Showing Page:
1/4
Last Name 1
First and Last Name
Professor
Class
Date
Rhetorical Strategies in Emily Vallowe’s Write or Wrong Identity
Introduction
Most people grow up with an identity crisis and often exhibit multiple identities in
different contexts. Emily Vallowe wrote “Write or Wrong Identity” for a writing class at the
University of Mary Washington and shows that most people never outgrow an identity crisis.
Vallowe indulges the reader with anecdotal facts about her life, starting from kindergarten to the
present. She always thought of herself as a writer from an early age yet she is never settled in her
identity. Vallowe questions whether she is a writer because of her early teachers, God, her
parents, or herself and leaves the reader with the question answered at the end.
In the article, Vallowe explores her lifelong battle to discover her true identity. While she
has identified herself as a writer, she questions the essence of what it means to be a writer. By
comparing her abilities with others, Vallowe questions if she is “any good” as the writer. Writing
is an abstraction for her and she is always afraid it may crumble (Vallowe 76). This would mean
that she is nothing and without an identity. The thought that she started writing at the age of three
is both comforting and unsettling (Vallowe 77). The audience targeted by Vallowe is the young
aspiring writer who is battling with an identity crisis. The purpose of the article is to shed light
on the different ways one may settle on what their true identity and vocation are.
Throughout her article, Vallowe uses logos in trying to find the foundation of her identity
and to build her argument. She uses the logical progression of her early identity from
Showing Page:
2/4
Last Name 2
kindergarten due to the influence of her early teachers. Did a major event happen in Mrs.
Meadow class that made her want to become a writer? Probably the teachers in her elementary
school noticed her writing ability and nurtured it in her. Vallowe states that “…then a teacher
came and gave me a compliment, and I ran with it (Vallowe 75). Her audience is the child
trying to find an identity in elementary school but could also be the teacher of an aspiring pupil.
Teachers are encouraged to nurture the talent of children from an early age.
Perhaps her identity could also be a vocation from God. Vallowe suggests that an identity
could be tied to one’s vocation. She ponders if her writing is simply a channel for a divine being
to communicate with the world. At the same time, she questions if an identity can be that simple
and consistent. If she is simply a channel, what does it make her be? Vallowe seems to discount
her writing identity as a vocation as she argues that she skipped “some sort of journey” necessary
to discover her vocation. Her audience is the person who assumes they have a vocation to spread
God’s love through a vocation.
Vallowe also questions whether her identity crisis could have been caused by her parents.
Vallowe’s mother is shown as having noticed her writing ability from an early age of three years.
Vallowe explains that “…I would run to her and say. ‘Mommy, Mommy, write my story for me”
(Vallowe 77). Knowing that she was a writer even without affirmation from anyone is both
comforting and unsettling. Her audience is the parent of a child with an innate ability; she
encourages them to be keen to support such children.
Vallowe also interrogates herself as a writer using the parameters of passion, originality,
and pleasure. A true writer according to her definition is one who “passionately seeks originality-
someone who gets pleasure from inventing entire fictional worlds” (Vallowe 78). In other words,
she is comfortable with being a writer and not “the writer.” Her audience is the person who is
Showing Page:
3/4
Last Name 3
passionate about doing something they like; Vallowe encourages such a person to pursue what
they are passionate about.
Conclusion
Vallowe shows that most people never outgrow an identity crisis despite settling on a
chosen career. In her article, she takes the reader on a journey of self-discovery from her
childhood to the present. Trying to logically figure out what was the most important factor that
influenced her identity, Vallowe leaves the reader with that question unanswered. Vallowe writes
to a diverse audience that ranges from parents, teachers, and those who are passionate about
pursuing a dream. Vallowe shows that we all suffer from an identity crisis at some stage in life.
Showing Page:
4/4
Last Name 4
Works Cited
Vallowe, Emily. Write or Wrong Identity. University of Mary Washington, n.d.

