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The Psychology of Rhetorical Images

In “The Psychology of Rhetorical Images,” Charles Hill uses comparison to describe the differences between several types of rhetorical devices related to imagery. On page 37, for example, Hill describes the difference between persuading and transforming people. As Hill describes, advertisers aim to transform people, not persuade them. While these seems counterintuitive, Hill’s explanation makes sense, saying that persuading people implies the need to stop and think about the situation and then make an educated decision. In advertising, however, the goal is to transform people in that they automatically associate the product in the ad they are watching with a positive reaction that automatically makes them want to buy the product. It doesn’t give them time to think about the product or why they want it, it just makes them automatically want to buy it. Hill makes a great comparison between these two points, explaining to the reader why one is preferable to “professional persuaders” over the other, even though they may seem similar or counterintuitive at first glance.

 

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