Reading Response #5 Lilly Moorefield

While reading “The Psychology of Rhetorical Images”, I was able to relate to the emotions and assertions as an audience member that most of the researchers were discussing. The article discusses the importance of vividness and presence in order to persuade an audience members thoughts and emotions of a specific element. Professional persuaders, such as a marketing expert or a politician, must focus on an individual variable in order to strengthen the influence it has. Charles Hill explains that there is an aspect of fear that an element may be forgotten and lost in the viewers mind, one that may have been the goal to influence the audience. To avoid this potential issue, it is important for persuaders┬áto prompt the audience to turn their attention only toward a limited amount of variables. Hill also confirms the fact that viewers will already have particular viewpoints and beliefs that they may bring to contradict or argue against a particular emotion they feel when faced with an image. This is when presence is a big part of the extent to which an object will have great influence on the viewer. An example mentioned in the article that we also discussed in class was an image of a starving child versus a statistical measure about how many children are dying from starvation. Providing us with an image brings much more emotion and proves that the fact is true. Vivid description and creating mental pictures is also mentioned in the article as another essential way to bring about relevance in the audience. Any way to enhance the emotion the viewer feels is essential to empowering them on the subject. This article is relevant to the course in the way which it explains deeper how specific media is broken down and analyzed within our brain. The psychological elements of how marketers and persuaders bring about emotions within their media is essential knowledge we should know as we study media as a whole.