Into Thin Air

An In Depth Rhetorical Analysis of Into Thin Air by Jon Krakauer 11th Grade

In Jon Krakauer's personal account of the 1996 Mt. Everest Disaster called “Into Thin Air”, Krakauer expresses his disbelief for the fatal accident through various shifts in tone from somber to solemn, or even a journalistic tone. Krakauer places the blame of the accident on the inexperience and conceit of his fellow climbers and guides. Krakauer also expresses his indignation that the commercialization of mountaineering, especially on Mt. Everest, has led to the deaths of many inexperienced climbers. Throughout his story, Krakauer attempts to convince the reader of these opinions through the use of various rhetorical strategies such as foreshadowing, allusions to personal anecdotes of other individuals who were on the mountain at that time, analogies that work to express the imagery of the scene on Everest, appeals to Krakauer's ethics, exaggeration of certain elements to express his personal feeling of an occurrence, and simile and metaphors of actions and scenery in order to express an image to the reader or to get a feeling across to the reader. Such elements are only some of the various types of strategies Krakauer employs to show his true feeling of the occurrences in 1996 on Mt. Everest.

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