- A Rhetorical Analysis of A Modest Proposal, an Essay by Jonathan Swift
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- A Modest Proposal Rhetorical Analysis ⇒ Free Book Summary
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Once again, he is stating all logical points that could actually solve the problems of Ireland while being cynical and sarcastic, all while proving his point that Ireland needs help. Swift speaks about the economic values of his plan as well. Swift is convincing his readers that this plan really could get the country out of the economic slump that they are in. By making people think, he is proving his point about all the social issues that have arose in the country.
Throughout the essay Swift is also taking shots at the rich of the country and how they walk all over the poor without even thinking of helping them. He shows this point, through his witty satire, when he was talking about using the children for food. Once he states that he can no longer participate in his plan his readers start to realize that the entire essay was full of sarcasm, satire, and mockery.
Once his readers realize this they also start to recognize all the social issues that he is addressing and how he is stating that if no one can come up with a better plan than Ireland is doomed. Through Jonathan Swifts satirical wisdom he is able to get his point across about many social issues such as poverty, hunger, abortion, marriage, and overpopulation. His essay on the benefits of cannibalism was able to show people that no one has come up with effective or logical ideas to solve any of these issues.
Instead of addressing the issue directly, Swift used witticism to state his views on the subject and was very effective in doing so. Swift, Jonathan. Nancy R. Comley et al.
Martins, Kerri-Anne Bross site map. Show Comments 0 and Tags. In order to comment on this portfolio you must be logged in to the school or organization it is associated with. If you have a Digication account, you may log in below: username: password:. A Modest Proposal is a persuasive essay where Swift utilized the most powerful skill to "persuade" people to "accept" his advice.
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Jonathan Swift wants to persuade people to "accept" the proposal proposed by the Projector. A Modest Proposal is famous for its writing style and the ironical effects. Students are always puzzled by some English writing skills and do not clearly know how to use these skills.
A Rhetorical Analysis of A Modest Proposal, an Essay by Jonathan Swift
How to organize an article and how to persuade readers are two difficult points in writing. By analyzing the persuasive devices and rhetorical devices in A Modest Proposal , readers can get a general glimpse of writing good argumentation and Jonathan Swift's thoughts. This thesis focuses on how the author uses the three persuasive appeals: ethos, logos and pathos, how the author uses rhetorical devices in this essay and through the analysis how the author persuades his readers to "accept" the Projectors proposal.
In order to study further the persuasive skills the author used in this essay and try to give readers a careful picture of persuasive usage, some careful studies have been conducted in this thesis. The purpose of this thesis is to explain the usage of some persuasive appeals and rhetorical devices in A Modest Proposal , and give readers a general understanding of the author's thoughts on then Ireland's social issues.
This section will provide a brief description on the significance of the study given the analysis on the essay from the persuasive appeals and rhetorical devices. This thesis will give people a general understanding of the art of persuasion, the usage of some rhetorical devices, some themes of the essay indirectly expressed by the author and the great effects of the use of satire.
This thesis is divided into five parts. The first part is the introduction, where the research background, research motivation and research questions, research purpose and research significance and the outline of this essay are explained. Chapter Two presents the literature review.
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Chapter Three focuses on three persuasive appeals used in A Modest Proposal. Chapter Four looks for some rhetorical devices used in the essay. The conclusion part generally gives the main discoveries of the essay. This thesis studies the persuasive and rhetorical art of this essay, and at the same time it also briefly introduces Jonathan Swift the person and then social background. Clarkson and E.
Crotty tells the agricultural condition of then Ireland.
A Modest Proposal Rhetorical Analysis ⇒ Free Book Summary
These works have given a general description of the author and the background. The works which mainly studies the persuasive appeals is Rhetoric by Aristotle which focuses on the use of language as both a vehicle and a tool to shape persuasive argument. This thesis cites some definitions or thoughts from the Chinese version of Rhetoric. Harris, which have introduced a list of English rhetorical devices commonly used in English writing.
