Memory matter

Commentary criticizing political figures is common; however, articles which justify their actions with proof are rare. The article of the New York Times “Why Our Memory Fails Us ,” written by Christopher F. Chabris and Daniel J. Simons explains the statement given by Neil deGrasse Tyson as “memory failure.” In such statement Tyson criticizes a quote he remembered Bush saying during 9/11, but it was false. GOOD.

            This article is written in first person plural with a formal tone. NOT AN ARGUMENT Chabris and Simons start immediately with the commentary by explaining who Tyson is and what he said. Then they use hyperlinks as citation and to prove their credibility. Then to later introduce the idea of memory malfunction. NO SUBJECT. To explain their point and prove their case, they used examples that helped employ the element of persuasion of logic (Logos). Such as a research they participated, psychology cognitive study, The National Academy of Science statements and also, specific and popular figures such as Oprah Winfrey’s Book, statements from Hillary Clinton and even Bush. They also made connections with previous criminal recollection methods and research that proves their point. They additionally established  a relationship with the audience (Ethos) with the repetition of pronouns as “our”, “we”,  also they later refer to common TV shows and games such as the telephone to make it easier for the reader to understand.They culminate the article by saying Tyson accepted he made a mistake from his memory. Then they introduce the main idea which is: “ordinary memory failures say nothing about a person’s honesty or competence.” Then they explain that since we all go through the same situation we should not criticize, let the person accept the error and move on. Which closes the article with an emotive connotation (Pathos) by reflecting on fairness, hoping to persuade the readers to have empathy and agree that memory could fail. At the end of the article the authors mentioned their profession which both are professors of psychology at universities that allows them to persuade the readers about the credibility (Ethos). Based on the examples mentioned from the article, the authors made use of the three elements of persuasion, but they mostly relied on credibility and logic.

          After reading the article, I read the comment section and I noticed some comments were not allusive to the information and were uninformed, as is explained by Virginia Heffernan in her article from the New York Times “Comment is King.”However, that doesn’t mean they are unnecessary, they are important to understand certain parts of the article, for active participation of the readers and to learn about opposing views about the same.  Platforms such as the New York Times, in order to improve the way they inform readers, divided the comments in three sections. The NYT Picks are recommended by the readers but selected by NYT, they contribute to the information in the article by relying on logic; giving a different perspective to it, using personal experience, research and studies and even to criticize the article in an educated manner. CHECK THE PUNCTUATION IN THIS SENTENCE; YOU’RE USING IT INCORRECTLY From the comments I read, I found that most agree with the article; therefore, it is a way for the NYT to gain reader’s approval because other people like them agree with it, they should do so. The readers pick are selected by readers; from the comments some were misinformed and seemed to have likes because people agree with what they said or were funny, disregarding the logic behind them; therefore, mostly appealing to their emotion and their passion.


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