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The Art of Persuasion
Rhetorical Devices
AP English III
Categories of Rhetorical Devices
 Terms involving emphasis,
association, clarification, and focus
 Terms involving physical organization,
transition, and disposition of
 Terms involving decoration and
 A single word or short phrase, usually
interrupting normal syntax, used to
lend emphasis to the words
immediately proximate to the
 Consists of omitting conjunctions
between words, phrases, or clauses
 In a list of items, asyndeton gives the
effect of multiplicity, of an
extemporaneous rather than a
labored account
 Use of a conjunction between each
word, phrase, or clause
 Structurally the opposite of asyndeton
 Intended rhetorical effect is one of
multiplicity, energetic enumeration,
and building up
 Deliberately expresses an idea as less
important than it actually is either for
ironic emphasis or for politeness and
 Please learn to spell this word
 Recurrent syntactical similarity
 Several part of a sentence or several
sentences are expressed similarly to
show that the ideas in the parts or
sentences are equal in importance
 Adds balance, rhythm, and clarity to
the sentence
 Inverted parallelism
 Repetition of grammatical structures
in inverted order
 Shows the relationship of the two
linked items in an unusual way to add
to emphasis
 Grammatically correct linkage (or
yoking together) of two or more parts
of speech by another part of speech
 Examples: one subject with two
verbs; a verb with two direct objects
 Main benefit of the linking is that it
shows relationships between ideas
and actions more clearly
 Establishes a clear, contrasting
relationship between two ideas by
joining them together in parallel
 Creates a definite and systematic
relationship between ideas
 Repetition of the same word or words
at the beginning or successive
phrases, clauses, or sentences,
commonly in conjunction with climax
and with parallelism
 Often used in conjunction with
rhetorical questions
 Counterpart to anaphora
 Repetition o f the same word or
words at the end of successive
phrases, clauses, or sentences
Please note…
 These terms are intended for use on
the multiple choice section of the
exam and in your own writing.
 They are DEVICES—not techniques—
which means you should not focus on
them in your analysis of timed