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).


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