In her article, Zimmerman tries to show that the problem of bisexuality remains ambiguous – there is still little understanding of the concept’s nature, even though the term is familiar to modern society. As a result, mass media, likewise, experiences difficulties in offering a multi-sided and convincing portrayal of a bisexual character. The author shows a good understanding of the subject, providing numerous relevant examples, and ensuring a logic flow of ideas. Apart from being highly informative, the article also implies a strong appeal to the public, and it is essential to admit that its argumentative basis is consistent enough to make the society reflect upon the problem under discussion.
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Zimmerman provides a strong argumentative set to convince the readers of the fact that bisexuality is poorly represented by modern television. In the meantime, it should be pointed out that the text is slightly overloaded with repetitions. Thus, one and the same idea appears in several passages in a rephrased manner. On the whole, the presented arguments are considered to be of merit as they feature logically structured ideas about the poor elucidation of bisexual personality on television and are evidenced by the relevant real-life examples. As a result, the evaluated article meets the major part of the criteria set for its assessment.
The stated judgment has been carried out upon the application of several evaluation criteria to the text analysis. Hence, the key criteria that have determined the final judgment are text coherence and a clearly formulated thesis. Some experts also point out the importance of the good evidence that is related to the core thesis of the paper and supports the ideas’ persuasiveness; this criterion was, likewise, included in the list (Newell, Bloome, and Hirvela 190). Lastly, the article was evaluated in the context of its novelty value. Otherwise stated, it was considered that a good article should offer a fresh view on the subject that has not been repeated and rephrased by other journalists.
The first reason why the article was evaluated positively is the innovative view that it offers on the problem of bisexuality and its representation on TV. It would be unfair to claim that this problem has never been elucidated in the media before. Thus, for instance, a month later, after Zimmerman’s appeal was published, a similar article appeared in “The Guardian.” However, the text did not exhibit a profundity of thought or a multi-sided approach to the problem. Instead, it simply enumerated all the bisexual characters that could be seen on television and drew a conclusion that the representation of the social group was improper (Duffy par. 6). Zimmerman uses another approach to problem analysis. Hence, her key aim resides in pointing out the irrelevance of the bisexuals’ representation rather than the lack of it. In other words, she strives to illustrate that in spite of the fact that producers make attempts to depict bisexual characters, poor knowledge of this community prevents them from generating depicting heroes and results in translating ungrounded stereotypes and images to the audience (Zimmerman par. 8).
The novelty of Zimmerman’s idea resides in the fact that the author shows the reasons and roots for the phenomenon she discusses. In other words, the distinguishing trait of this article is its profound examination of the problem drivers and a complex vision of the associated outcomes. From this perspective, the writer is a true innovator as she offers a detailed review of bisexuals and their role in modern television.
Another reason why the articles’ argumentation is considered to be strong is a consistent evidence base that the author provides. Thus, every argument is supported by a real-life example. Most importantly, the examples are described in detail. Thus, for instance, while speculating on the role of bisexuals in the television and the extent of their representation, Zimmerman not just points out the films and shows that portray this social group but analyzes the way they do it. This quality approach, opposite to the quantitative method, helps the audience to acquire a better understanding of the problem. Additionally, the abundance of the relevant examples signifies the author’s complex approach to the problem investigation. It is evident that the article composition was preceded by a long process of data collection and analysis. Therefore, it is not the evidence itself that makes the article particularly convincing but its quality – the way the evidence is described and divided into relevant implications.
Additionally, the provided evidence base is very diverse. Otherwise stated, the media sector is not the only source of Zimmerman’s examples. The author refers to life-based stories and common prejudices to translate her message. The extent of evidence description is, likewise, different throughout the text. Thus, some examples are analyzed in detail to help the readers to review the mechanism of television’s distorting the image of bisexuals. For instance, the character of Frank Underwood from the “House of Card” series, as well as that of Oberyn Martell from the popular “Game of Thrones,” are elucidated especially explicitly as they compose the major support for the advanced thesis. Other examples, in their turn, are presented in the form of short references to clarify the argument.
The logical structure is another benefit that explains the positive evaluation of the article. Thus, it has a multi-level structure that lets the ideas develop gradually and linearly. Therefore, the author begins by pointing out the insufficient representation of bisexuals on television. Then, she continues to narrow down the point to the insufficient representation of bisexual men. As long as all the relevant evidence is provided, the author passes to another stage –she illustrates that the bisexuals’ portraying is not only insufficient but also perverted. Therefore, the flow of ideas follows a particular pattern instead of a random enumeration of the associated examples. Further on, Zimmerman shows how the incomplete and falsified image of a social group might have a negative impact on society developing the feelings of resistance and intolerance in the latter. The last lines of the article focus on the social responsibility of the media that it does not fulfill. This brief description of the article logic pattern shows the author’s skillful text structuring.
A coherent structure is particularly important as Zimmerman’s article is rather long so that there is always a risk of straying from the core subject and losing the train of thought. Meanwhile, the author managed to speak straight to the point regardless of the subject’s complex nature. As a result, the readers’ vision of the problem keeps forming as they pass from paragraph to paragraph and this process is not finished until the very last paragraph.
On the other hand, the stated judgment might be argued as there is currently no consensus regarding the discussed problem in the society. Thus, for instance, a year before the article appeared, “The Atlantic” offered its vision of the problem of the bisexuals’ presence on television. The focus of the article was similar to that translated by Zimmerman; meanwhile, it emphasized the positive view on the problem. Thus, the author mainly pointed out the growing frequency of bisexuals’ appearance on television that, according to her, signified the positive social change (Quinlan par. 16).
This point of view can be argued by comparing the value of qualitative and quantitative portrayals of bisexuals on television. Hence, “It Ain’t Easy Being Bisexual on TV” illustrates this difference by providing numerous examples of producers’ exploiting the image of a bisexual in such a manner that it translates a totally wrongful vision of this person to the society making it adopt the ungrounded prejudices about bisexuals.
Another reason why this point of view cannot be accepted is that it neglects the key aim of ensuring an equal representation of all social groups on television. It is proposed that the key target is to get the people acquainted with the diversities present in the modern world and develop their tolerance towards them. Thus, “It Ain’t Easy Being Bisexual on TV” evidences the importance of television’s reflecting the reality as it is, rather than narrowing it down to a set of common stereotypes.
It might be concluded that Zimmerman’s article is a rational and convincing work that has a strong social implication. The text is valuable not only from the stylistic standpoint but from the message it translates to the public. As a result, “It Ain’t Easy Being Bisexual on TV” can be evaluated positively, as it meets all the essential criteria such as strong thesis, ideas’ coherence, and relevant evidence.
Duffy, Owen. Popular culture is still afraid of bisexuality, 2014. Web.
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Newell, George, David Bloome, and Alan Hirvela. Teaching and Learning Argumentative Writing in High School English Language Arts Classrooms, London: Routledge, 2015. Print.
Quinlan, Casey. Bisexuality on TV: It’s Getting Better, 2013. Web.
Zimmerman, Amy. It Ain’t Easy Being Bisexual on TV, 2014. Web.