Critical Evaluation: Michael Moore’s “Idiot Nation”

1026 words - 4 pages

If it was not apparent enough that America’s education system is failing, Michael Moore’s “Idiot Nation” openly explains to us about the truth. America, for being the richest country, is behind in the educational standpoint. America needs to rethink their standards when it comes to education. America is more focused on corporate earning than educating our youth. The author of “Idiot Nation” makes the reader think about how America is viewed in the world. The purpose of Michael Moore’s essay is to point out what is wrong with this nation and also give the reader the motivation to actually do something about the situation at hand. Moore is trying to make readers aware of where we send our children. The author is trying to shock readers with the facts to do something to improve the American education system.
Moore uses a great deal of data and logos strategies to alarm the reader. Michael Moore’s overall essay is based on his pathos arguments. He is highly irritated and in disbelief of the education system. The author uses one of the most common and easy to read strategy. First, he makes a logo standpoint and then supports his argument with pathos. He does this so that the reader is engaged and taken aback by his logo argument then is in agreement with his pathos argument that follows.
For example, on page 134, he states that a group of 556 seniors at fifty five prestigious American universities were given a multiple choice test. 40 percent of these students did not know when the Civil War took place. Then the author states his concern: why politicians like senators Joe Lieberman of Connecticut and Herbert Kohl of Wisconsin want to go after MTV when they are the ones responsible for the massive failure of American education (pg 134). This is an effective method of attacking the government because he first states an appalling fact and then says that the government wants to attack MTV instead of admitting the blame and fixing the problem.
Logos examples:
1. 70 percent of those who graduate from Americas colleges are not required to learn a foreign language. Pg 136
2. In 1999, one-quarter of U. S. public schools reported that the condition of at least one of their buildings was inadequate. Pg 140
3. In 1997, the entire Washington DC school system had to delay the start of school for three weeks because nearly one-third of the schools were found to be unsafe. Pg 140
4. This 1999 account by an Education Week reported about the Library at a Philadelphia elementary school could apply to any number of similarly neglected schools. Pg 142
5. According to the numbers collected by the Center for the Analysis of Commercialism in Education, their selfless charity has seen a tremendous boom since 1990. pg 143
6. Education Market Resource of Kansas reports that children respond openly and easily to questions and stimuli in the classroom setting pg 145
-Pathos examples:
1. So if you live in a country where forty four million can’t read and perhaps...

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