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How does Antony use rhetorical strategies (see below), figurative language and tonal...

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daphne00 | (Level 1) Salutatorian

Posted November 17, 2011 at 7:37 PM via web

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How does Antony use rhetorical strategies (see below), figurative language and tonal shifts on effectiveness of the speech in the funeral speech in Julius Caesar.

SPECIFICALLY:
1. rhetorical strategies (logos, ethos and pathos)
2. figurative language (repetition)
3. tonal shifts on effectiveness of the speech

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readerofbooks | College Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

Posted November 17, 2011 at 9:42 PM (Answer #1)

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There are so many rhetorical moves that Antony uses to win over the crowd. In light of this, I will only mention a few.

First, Antony downplays his own speech. This is a good strategy, because he wants to exceed the crowd's expectations and at the same time put more pressure on Brutus's speech. Moreover, he wants the people to know that his speech is not polished as if he were trying to trick the people. Antony is just a plain speaker of truth. [Ethos]

Second, Antony calls Brutus and Cassius "honorable" many times. In this way, he calls into question their honor. In other words, did they act honorably? Moreover, he calls the people not to mutiny. The fact that he mentions this suggests that it is an option. Is he planting thoughts? I think so. [Repetition.]

Third, he talks about Caesar's ambition, which was seen as dangerous in the Roman world from a historical point of view. However, he conflates this with generosity and love. The suggestion inferred is that Caesar might have been ambitious to benefit Rome. Moreover, did he not refuse a crown three times? [Tonal shift.]

All of these points make Antony's speech masterful.

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