Strictly interpreted, “rebuttal” refers to an try to disapprove, contradict, or argue to overcome an opposing reasoning or proof, through introducing another reasoning and evidence to spoil the impact of the preceding one. Rebuttal is a literary technique wherein a speaker or creator uses argument, and offers reasoning or proof meant to undermine or weaken the claim of an opponent.
Features of Rebuttal
There are many features of an effective rebuttal. First, rebuttal states the opposing side’s position with none distortion. Secondly, the writers use quotations with accuracy and fidelity. Thirdly, this technique uses professional tone with rationality and courtesy, because it does not allow ridiculing to make factors. Finally, rebuttal is regularly constructively critical, as readers bristle if they encounter severe negativity.
Examples of Rebuttal in Literature
Example #1: The Founding Foodies: How Washington, Jefferson, and Franklin Revolutionized American Cuisine (By Dave DeWitt)
“A writer for your paper comforts himself, and the India Company, with the fancy that the Americans, should they remedy to drink no more tea, can by no means preserve that resolution, their Indian corn now not affording ‘an agreeable, or smooth digestible breakfast.’ Pray allow me, an American, inform the gentleman, who seems pretty unaware of the matter, that Indian corn, take it for all in all, is one of the most agreeable and healthful grains inside the world; that its green ears roasted are a delicacy past expression; that samp, hominy, succatash, and nokehock, made of it, are so many fascinating varieties; and that a johny, or hoe-cake, warm from the fire, is better than a Yorkshire muffin.”
Benjamin Franklin has written this succinct rebuttal in reaction to Vindex Patriae, who was a correspondent to Gazetteer and New Daily Advertiser. This correspondent had ridiculed corn.
Example #2: Fahrenheit 451 (By Ray Bradbury)
There are many instances of rebuttal in Ray Bradbury’s novel Fahrenheit 451. A very awesome example is the argument among Beatty and Montag. Beatty makes use of quotes from outstanding intellectuals and authors, which include Alexander Pope and Sir Philip Sidney. Beatty, thereby, makes an argument that books are just a source of dialogue and controversy, due to the fact we often see whatever mentioned in one e-book is contradicted in any other. This situation becomes ironic as Beatty’s task is to burn the outlawed books, and he is skillful and well knowledgeable of literary works. With it, he's also capable of debating and arguing based totally on literary knowledge.
Example #3: Editorial Rebuttal in The Washington Post (By Eugene Joseph Dionne)
Eugene Joseph Dionne, an editorial writer, provides a very good instance of rebuttal in The Washington Post. Before the 2003 Iraqi invasion, some humans were of the opinion that people who opposed this invasion have been unpatriotic, because in this manner they might oppose the American president. Dionne had rejected this suggestion, arguing that, if this changed into the case, “then Abraham Lincoln changed into an unpatriotic appeaser for opposing the Mexican War as a young congressman within the 1840s.” Dionne’s counter-argument is a entire rebuttal supposed to reveal a flaw in the original argument.
Example #4: Speech on fiftieth Anniversary Commemoration of Bloody Sunday in Selma (By President Barack Obama)
“For we had been born of change. We broke the vintage aristocracies, putting forward ourselves entitled not through bloodline, but endowed by using our Creator with positive unalienable rights. We steady our rights and responsibilities thru a system of self-government, of and with the aid of and for the human beings. That’s why we argue and fight with so much passion and conviction, due to the fact we realize our efforts matter. We recognize America is what we make of it.”
Many critics interpret this speech of President Obama as a finely veiled rebuttal or an argument for conservative critics inclusive of Rudy Giuliani, ex New York City Mayor, who claimed President Obama “doesn’t love America.” While some others trust that Obama’s verbal assault is on Congress, because it changed into not renewing the Voting Rights Act of 1965.
Function of Rebuttal
The purpose of using rebuttal is to prove any other argument as misguided and false. It is very commonplace in literature, public affairs, law, and politics, where warring parties recommend statements to negate or refute specific arguments against them. In law, rebuttal requires specific rules. The party the usage of rebuttal proof must confine it completely to the principle challenge of proof being rebutted. Whereas, in literary works and politics, rebuttals assist writers to protect their factors of view, in addition to make high quality criticisms through argumentation.
Popular Literary Devices
- Ad Hominem
- Deus Ex Machina
- Double Entendre
- Flash Forward
- Half Rhyme
- Internal Rhyme
- Line Break
- Non Sequitur
- Pathetic Fallacy
- Poetic Justice
- Point of View
- Red Herring
- Tragic Flaw