the world obtained through observing or measuring the world” (Quant...

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...hey are told and obeying the rules. This narrative supports the claim of the article because it criticizes the tests that have resulted from excessive reforms. In conclusion, I believe that the narratives as well as all the other rhetorical devices used in the article made Chris Hedges’ argument stronger and more persuasive.

Works Cited

Hedges, C. (2011, April 11). Why the United States is destroying its education system. Truthdig. Retrieved from
McAdoo, M. (2013, January 31). Teacher attrition up after recession-driven lull. United Federation of Teachers. Retrieved from
Quantz, R. A. (2012, July 23). Essential essay #3a: Text analysis. Unpublished manuscript, Miami University, Oxford, OH.

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