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Ethos, Pathos

In: English and Literature

Submitted By kmsull21
Words 1510
Pages 7
Everything is Better in The Bahamas
People are constantly being exposed to advertisements. I think people are exposed to them so much in today’s society, that sometimes they do not even recognize an ad to be an ad anymore. Ads have gotten a bit excessive. I hate when the same commercial comes on promoting food or merchandise and the narrating voice is so obnoxious, it forces me to change the channel. I never thought about it until now, but if I’m changing the channel the advertisements shown are obviously not successful. Ads can be seen on billboards, in stores, on TV and on food/beverage products. For example, the water bottle sitting right in front of me says “the ultimate hydration” and explains how the specific water company is good and can make a difference in hydrating. The Bahamas ad I chose depicts a man on top of a billboard, trying to slingshot himself to the Bahamas. Looks real safe, doesn’t it? However, when people see this billboard, I don’t think the safety of the man comes to mind. Instead, persuasion and the pursuit of happiness come into focus.
The purpose of the ad is that everything is better in the Bahamas. This is evident as the billboard states: “It’s better in the Bahamas.” Exactly what is better though? I’m not sure and neither are the other viewers but one can assume life in general is better. One would be able to relax, experience tropical drinks and foods, swim in the breathtaking clear blue water as shown on the billboard and just absorb the sun’s rays. There are both literal and figurative meanings that are applied in the ad. Many people who know about the Bahamas are familiar with its history and have an understanding that a trip there will have impacting memories in one’s head forever. All of these factors contribute to the overall purpose of the ad.
The purpose of the ad is as clear as the crystal blue water in the background of the billboard. It is clearly presenting the fact that everything is better in the Bahamas. It is also suggesting the Bahamas are close to the people who are viewing the Bahamas billboard. Since the islands seem like they are close, it should make for a short plane ride, which means travel plans will be less stressful. The emphasis on short traveling is evident through two things. First, the ad says that it is “just 50 miles away.” The just part of the statement makes the Bahamas seem a lot closer than they really are. The billboard picture of the water offers the main idea of a stress-free and stunning environment.
Another purpose of the ad is that it is always going to be standing there and people are always going to be passing it. Some people may pass it a couple times a day when they are driving around. A rhetoric question can be raised when one passes the Bahamas billboard so many times which is: how many times must I pass this billboard, before I make plans to go to the Bahamas? This rhetoric question shows purpose because the more people who pass the billboard, the more likely it is that people are going to think about taking a trip there. The last purpose of the ad is simply and obviously the representation that the Bahamas are amazing islands that are worth taking a trip to. There are responses that are stimulated from the billboard, which include, the opening of eyes, faster heart beats and goose bumps causing a shiver down one’s spine. The implied meanings of the Bahamas billboard create responses that contribute to the desire of people wanting to make a trip there.
There are many meanings that are implied in the billboard such as the literal and figurative meanings. Ethos, pathos and logos offer persuasion in the billboard as well. A literal meaning is the primary or strict definition of a word. On the other hand, a figurative meaning involves a figure of speech and is usually metamorphic. The literal meaning of the billboard is that the Bahamas are legitimately 50 miles away. This means no matter who measures or as long as you are at the exact location of the billboard, the Bahamas will always be 50 miles away from that point. The figurative meaning is that the Bahamas are not located where the billboard is. In this case, the blue water is not actually where people are seeing it up in the sky on a board. Another type of figurative language used is a hyperbole because there is immediate overemphasis stated on the billboard. The overemphasis is: “everything is better.”
Pathos persuades people by the emotions intended by that narrator, or in this case, an artist too. The sight of the billboard invokes people’s emotions so that they want to go. Maybe it makes people want to go so badly; they change plans or find a way to go as soon as they can. Ethos and logos are also used, because they persuade people by the credibility and the logic of the billboard. It is credible because there are advertisements everywhere promoting trips to the Bahamas, which means there must be something good about going. Logically, it makes sense to go to the Bahamas if you have free time and want to experience the betterment of life the ad is offering. The man getting ready to slingshot himself is evidence of the implied meanings and persuasion working. Because of the purpose and implied meanings of the Bahamas ad, people will most likely want to go home to research about the islands.
After passing the billboard, the advertisers hope is that an individual will go home to research the Bahamas if he/she is truly interested. The billboard targets both genders and probably most ethnicities or races too. However, it may draw attention to all people, but that does not mean that all people can afford to take the trip. One has the ability to go online, type in “Bahamas” and find some quick facts that will support the billboard’s ad in persuading a person to go. I typed “Bahamas” into Google, and found a lot of information. The official Bahamas’ website was at the top of the page and there were many other websites displayed on the page below. Other websites provided information on the weather, exploring the different islands of the Bahamas, and how to find cheap airfares. These websites alone are useful, because they supply helpful and factual information for the person who is researching. In spite of this, the official Bahamas website combines every aspect of the other web pages and more into just one website, which allows for optimum efficiency. I noticed the website was well organized and compared to the billboard in many ways. The blue water seen on the billboard is also pictured in different areas of the website, encouraging people to want to share an experience with the Bahamas by swimming in that blue water. In both the research I did, and from looking at the billboard, the Bahamas are portrayed in similar ways. They both suggest the Bahamas are better by giving you freedom to do anything/everything, or to kick back and do nothing at all. After completing more research, I found that the Bahamas is a welcoming place for not only adults, but kids and families too. Children can go off to participate in a variety of activities offered, like snorkeling. I also found there are several different islands that are considered part of the Bahamas and each is unique in its own way. For instance, Nassau has a giant water park that is available to all ages. This particular island has packages that families can invest in, which makes trips more affordable. The fact that the Bahamas offers fun activities and is a great place for a family vacation adds all the more reason to go. Overall, this assignment has made me realize the Bahamas just make everything better, or at least a lot of advertisements make the islands seem really appealing to try to attract people. The diction of the Bahamas is presented in such a way that it almost tells people to go, because it’s what is right and what they should do. In general, the advertisements presented for the Bahamas are definitely successful. The billboard is only a start, but it is backed up when one does some research, which then provides useful information. Advertisements target all types of people, including different ages, races and genders. Tactics used to target people is done through ethos, pathos, logos, and figurative and literal meanings. In all, the billboard and other advertisements used towards the Bahamas are presented well.

Works Cited
"About the Bahamas." The Islands of The Bahamas. Web. 18 Nov. 2009. <http://www.bahamas.com/?cmpid=pscgb>.

"The Bahamas." Web. 18 Nov. 2009. <http://www.thebahamasweekly.com>.

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[ 1 ]. http://www.thebahamasweekly.com
[ 2 ]. http://www.bahamas.com/?cmpid=pscgb…...

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