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LOGOS, PATHOS, ETHOS

WHAT IS LOGOS?

Logos refers to an appeal to reason based on logic. Logical conclusions
come from assumptions and decisions derived from weighing a collection of
solid facts and statistics.
Academic arguments rely on logos.
An example of an argument that relies on logos is the argument that
smoking is harmful based on the evidence that "Cigarette smoke contains
over 4,800 chemicals, 69 of which are known to cause cancer."
Notice that the statement above uses specific numbers. Numbers are sound
and logical.
An everyday example of an appeal to logos is the argument that Lady Gaga
was more popular than Justin Bieber in 2011 because Gaga's fan pages
collected ten million more Facebook fans than Bieber's.
As a researcher, your job is to find statistics and other facts to back up your
claims.
When you do this, you are appealing to your audience with logic-or logos.

WHAT IS ETHOS?
Trustworthiness is important in research, as you well know. You must
trust your sources, and your readers must trust you.
In the example above concerning logos, you saw two examples that were
based on hard facts. However, one example comes from the American
Lung Association. The other comes from Facebook fan pages. Which of
these sources do you suppose is more credible?
Facebook fan pages can be started by anyone. Lady Gaga may have fifty
different fan pages, and each page may contain duplicate "fans." The fan
page argument is probably not very sound.
Ethos refers to the credibility of the person posing the argument or
stating the facts.
The facts provided by the American Lung Association are probably more
persuasive than those provided by fan pages, since the American Lung
Association has been around for more than 100 years.
At first glance, you might think that your own credibility is out of your
control when it comes to posing academic arguments-but that is wrong!

WHAT IS PATHOS?
Pathos refers to appealing to a person by influencing their emotions. Pathos is involved in the
strategy of convincing the audience by invoking feelings through their own imaginations.
You probably appeal through pathos when you try to convince your parents of something.
Consider this statement:
"Mom, there is clear evidence that cell phones save lives in emergency situations."
While that statement is true, the real power lies in the emotions that you will likely invoke in your
parent. What mother wouldn't envision a broken-down automobile perched by the side of a busy
highway upon hearing that statement?
Emotional appeals are extremely effective, but they can be tricky.
There may or may not be a place for pathos in your research paper. For example, you may be
writing an argument essay about the death penalty.
Ideally, your paper should contain a logical argument. You should appeal to logos by including
statics to support your view-such as data that suggests that the death penalty does/does not cut
down on crime
But you may also use pathos by interviewing someone who witnessed an execution or someone
who found closure when a criminal was executed .
Generally, however, academic papers should employ appeals to emotions pretty sparingly. A long
paper that is purely based on emotions is not considered very professional!
Even when you are writing about an emotionally-charged, controversial issue like the death
penalty, you can't write a paper that is all emotion and opinion. The teacher, in that circumstance,
will likely assign a failing grade because you haven't provided a sound (logical) argument.