Reference: Orange workbook: “Setting up paragraph” and advanced reasoning techniques: Page 28, Richard Louv, (see also pp 75-76)
Page references: see analytical sentences, p. 23 and p. 26; see metalanguage p. 37; see paragraph plans, pp. 27-29
Step 1: identify key viewpoints (macro)
Adopting a prosaic tone, Dr Louv suggests that Australians, like Americans, are experiencing a lack of physical activity which impacts upon their emotional health and wellbeing.
Step 2: which persuasive techniques and arguments strategies are embedded in this main contention or view point? (macro)
- Comparisons between Americans and Australians: to prove a widespread trend among western lifestyles
- Appeal/values : emotional well-being (connected to physical well-being/natural connections) (cause and effect argument: link between physical and emotional connections)
- Criticisms/attacks: censures our western lifestyles and obsession with screen based-activities
Step 3: at the micro level choose 3 significant value-laden words/phrases
For depth of analysis, zoom in on key word choices with a persuasive impact : (practice our analytical sentences)
- “shared reputation for being an outdoors-oriented people”: Dr Louv deflates the stereotypical image of Australians as “outdoors” people
- “not a medical diagnosis but a metaphor”: Dr Louv’s metaphorical reference to the “nature deficit disorder” reinforces his view that disconnection from nature is increasingly becoming an emotional illness
- 1 in 4 – “have never climbed a tree”: It would be disconcerting for many parents to realise that so many “children have never climbed a tree”
Step 4: think about use of metalanguage, analytical sentences and focus on purpose
Metalanguage: comparisons, stereotypes, prosaic/pragmatic tone, comparative reference, endorses, advocates, censures, condemns, decries, disconcerting, perturbs
Adopting a prosaic tone, Dr Louv suggests that Australians, like Americans, are cutting themselves off from outdoors natural-based activities and this is impacting upon their emotional stability. He compares (juxtaposes) these shared western lifestyles to reinforce his metaphorical view of a “nature deficit disorder” that aims to deflate complacent stereotypes about a nation of “outdoors” people. In particular, he establishes a correlation between the decrease in physical health and a corresponding decrease in emotional health and well-being, which is designed to alarm all those who are anxious about an intolerable increase in “screen based activities”. It would certainly be disconcerting for many parents to realise that a large number of “children have never climbed a tree” and that many children eschew outdoor adventure for indoor, passive digital pastimes. Accordingly, Mr Louv challenges all policymakers, parents and guardians to nurture these invaluable connections that are so fundamental to our state of health.
Note the use of analytical sentences; precise adjectives to reflect the author’s views; a constant focus on purpose; logical progression from macro (views, key strategy) to micro – specific analysis of persuasive word choices.
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