Joan Didion On Keeping A Notebook Summary

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Joan Didion in her essay, “On Keeping a Notebook”, stresses that keeping a notebook is not like keeping a journal. Didion supports her claim by describing entries that are in her notebook. The author’s purpose is to enlighten the reader as to what a notebook is. The author writes in a nostalgic tone for those who are reading the essay, so that they can relate to her. She uses rhetorical appeals; such as flashback, pathos, and imagery to name a few. By using these devices she helps capture the reader’s attention. Didion opens up her essay by using an entry from her notebook. When writing in her notebook, she writes down things that interest her and refers back to them. The reference of a memory or event is called flashback. …show more content…

Imagery is when the author presents a mental image through descriptive words. One prime example of imagery that the author uses is in paragraph 3; where she tells of a moment between a man and a woman. In this narration she states the time, year, outfit of each character described, and what the female character was doing. These details might come across as irrelevant, or unnecessary, but this is Didions way of showing what the blueprint of notebook it. Using imagery reinforces the foundation of the essay, and what the essay’s mission was. “On Keeping a Notebook”, used many different types of rhetorical devices and although many of them weren’t mentioned, they still played an imperative role in the formation of the essay. The three mentioned previously were; flashback, pathos, and imagery. Individually, each played a paramount part in the formation of the essay. Of the three, the one that laid the cornerstone was pathos. Pathos was what every other device alluded to. In conclusion to this, Joan Didion’s essay had a sufficient amount of rhetorical devices and each had an important role in the

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