"On natural death" By Lewis Thomas.

Topics: Rhetoric, Life, Death Pages: 3 (830 words) Published: May 6, 2003
The Journey to Death

From the moment all life forms are born, a journey is begun to the mysterious quarters of the unknown and the unexplained. It is a journey to the one place all beings are not sure of and fear the most. Whether or not it comes from old age, death is a part of the natural cycle of life. In the essay "On Natural Death" by Lewis Thomas, death is the spectacle of human and animal existence. He explores the world of death using rhetorical writing style to effectively support his idea of death. By using parallel sentences and persuasive techniques such as logos, pathos, and ethos, Thomas is able to alter the perception of the creeping demon into an exotic experience.

Thomas' use of parallel sentences creates his mood about death and why it is Nature's job to help us through it. He points out in his essay that reading books on death causes a person to wonder how they will react when they encounter death. He seeks to assure the reader by saying that "if you know not how to die, never trouble yourself; Nature will in a moment...instruct you; she will ...do the business for you..." (275). The idea of the unknown creeps in the back of human thought because people are not sure how they will handle it; ergo they read books to prepare them for the unexpected arrival of death. With the use of parallel sentence structure, he emphasizes to the reader that they will be taken care of if they are faced with the grim situation by repeating the word "you". This technique and word usage engraves the concept of death in the mind and makes the audience follow through the sentence confident that Nature will be there to assist them in the process.

The road to death is a dreaded destination man and animal wish not to face alone. Through Thomas' elucidation, nature is the mother that guides the individual and makes the journey a peaceful one. He creates his effective essay by using persuasive techniques such as pathos. Thomas illustrates that nature takes away...
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