The usage of some rhetorical devices is explained in these two books. The author has successfully used some classical rhetorical devices in A Modest Proposal. Devices of Persuasion. Ethos, or argument by character, employs the persuader's personality, reputation, and ability to look trustworthy. From the etymology, Ethos originates from a Greek word ethikos, which means moral or showing moral character.
What Aristotle think is that a speaker must establish his moral credibility from the very beginning and then the audience will give credit to what the speaker said. The Projector wants to persuade his audience to accept his suggestion that children of one year old be fatten and eaten which he thinks is the best way to solve the poverty issue and relieve the overpopulation problem in then Ireland.
It is a melancholy Object to those, who walk through this great Town, or travel in the Country, when they see the Streets, the Roads, and Cabin-Doors, crowded with Beggars of the female Sex, followed by three, four, or six Children, all in Rags, and importuning every Passenger for an Alms. These Mothers instead of being able to work for their honest livelihood, are forced to employ all their time in Strolling, to beg Sustenance for their helpless Infants, who, as they grow up either turn Thieves for want of work, or leave their dear native Country to fight for the Pretender in Spain, or sell themselves to the Barbadoes.
At the very beginning, the Projector describes the sympathetic scene in Ireland and tells the reader that there are many poor parents who are supposed to be engaged in a job to support their families are begging in the streets. Readers are very likely to have sympathy for these parents and their children. Through the description of the circumstances of then Ireland, Swift successfully attracted the readers' attention and also the landlords' and the Politicians'.
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At this point, the Projector has established his primary credit among his readers. However, the Projector is brave enough to put forward his "reasonable" but actually appalling suggestion. Although the projector makes readers ready to listen to his following words carefully, he does give his readers a scare and arouse their interests and curiosity.
People who have read through the first part of the essay think the author may show his concern on the poverty issue forwardly or give some feasible advice on this problem. Surprisingly, the author did not follow the regular practice, and only the readers who have read his suggestion do realize how ironic his suggestion is.
Logos is argument by logic. The word Logos originates from Greek and it stands by logic and orderliness. Can you trust the speaker's use of logic? At first, the Projector presents a miserable image: women and children are begging on the streets of Ireland. These mothers, unable to work for their livelihood, "are forced to employ all their Time" panhandling for food.
The children, also for want of work, grow up to be thieves, or else emigrate "to fight for the Pretender" or to seek their fortunes in the Americas. He then begins to detail his proposal. The Projector carefully calculates the amount of children and the profits these children could bring to their parents and the country.
He even suggests that the thrifty landlords flay the Carcass. He also mentions the refinement of his scheme by "a true lover of his country": replace the want of venison with "the Bodies of young Lads and Maidens, not exceeding fourteen Years of Age". Furthermore, the proposer thinks that he has "too long digressed", and therefore he returns to his subject.
He continues to enumerate the advantages of his proposal: poor tenants, national economy, marriage, mothers' love for their children, exportation of beef and a standard of other meats will all get more or less profits from the practice of his proposal. Thus, readers may reach a consensus that his proposal is undoubtedly "a fair, cheap and easy method of making these Children sound and useful Members of the common-wealth". The proposer emphasizes that he has only the public Good of his country in his mind and has not the least personal interest in this proposal.
What a "loyal and duteous" statesman he is! From the order of this essay, the persona the author presents is a statesman who is weary of the inadequate solutions of the concerning issues of this country and puts forward a practical method to solve those problems. Readers are inclined to side with the proposer at the very beginning for the proposer does not give his reason. It becomes very clearly that this is an irony and at the same time a "hypocritical" persuasive essay when cannibalism which is the least possible accepted by almost all normal and emotional people appears next in this essay.
From the ironic effect of this essay, the logic of the Projector is reasonable and well organized: the Projector first depicts the miserable scene in Ireland, then he presents his worries, next he solemnly puts forward his proposal, and then he enumerates the advantages of his proposal and points that the revise of his scheme and other alternative solutions are unrealistic, at last he is just for the good of the public instead for any personal interests.
Pathos is argument by emotion.