12 Rhetorical Analysis Essay Topics For College Students


You just learned you have to write a rhetorical analysis paper. Now, you are asking the question of what is a rhetorical analysis essay. It is a paper written based on in-depth knowledge of a movie, television show, speech, book, or another form of informative content. The idea is to study the purpose or main message created for the audience. Here are tips and ideas to consider when seeking your topic.

  • How to Choose a Topic
  • There are many subjects to consider when seeking a good rhetorical analysis idea. You can find examples of essay content written by professional writers and other academic students. Such content instantly offers ideas on what to write. Think about a good book you read that left a lasting impression. Why would you recommend others to read it? Did you listen to a speech given by someone you admire? What about a television documentary about a person or disease you thought was well presented? Choose something interesting to write about you feel you can defend and explain well with supporting evidence.

  • 12 Writing Ideas
  • Your assignment should highlight an argument or opinion based on communicative works to determine if the overall message of the content was received successfully by the intended audience. Here is a list of potential rhetorical analysis topics for essay content to consider for brainstorming or further research.

    1. September 11, 2001 terror attack being addressed by George Bush.
    2. Analyzing “I Have a Dream” speech by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
    3. Office Resignation being addressed by Richard Nixon.
    4. A favorite poem written by William Shakespeare.
    5. An inaugural speech given during the inauguration of Barack Obama.
    6. Analyzing a short story written by Edgar Allan Poe.
    7. A speech given by a Nobel Peace Prize winner.
    8. A speech given at a commencement ceremony.
    9. A thought-provoking church sermon presented by a respectable minister or spiritual leader.
    10. Analyze a critically acclaimed movie or motion picture.
    11. An advertisement or commercial seen on social media by millions of viewers.
    12. A popular blog article (on a subject of your choice) that has many people talking.
  • How Do You Know You Have a Good Topic?
  • After reviewing over potential rhetorical analysis essay topics and settling for the idea of the most interest, how do you know it will help you write a good paper? Think about the remaining steps part of the writing process. You should be able to complete them with no problems as long as you can collect enough information to prove your main idea or thesis statement. If you have problems obtaining data, rework your thesis statement to make your argument or opinion more clear.