Unformatted Attachment Preview

Last Name 1 First and Last Name Professor Class Date Rhetorical Strategies in Emily Vallowe’s Write or Wrong Identity Introduction Most people grow up with an identity crisis and often exhibit multiple identities in different contexts. Emily Vallowe wrote “Write or Wrong Identity” for a writing class at the University of Mary Washington and shows that most people never outgrow an identity crisis. Vallowe indulges the reader with anecdotal facts about her life, starting from kindergarten to the present. She always thought of herself as a writer from an early age yet she is never settled in her identity. Vallowe questions whether she is a writer because of her early teachers, God, her parents, or herself and leaves the reader with the question answered at the end. In the article, Vallowe explores her lifelong battle to discover her true identity. While she has identified herself as a writer, she questions the essence of what it means to be a writer. By comparing her abilities with others, Vallowe questions if she is “any good” as the writer. Writing is an abstraction for her and she is always afraid it may crumble (Vallowe 76). This would mean that she is nothing and without an identity. The thought that she started writing at the age of three is both comforting and unsettling (Vallowe 77). The audience targeted by Vallowe is the young aspiring writer who is battling with an identity crisis. The purpose of the article is to shed light on the different ways one may settle on what their true identity and vocation are. Throughout her article, Vallowe uses logos in trying to find the foundation of her identity and to build her argument. She uses the logical progression of her early identity from Last Name 2 kindergarten due to the influence of her early teachers. Did a major event happen in Mrs. Meadow class that made her want to become a writer? Probably the teachers in her elementary school noticed her writing ability and nurtured it in her. Vallowe states that “…then a teacher came and gave me a compliment, and I ran with it” (Vallowe 75). Her audience is the child trying to find an identity in elementary school but could also be the teacher of an aspiring pupil. Teachers are encouraged to nurture the talent of children from an early age. Perhaps her identity could also be a vocation from God. Vallowe suggests that an identity could be tied to one’s vocation. She ponders if her writing is simply a channel for a divine being to communicate with the world. At the same time, she questions if an identity can be that simple and consistent. If she is simply a channel, what does it make her be? Vallowe seems to discount her writing identity as a vocation as she argues that she skipped “some sort of journey” necessary to discover her vocation. Her audience is the person who assumes they have a vocation to spread God’s love through a vocation. Vallowe also questions whether her identity crisis could have been caused by her parents. Vallowe’s mother is shown as having noticed her writing ability from an early age of three years. Vallowe explains that “…I would run to her and say. ‘Mommy, Mommy, write my story for me” (Vallowe 77). Knowing that she was a writer even without affirmation from anyone is both comforting and unsettling. Her audience is the parent of a child with an innate ability; she encourages them to be keen to support such children. Vallowe also interrogates herself as a writer using the parameters of passion, originality, and pleasure. A true writer according to her definition is one who “passionately seeks originalitysomeone who gets pleasure from inventing entire fictional worlds” (Vallowe 78). In other words, she is comfortable with being a writer and not “the writer.” Her audience is the person who is Last Name 3 passionate about doing something they like; Vallowe encourages such a person to pursue what they are passionate about. Conclusion Vallowe shows that most people never outgrow an identity crisis despite settling on a chosen career. In her article, she takes the reader on a journey of self-discovery from her childhood to the present. Trying to logically figure out what was the most important factor that influenced her identity, Vallowe leaves the reader with that question unanswered. Vallowe writes to a diverse audience that ranges from parents, teachers, and those who are passionate about pursuing a dream. Vallowe shows that we all suffer from an identity crisis at some stage in life. Last Name 4 Works Cited Vallowe, Emily. Write or Wrong Identity. University of Mary Washington, n.d. Name: Description: ...
User generated content is uploaded by users for the purposes of learning and should be used following Studypool's honor code & terms of service.
Studypool
4.7
Trustpilot
4.5
Sitejabber
4.4