Aristotelian Proof Project

Nov 30, 2021 | 0 comments

Nov 30, 2021 | Writing Guide | 0 comments

Aristotle’s rhetoric has been used over the years in the development of art. The concept was not only used by writers but also by Roman teachers who applied the aspects of Aristotle doctrine. Both the teachers and writers who relied on the Aristotelian doctrine were not interested in his authentic interpretation or his works. They were instead focused on the interpretation and application of Aristotle rhetoric work. In this way, the Aristotle work has become history but not a philosophy. Importantly, the concept has been applied by artists to pass a message of persuasion either in photos, movies, video or images. Essentially, Aristotle’s rhetoric triangle and three proofs have been used to analyses artistic works for example photos, videos, images, and movies. The paper presents an analysis of a photo using Aristotle’s three proofs of pathos, ethos, and logos. The photo selected is of an imaginary homeless person.

Aristotelian Proof Project

The photo represents an image of a homeless person resting next to a wall on the street. His legs are stretched to the road while he is supporting his head and the rest of the body on the wall. The artist used imaginary drawing lines to add home comfort to the image. The lines show the homeless man resting on a couch. Other house accessories like a lamp stand and pictures on the wall have also been indicated.
In addition to the rhetorical triangle, Aristotle developed three appeals called the three proofs that can be used by artists to persuade their audience (Click 161). They are the ethos, logos, and pathos in Greek. Ethos to begin with, refers to how credible or trustworthy the artist is and how knowledgeable he or she is concerning the background of his work. In the photo selected of a homeless man, the artist is aware of the conditions of homeless people. They do not have the comforts of a couch and puffs to stretch their legs when they are tired. Moreover, they do not have pillow cases to support their heads when they feel neck fatigue. The pictures on the wall represent the image of the homeless man and a lamp stand to mean that they do not have lights in the places they sleep. According to Click (162), it is through the ethos that the artist’s experience can be shown. In the image, the message is clearly passed showing the artist is an expert and has relevant experience. The message in the photo is passed in a way attracts the sympathy of the audience or the viewers.
Pathos, on the other hand, is a Greek word meaning suffering or experience. It is associated with emotions such as sympathies that are meant to draw the attention of the viewers. The main purpose of pathos in artistic work is to help the viewers or the audience to identify with the artist. As he or she passes the message to the viewers or audience, it is important they experience the same feeling like the artist. In the photo, the image of the homeless and the imaginary lines showing his assumed home environment emotionally shows the viewer how the homeless man would feel when he had a home. The artist ensured the viewers not only saw the image of the homeless man, but they also imagined how his life would have been if he was at his home making them to fell sympathy. Again, looking at the face of the homeless man, he looks tired and torn with his head bending to one side showing the discomfort he is undergoing. Overall, the intension of the artist is to make his or her viewers suffer through imagination. He or she wants the viewers to have the same experience or suffering he or she had undergone. The photo therefore instills a feeling of sympathy on the viewers.
Lastly, logos refer to how clear the message, the image, the photo is, in terms of its effectiveness, and logic of supporting evidence. The concepts in the message or the photo should be backed with appropriate and reasonable details (Click 181). In the photo of an imaginary home for a homeless person, the message is clear that the man does not have a home. The setting is on the street, and the photo might have been taken when the man was resting close to a wall. The artist then decided to add home comforts to the picture. On the wall, the artist drew hanging pictures on the wall and a lamp stand. Right below the man, he or she drew a couch and a puff for the man to rest his legs. Even though that imaginary comfort is well communicated to the viewers, the artist as well retained the agony in the face of the homeless man. The man’s sitting position is not as comfortable as he had to bend his head to one side showing a lot of neck difficulty in the picture. According to logos, the information is enough, relevant and effective in helping the viewers to understand the conditions of living as a homeless person.

Works Cited
Crick, Nathan. Rhetorical Public Speaking: Civic Engagement in the Digital Age, New York, NY: Routledge, 2017.