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Rebecca V.
University teaching associate and experienced writer
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Writing
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Question:

What function does pathos have in an argumentative paper? How does author's use pathos to persuade their readers?

Rebecca V.
Answer:

Pathos is an appeal to the reader's emotions. In an argumentative paper, an author might use stories about real people, or fictionalized and/or dramatized versions of these stories, to get their reader to connect to their subject. This humanizes their argument, and creates an empathetic response in the reader. As an example, in a paper supporting immigration reform, the author might use primarily first-hand accounts of the lives of real undocumented immigrants to make the reader feel empathetic toward the people whose lives would be impacted by policy changes.

Literature
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Question:

How does Nathaniel Hawthorne use the color red as a symbol in his novel "The Scarlet Letter"?

Rebecca V.
Answer:

In The Scarlet Letter, Hawthorne uses the color red to symbolize Hester Prynne's impurity. The red "A" on her chest, which brands her as an adulterer, is symbolic of her status as a social pariah in conservative New England. In literature, red often is associate with romance, lust, and violence -- Hawthorne's choice to make Prynne's "A" red demonstrates his intention to associate her with these concepts.

Folklore and Mythology
TutorMe
Question:

How can reading folklore from various regions help us understand the cultural values of the society from which the folklore originates?

Rebecca V.
Answer:

Folklore and mythology are often imbued with moral, ethical, and social codes. The lessons that are taught can help us determine what certain cultures valued in the past, and the stories that continue to be told can tell us about which values are still relevant. Common themes in folklore and mythology can also help readers and academics determine what certain cultures may value -- for instance, in folk tales where characters are often lured by food, you might say that eating and food security are important to the culture of that region.

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