2007 Student Research Conference:
20th Annual Student Research Conference

Language & Literature

The Preacher Who Doesn't Believe in God
Amy N. Deis* and Alan J. Reininger
Dr. Alanna Preussner, Faculty Mentor

Usually rhetoricians analyze speeches or other methods of communication to see how the approaches and methods worked or didn't work. However, my approach is slightly different because I will be doing a rhetorical analysis of the novel, "Elmer Gantry," by Sinclair Lewis. Elmer is a preacher who does not believe in God, and he preaches because it gives him power over his followers. I will be comparing and contrasting Elmer's sermons to the sermons of tent preacher Sharon Falconer to see how more or less successful he is than her. For my presentation, my main focus is Elmer's and Sharon's use of rhetorical devices to persuade their crowds. Furthermore, Elmer's motives for preaching are not pure, so I address how Elmer hides his false motives from his parishioners. My reason for this analysis is to show how Elmer can be a successful preacher.

Keywords: Rhetorical analysis, literature, preacher


Presentation Type: Oral Paper

Session: 26-2
Location: VH 1428
Time: 10:00 am

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