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Writing to persuade - letter

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210 Madeup Road, Blackpool, Lancashire, . 5th June 2008 16, Something Street, Fleetwood, Lancashire, . Dear Gordon Marsden, One hundred thousand people every day die of old age, what is harsh, painful and ultimately a pointless death. As a co-founder of the SENS project (Strategies for Engineered Negligible Senescence) which is a detailed plan for curing human ageing, I am writing to you to urge you to become a fan of this life saving research, and to ask you to make a donation towards this research as it's not yet funded for by the government. The main researcher in the development to cure ageing is Dr. ...read more.


There are many treatments already on the market that help prolong longevity such as vaccines and just general medicines for illnesses, so there is absolutely no reason why a pacific treatment to cure old age should be discounted. There should be the same if in fact not more funding and development for this research as there was for any other treatment currently on the market, as this is literally treatment that can prolong life into hundreds if not thousands of years, unlike any other treatment which has merely added the odd few years onto your life expectancy. Most people already participate in acts to help increase their longevity such as going to the gym, eating healthily and going for medical check ups. ...read more.


Other religious people might say were going against god's will by ending something that he created, but if he is real he gave us our intelligence to be able to create cure's and find new things out for ourselves. If you are still not confident about the importance of this research just remember all the suffering that's currently occurring because of this dreaded disease, and all the lives that will be saved if the research succeeds. So remember this is just another disease like any other, but is one that's often disregarded and just seen as the one inevitable ending that will happen to us all that every single person dreads. Thank you for taking the time to read this letter. Yours sincerely, Chris Heaton ...read more.

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Response to the question

This is a borderline-humorous letter responding to a Writing to Persuade task. It nicely approaches the subject of a fictional medical procedure aiming to halt ageing and sells the treatment well. Although I would argue the description of what would ...

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Response to the question

This is a borderline-humorous letter responding to a Writing to Persuade task. It nicely approaches the subject of a fictional medical procedure aiming to halt ageing and sells the treatment well. Although I would argue the description of what would happen to the recipient without the procedure is a little dismaying, as the letter states the procedure will be operational in 25 years time and then goes on to explain how "old age would stop you living your last few years in misery with the inability to take care of yourself, the pains to your body that old age brings, and the deaths of loved ones that's once again due to this deadly disease." This seems like a mightily insensitive remark to make considering the demographic of the procedure won't actually be around to sample the goods if the procedure becomes correctly funded. So I would advise the candidate to be a little more sensitive in convincing recipients of the letter that alternatives to this treatment are not as beneficial.

Level of analysis

The Level of Persuasion shown here is fair, but a lot of it is poorly augmented and doesn't feel particularly snappy, and so the procedure isn't sold well. I will say that the counter-argument for the very valid argument about potential over-population as a result of making people live longer is very poor and should such a program go into practise it would be highly unethical and in some cultures immoral to be waiting on the deaths of a stranger in order to 'have permission' to have a baby.

The letter features no linguistic rhetoric devices - even the most basic ones are absent, such as rhetorical questions, triples, hyperbole. Second Person Address appears to be the only real linguistic rhetoric feature that's been used and as a result the letter doesn't feel very persuasive at all. I recommend incorporating more of these features into the letter, with perhaps a reconsideration of the counter-arguments, so that they appear more feasible and professionally thought-through.

Quality of writing

The Quality of Written Communication here is generally poor. Though no mistakes compromise the clarity of the essay, there are indications the candidate does not possess a real grasp on the appropriate use of apostrophes "cure's" or how to differentiate between homonyms "were" instead of "we're". These issues need to be address as they give the impression of carelessness to read and re-read the essay in order to rectify these simple errors. They're simple enough to make but even simpler to iron out and this should be done before closing the exam booklet/handing in the final copy of a piece of coursework.

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Reviewed by sydneyhopcroft 25/08/2012

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