- Visual rhetoric is defined in the book, Rhetorical Visions by W.S. Hesford and B.J. Brueggemann, as how images persuade and argue and includes any form of persuasive communication whether it be emotional or intellectual, individual or communal (4,2). Whether true, false or somewhere in between, rhetoric always conveys something and should have a particular aim (2).
This text clearly does meet the goal of persuasive argument. It has a number of illustrations and uses text and definitions to convey certain knowledge and perspective. Its analysis of certain cultural beliefs influencing our interpretation of pictures, whether the young man stopping tanks in Beijing, Japanese-descent women making a flag in a U.S. internment camp or the pictures of New York and its people on September 11 and the days that followed, the images conveyed very powerful messages. The interpretation, and consequently argument, had to do with time and culture. American and Chinese governments viewed the tank photo very differently, and our interpretation of the photos of the women in the internment camp would likely be different from our grandparents or great-grandparents.