Rhetorical Analysis “When Volunteerism Isn’t Normal” by Lynn Steirer

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In l997 the author Lynn Steirer was a student at Northampton County area Community College when she wrote “When Volunteerism Isn’t Normal”. It was published in the New York Times in a forum of current issues opposite the editorial page. (515). It is evident that her audience was the general American public which would bring about the personal opinion of the reader. She laid out her thesis in the first paragraph which definitely caught my attention. Steirer stated that the school board turned its back on the principle for which it was named, (Liberty). The students of this school were required to perform a number of mandatory volunteer service hours in order to receive their diploma. The author’s purpose was to persuade her audience that volunteering should not be mandatory. She reviews the history of the beginning of the program that was initiated by President Clinton, who apparently believed community service should be mandatory for graduation. The tone was set early in this essay when the author said “This forced me to make a decision”(515). She proceeded with a...

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