The final essay needs to be 10-20 pages in length (not including works cited page).
Your essay should seek to utilize 1 or 2 central theoriststhis will represent your methodology or theoretical framework. This framework serves as the tool or lens through which you will view the object of your analysis. Theoretical lenses help us stay focused by giving us parameters.
In order to critique, extend, or augment these theories you should select a clear and significant case-studyan artifact/eventupon which you can demonstrate the significance and/or limitations of the theory you choose to analyze.
To strengthen your argument, you should engage with other theorists, either from the class readings, or from your own research. This is to say, a successful essay will exhibit substantial, focused research. There is no specific number of sources required; rather, you select and use the number that allows you to present the most cogent and effective argument.
Finally, your essay will need to make the case that the ideas you explore are important both to the study of rhetoric and to the human project in some way. That is to say, if you choose to discuss a rhetorical event with which few are familiar then please explain to the reader why it is significant, or how it might point us to other issues that many feel are significant.
I have included three essays from central theorists to use to provide a theoretical framework to the essay. If these particular essays are not enough or do not work well together, I can provide more. I have several dozens more to choose from, but found these the most helpful.