Ishmael Reed’s America The Multinational Society Paper
Shame Reed, discusses how many people In modern American society believe that America Is a monoculture, despite Its long history as a melting pot of diverse cultures. He successfully uses varying appeals to ethos, pathos, and logos to convince the audience of his Ideas and to persuade them that, indeed, America is more than just a descendent of European, or “Western” ideals and warns of the dangers of believing otherwise.
He does this by providing specific anecdotes, like the story about diversity at a fair in Detroit, and by quoting owned scholars like Robert Thompson, a Yale professor, and even quoting racially charged bathroom graffiti. Reed establishes his credibility and builds his ethos in a few ways. Before the essay even begins, there is a half-page artist biography that includes many of Reed’s previous works and background information about the author. This helps establish his credibility especially on cultural phenomena, based on his previous works.
The fact that this essay Is published In a college textbook as material to be studied also helps validate his credibility as an author. Throughout the essay, Reed continues to build his ethos by speaking about a Yale professor Glenn a speech at The university of Wisconsin. Yale Is a prestigious university, so having a professor from there who agrees with his viewpoint helps build even more credibility in his argument. The Yale professor refers to America as a “cultural bouillabaisse” which supports Reed’s view that America is a melting pot of cultures (64). Reed appeals to pathos, or emotion, throughout the essay.
One example of this is when Reed quotes a famous novelist saying “Western civilization was the greatest achievement of mankind,” and then directly compares that to the bathroom graffiti including ‘White Power,” “Naggers and Spic’s Suck,” and even “Hitler was a prophet. ” The author uses emotionally charged terms and events to equate the idea of “Western civilization” to some of the worst events In human history (65). By directly comparing the opposing viewpoint to Hitter’s views or the murder and lynching of thousands of Afro-Americans, he forms a strong negative emotional connection with is opposition’s views.
In the essay, Reed also uses logic, or logos, to persuade the viewer of his argument by using well known examples in history and today of cross-cultural influence. For example, Beethoven, a famous German composer, used entire sections of Turkish marches. He mentions both French painters and cubists and how theft been influenced by foreign cultures. He even mentions a common phenomenon that many people have experienced in recent years: the bilingual recorded instructions at an airport in Texas.
These examples all show how foreign cultures influence all aspects of “Western civilization” from music to art to travel. Reed successfully uses the three appeals of ethos, pathos, and logos to convince the audience that the US Is more than Just a single culture, but Is a diverse group of cultures living together. He encourages the audience to embrace cultural differences and use them to make our country a cultural leader and to move away from the type of thinking that led to genocide and racial lunette so Tanat we can Decode a cultural nave Tort people AT all Docudramas.