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Rhetorical Analysis "champagne Taste and Beer Budget"

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Rhetorical Analysis

In "Champagne Taste, Beer Budget" Delia Cleveland attempts to warn her readers of the dangers of over-shopping. Cleveland uses her knowledge, that she gained by experiencing the consequences, to stop others from doing so. She utilizes ethos, pathos, and logos to keep the readers interested in what they are reading.

Cleveland begins by talking about the labels that everyone adores so much in our society. She stresses that people do not need to be so obsessed with what other people accept as trendy. She calls such behavior 'crazy' and to show examples she tells the emotional story she has. When she was in school, Cleveland did not worry about her work, she only worried about what people were thinking about what she wore that day; everyday was new. It did not matter to her if she had looked great the day before because, in her mind, if she did not carry this on to the next day there was no point. She worked hard to earn a paycheck and instead of saving, she threw all of her money away, towards the newest clothing. She ends up failing an entire grade and having to finish her schooling elsewhere, all because of her need for fashion. Cleveland hopes that she can create an idea for young people. She hopes that through her story, through the emotion, that young people will not waste their hard earned money on useless items like she did, but to use it for things that grow your knowledge in culture, or the arts, or education in general.

Cleveland's article is written in chronological order, for the most part. Because of this, the reader can feel like they are reliving the moments with her. They can feel the confidence she feels when she had all of the latest fashions, which led her to feel comfortable in spending every dollar she had on clothes. The reader can also experience the self-humiliation that Cleveland experienced when she finally realized that how she was living was not acceptable. The thesis of her story seems to be found not at the beginning or the end of the story but somewhere in the middle. Cleveland says, "I realized I had sacrificed an important part of my life for material stuff that wasn't benefiting me at all." This truly brings all of her ideas together into one sentence. She goes from telling her story of pointless wasting to pointing out the even worse reality of what everyone around us seems to be doing. She uses an example of someone who has never been hiking wearing expensive hiking boots. She wants to exemplify the pointlessness of the purchases that people are making. She states, "I'm not swaggering around in over-priced Italian shoes till I can book a trip to Italy." This humorous remark really makes readers believe how dumb it is to make purchases like this. Truly all Cleveland wants her readers to do is to go out and experience life; instead of going and buying the look of the experience.




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