Assignment #2 – Rhetorical Analysis
Jia Yi Karen Li
Tuesday, October 25th, 2022
Taylor Swift’s The Best Day (Taylor’s Version) is a 4 minute and 5 second song that was released alongside the rest of the rerecording of Fearless (Taylor’s Version) on April 9th, 2021, written and recorded originally in 2008. the rerecording was produced by Taylor Swift and Christopher Rowe, charted on Hot Country Song charts, and won Best Family Feature at the 2021 CMT Music Awards. The lyric video was uploaded on YouTube on the same day. The lyric video consists of old home videos of Swift and her family, parents and brother, when they were younger. The rhetorical strategy that The Best Day uses is pathos, the use of emotions in an argument or debate. The video of old home videos evokes a nostalgic feeling in the views and when paired with the lyrics of the song, a heartwarming feeling can be found. The home videos and lyrics can cause the listener or watcher to relive their own childhood and how their mother or family helped them get through tough times like Swift. While this song can relate to anyone with a close relationship with their family, Swift wrote this song for her family, especially her mother, Andrea Swift. This is explicitly shown throughout the song and its lyrics, as it references aspects of her childhood where her mother was there for her and specifically calls out her father and brother for being amazing people in her life. The purpose of the song was to thank her family for encouraging Swift’s music career. Because this was a song, Swift was able to use each verse to incorporate a story from her childhood that showed how her mother helped her. The stories and videos also show that Swift used ethos, the credibility that the speaker brings to the subject they are talking about, because she uses her own personal anecdotes to prove why and how her mother has helped her. Swift uses Kairos when she chronologically tells these stories in order to ‘walk’ the listener through parts of her life. She chose to use the same language she would have used as a child to emphasize how even as a young child, she could tell her mother was there for her. The rhetorical strategy used is interesting because the song could have been very straightforward to her mother, but Swift chose to use more vague and sweet tones for more people to connect with the song.