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WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN RHETORICAL ANALYSIS AND CRITICAL ANALYSIS? Rhetorical analysis involves studying a text or any other piece of work to understand how an author makes an argument. When writing your essay, the task is to understand how the different parts of a piece of work come together to create meaning or to support the author’s argument and purpose. The analysis looks at a text’s rhetoric. Rhetoric refers to the linguistic choices that an author or creator makes when they write, argue, or speak. You will be looking at the choice of words, the way they construct sentences, and the tone they use when analyzing written work. Critical analysis refers to the detailed assessment of the ideas or the work of a creator. With critical analysis, you break down the work of a creator and study each of the parts. After the analysis, you can critique the work. You can present critical analysis as a written essay or an oral report. During the analysis, you look at the positive and the negative aspects of a piece of work.