Fresh Voices: Composition at Cal Poly


In Sarah Bishop’s argumentative essay, “Mandating the HPV Vaccine,” she offers the newest of debates in the long-standing discussion of teens and sex— the HPV vaccine. She chooses to approach her audience with a direct argument: “The HPV vaccine should be mandated [for] young teens everywhere.” Her use of ethos, pathos, and logos illustrates and develops her claims about the vaccine. Bishop draws support for her argument from current journal articles and web sites, and then furthers an appeal to ethos by identifying herself as a candidate for the vaccine. Describing the virus as “unknowingly common” among men and women, she also incites pathos in her reader: “[C]hildren have the right to be protected.” Appealing via logos, she constructs a path of evidence built on facts and testimony.

To set up and then support a good argument a writer should also account for opposition. Bishop identifies her opposition as “conservative families” who might be opposed to mandating the HPV Vaccine. How does she acknowledge their voices? Does she represent them fairly? Did she include all opposing voices on the issue?