Book Covers as an Example of Visual Rhetorical Analysis

shared by mrobbins on December 4, 2017

Activity Summary:

This lesson is a scaffolded approach to teaching students how to deconstruct visual arguments by analyzing various book covers. Students will practice individually, as a group, and then as presenters to the class.


  • Assign students a number 1-6 (15 min):
    • Instruct students to open the visual corresponding to their number using the link to a GoogleDoc prepared by instructor beforehand.
    • Individually, students breakdown the visual using the oral questions from before that are now projected on Powerpoint:
      • What are the visual components of the book cover?
      • What argument is being conveyed?
      • Identify ethos, pathos, and/or logos.
      • Discuss the argument’s effectiveness and/or ineffectiveness with reasons.
    • Students join their groups and discuss what they discovered.
  • The groups will come to the front of the room to present their book covers to the class, describing the argument being made, and discussing its effectiveness/ineffectiveness with reasons (15 min)