High school, the best times of our lives. But in every situation others don’t experience it as the time of their lives. In specific, the so called, “Loser, Nerds, Outcasts. ” Sometimes the perception that most high school movies convey for this certain group are the reality. In this article “High school confidential: Notes on teen movies” by David Denby, He describes the functions of an everyday American high school. David Denby uses very effective language and rhetoric to provide the minds of the opposing side.
A sample of the rhetoric skills he uses is stereotypes, ethos, and pathos. The most disliked teenager that runs the halls is a popular blonde-…. She’s tall and slender, with a waist as supple as a willow… slatternly tongue that devastates other kids with such insults…. She has two or three friends exactly like her, and together they dominate their realm. This is the typical popular girl as we in-vision partly because of the movies, but the movies must have gotten the foundation for such a character from a real life all American girl.
And although not all stereotypes are true, this one seems to have quite a lot of truth to it. As he goes on into his theories he describes several “everyday American teenagers” from the bitchy popular girl to the gothic kids. But he ends up revealing this character in such a way as the,” male counterpart”. As in movies the typical football player is represented as muscular but dumb, with a face like a of a male model/ pretty boy and only two ways of speaking- in a conspiratorial whisper, to a friend; or in a drill sergeants sudden bellow.
Not only does he get into the descriptions of the girls, but the typical jock. If one was too compare and contrast the people in their high school to the ones that Denby is speaking of, they will be able to pin point them perfectly. Denby uses many examples of stereotypes, but also presents ethos. He takes many movies and compares the characters from both views, so in a way he is strengthing his claim with the same repetitive information, but with his own views and opinions.
This is very effective because that is the purpose of an argument, to repeat your claim in way that a reader won’t find too repetitive. He has firsthand experience the life inside of high school, so he must have seen these type of characters when he was in high school. So what reasons wouldn’t give us the mind set of trusting someone that’s experienced the high school life? This is why his ethos is so important in opposing the other side. He also uses pathos very well through the columbine shooting. The enemy is other teens and the social system that they impose on one another. ” The teens that impose such a system are the ones that were named in this essay. And this system is imposed through insults. But one can only take so much, and that is what happened in the Columbine shooting. These “gothic” kids were under attack by the popular group, and pushed them to the edge to where they believe that doing such cruel acts could somehow with the satisfaction of revenge.
It is horrifying to realize that teens are so heartless, but that is what has happened. This is not only emotionally effective to the reader, but also logically. Because if you think about it, Denby imposes his statement that there is the popular bitch, the jock, and says that they are pushing a social system. So this just reassures the fact that what Denby describes is true and happens every day with the halls of high school without outsiders knowing.