Analysis- “The Rhetoric of Rapture”

Analysis-“The Rhetoric of Rapture”


Thehealthcare profession requires nurses to make decisions that impactthe health of the individuals they serve. These decisions entail theuse of clinical interventions as well as the application of advancedtechnologies. However, the making of these decisions occurs under aframework that eradicates the consideration of past practices.According to Nelson and Gordon (2004), the phrase rhetoric of rupturedescribes the tendencies nurses employ in discarding and avoidingtheir past. These trends create significant gaps in the nurse’sresponsibilities and their knowledge. These elements will bediscussed throughout this paper with emphasis on how nurses reinventthemselves and their practice while abandoning their history. Mostimportantly, it will analyze the factors considered by Nelson andGordon regarding the challenges facing the history of nursing interms of social legitimacy.


Researchindicates that shortage of nurses significantly affects health caresystems across the world thus leading to the nursing leadershipdevising and revising strategies aimed at improving the image ofnursing. Nevertheless, these shortages in the nursing professionemanate from a lack of understanding as well as valuing of the pastcontributions to the practice as well as to society. The prevalenceof these factors, however occur due to bias contributions from thenurses to the caring role encompassing the community. The authorsportray the significance of history in the development of aprofessional identity through instances that indicate the basis ofpublic appreciation for nurses (Depew, 2015). For example, theydetermine whether the appreciation of nursing emanates fromunderstanding their skills and knowledge or whether it occurs as aresult of the continuous tradition of accomplishments. The articleplays a major role in demonstrating the role of nurses as well asnursing in the development of modern approaches to healthcare. Itsituates nursing practices in their broader historical perspective.It identifies a variety of factors contributing towards the blatantrelegation of history in nursing practice, education and application(Depew, 2015).

Thearticle further indicates the under-utilization of traditionalmedical practice in the modern nursing practice. For instance, theauthors use case of a diagnosis of angina pectoris in critiquing thecontemporary use of medical professionalism with technologies thatdevalue the clinical skill. The use of such an instance brings outcrucial details of elites such as Dr. William Heberden, who describedthe condition centuries ago (Trimmer, 2015). The essence of the casein the article indicates how nursing involves a rebuke of pastpractice based on the expansion of technology as well as advancementin science and the medical profession. The authors depict the way thenursing profession attempts to portray an advanced perspectivethrough the presentation of views that criticize the historical andadvanced practicing nurses in an explicit and implicit manner.Consequently, the authors state that downplay in nursing skills aswell technical knowledge may be attributed to the labor disparitiesexisting between nursing and medicine (Trimmer, 2015).

Mostimportantly, the article seeks to determine why nursing continuouslyignores its past and claims to be reborn from distinct origins. Theachievement of this determination occurs through the realization thatthe levels of technology applied today, are very sophisticated whilescientific literacy has advanced to the extent that nurses fail toassociate their predecessor’s work. The reason behind thesefindings entails the fact that the advancement of scientific literacyemploys technology as opposed to tools in traditional practices(Trimmer, 2015). The authors depict the rhetoric aspect in thenursing practice through indicating that the history of reinventionbrings about the belief that nurses in the traditional era failed tobase their practices on scientific knowledge and practice (Trimmer,2015). However, they employed intuitions that require acknowledgmentof the fact that much of what they did, included medical technologyof the time. Ironically, nurses in the present world base theirresponsibilities on the current scientific theories, skilledobservation as well as critical thinking.

Mostimportantly, the article highlights the challenges facing the nursingprofession through the rhetoric of rupture. Some of the problemshighlighted include the devaluation of nursing skills that bringabout disparagement of technical competence as mechanical work. Thesechallenges portray the perspective that practical knowledge does notnecessarily refer to knowledge (Christensen, 2011). On the otherhand, clinical ability does not involve decision making and criticalthinking. The problem in these factors entails demeaning of thenurses who fail to conform to the advanced technological reformsregarding their skills. Eventually, these activities eradicate thesignificant contributions made by nurses over decades to the healthcare system. The constant repeat of these perspectives in promotionalmaterial depicting nursing practice as a profession undertaken bypeople lacking responsibility to make decisions, nursesunintentionally reinforce the traditional view that most nursingskills are components of medical knowledge (Christensen, 2011). Theauthors thus recommend that in order to achieve social legitimacynurses ought to learn modern practices applied in the past. Thestudent pursuing nursing professions require education on the skillsand integrity employed by traditional surgical nurses. On the otherhand, development of understanding regarding the essence of dailynursing practice should be acquired by nursing leaders. Theseelements would allow understanding and respect for nursing as aprofession built from a reputable history (Christensen, 2011).


Christensen,&nbspM.(2011). Advancing nursing practice: redefining the theoretical andpractical integration of knowledge.&nbspJournalof Clinical Nursing,&nbsp20(5-6),873-881. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2702.2010.03392.x

Depew,&nbspD.(2015). Review: The Theory and Practice of Life: Isocrates and thePhilosophers, by Tarik Wareh.&nbspRhetorica:A Journal of the History of Rhetoric,&nbsp33(3),320-322. doi:10.1525/rh.2015.33.3.320

Trimmer,&nbspK.(2015). Evaluation as an Educational Development to Improve Practice:Teacher ICT Knowledge, Skills and Integration.&nbspEducationalDevelopments, Practices and Effectiveness,93-110. Doi: 10.1057/9781137469939_6