When writing persuasively, this can be a great way to respond to potential detractors of your argument.
Suppose you want to convince your neighborhood to add a community garden, but you think that people might focus on the amount of work required.
Anacoluthon is a fancy word for a disruption in the expected grammar or syntax of a sentence.
That doesn’t mean that you misspoke—using anacoluthon means that you’ve deliberately subverted your reader’s expectations to make a point.
Antanagoge is the balancing of a negative with a positive.
For example, the common phrase, “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade,” is antanagoge—it suggests a negative (lots of lemons) and follows that up with a positive (make lemonade).
A lot of things that you would think of as just regular everyday modes of communicating are actually rhetorical devices That’s because ‘rhetorical devices’ is more or less a fancy way of saying ‘communication tools.’ Most people don’t plan out their use of rhetorical devices in communication, both because nobody thinks, “now would be a good time to use synecdoche in this conversation with my grocery clerk,” and because we use them so frequently that they don’t really register as “rhetorical devices.” How often have you said something like, “when pigs fly!
” Of those times, how often have you thought, “I’m using a rhetorical device! However, being aware of what they are and how to use them can strengthen your communication, whether you do a lot of big speeches, write persuasive papers, or just argue with your friends about a TV show you all like.
Rhetorical devices can function at all levels: words, sentences, paragraphs, and beyond.
Some rhetorical devices are just a single word, such as onomatopoeia.