Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Critiquing the United Way Advocacy Ad

1. The font that is used is a dark font, which gives the ad a serious undertone. This may create a solemn effect, and stresses the importance of the issue. The ad only contains one subject and its shadow right in the centre of the ad. This provides the intended focal point, and the audience would be drawn to the subject rather than the white plain background. This focal point serves to emphasise the message of the ad, stressing the juxtapositions of the sporty girl, and her distressed ‘impregnated’ shadow. I find these visual techniques effective, as it was able to draw an emotional response from me. The ad was presented effectively enough that I was able to focus on the centre picture (what the creators intended).

2. The statistic compliments the argument that a high percentage of teenagers are liable to experiment with sex if they do not participate in extra curricular activities. This may mean that, teens without any productive past time hobbies, are more likely to keep themselves occupied by ‘experimenting’ with adult or wrongful acts prematurely.

3. The values that the ad appeals to the traditional times where back then, children are ‘innocent,’ whilst compared to today, children are growing up ‘way too fast,’ experimenting with drugs and sex at an earlier age. The ad effectively chose a white blond girl playing basketball to highlight that, even ‘perfect’ and ‘beautiful’ girls are being affected by this phenomenon. This girl seems to depict a ‘perfect’ role model, sporty, beautiful and talented. However, the juxtaposition of her pregnant shadow in the background causes concern and horror as the audience would realise that, role models such as she were affected, than other girls would follow suit.

In relation to audience-based reasons, this advertisement may target and be persuasive to teenagers themselves, as it shows the horrific result of what may happen if they did not have a productive past time. Some teenagers may see how their futures and body will be affected through the depressed shadow of the girl.

4. If teenagers are not participating in extra curricular activities, they may result in going home and subjecting themselves to the wonderful world of television. Due to the increase in crime and sex related movies, children may be spurred to go and experiment what they see on television themselves. Thus, due to the decreased participation in extra curricular activities induces increased television time. Television time therefore is the cause for the increased teen parent rate. Thereby, it can be argued that decreased after school activities and teen pregnancy are bound by a correlation, not a cause and effect relationship.

Monday, October 1, 2007

Critiquing "The Monster That Is High School"

  1. The social priorities of schools -> concentrate more on popular students such as cheerleaders and jocks -> popular cliques gets their way (manages to get away with things because they’re just kids) -> popular cliques abuse this privilege and bullies other ‘non popular’ students -> ‘non popular’ students become mentally unstable due to the abuse at school and the lack of help from school officials -> ‘unpopular’ student becomes emotionally unstable and breaks under social pressure -> ‘unpopular’ student commits a massacre at school.

Daeha Ko’s argument was persuasive since he used his personal experiences and analogies to be able to personally relate to those students who felt and were in the same situation as he was. This is a persuasive factor of Daeha Ko’s argument, since it emotionally appealed to the audience, creating anger and frustration amongst his readers. However, some readers may view him (the author) to be a little psychotic, and dismiss his views as ‘crazy.’ Therefore, depending on which audience who reads it, the persuasiveness varies.

  1. Daeha’s ethos promoted him to be a little psychotic, as he has the ability to shoot someone at a whim. This may prove to be detrimental to his argument has some viewers may dismiss him to be ‘crazy’ and ‘violent.’ However, personally, I understand how it feels to be pushed to the limit, where you would literally want to ‘murder’ that person. Therefore, again, his effectiveness really depends on his audience. Those who has experience similar feelings would associate with his views. Others however, would dismiss his arguments as ‘illogically insane.’

  2. Alternative explanations:
    1. The social priorities of high school are to blame. Because they allow popular cliques to do what they want and get away with it.
    2. Because of this, the ‘local celebrities’ abuse this privilege, and ‘pick on unpopular kids.’ These create deep emotional wounds which may lead to emotional instability and thus crazy stunts.

To refute other alternative causal arguments, by using reason and logic. He argues that not all parents can supervise their children 24 hours a day, to make sure that they are not doing harmful acts.

He also utilises emotional appeals by stating that ‘schools refuse to accept any accountability and point to parents instead.’ This may allow the audience to view schools to be irresponsible in any form of action, thus decreasing the credibility of the schools’ claims.

Daeha’s argument is a valuable contribution to the controversy. The reason is because various factors contribute to emotional stability of a person. Bullying and emotional abuse is a high chance factor that might cause mental breakdowns amongst students, especially those in highschool. This opinion would also help those who are looking for retribution to realise the other side of the story. Those who are adamant in believing that the victims had no blame may want to reconsider their stance and help improve schooling systems. His cry out would help advocate for better schooling priorities which would be beneficial to all students.

4. His first kairotic moment was when he included his analogy of his own experiences. This moment, allowed him to explain his claim that school officials ignore the cruelty and corrupt highschool. By placing this kairotic moment here, he was able to conjure up his anger and frustration at the injustices in school. However, the impact of this kairos was negative to the reader. The reason being is that, the reader may label him as cruel and corrupt as well for getting into several fights and that he ‘would’ve blown every single one of them away and not cared’ (if he had a gun).