Julius Caesar Rhetorical Analysis

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In William Shakespeare’s play “Julius Caesar” Mark Antony unleashes a powerful speech during Caesar’s funeral, aiming to persuade the people of Rome that Brutus was fallacious to kill Caesar and that they should avenge his death. In Antony’s oration, he argues his case against Brutus by using the rhetorical strategies of Ethos, Pathos and Logos to manipulate his audience to be on his side, rather than Brutus’s side. These three persuasion tools allow his audience to connect with him and he is able to effectively argue his case against than Brutus. Antony’s first priority is to establish ethos in his speech. Since Brutus is a friend of the powerful Caesar, Antony must transcend his credibility and prove to the Romans that he …show more content…
For example, Antony refutes Brutus’s claim that Caesar is ambitious. Antony claims “When the poor have cried, Caesar hath wept: / Ambition should be made of sterner stuff: / Yet Brutus says he was ambitious ;”( Shakespeare, 10). Antony uses deductive reasoning to come to the false conclusion that Caesar is ambitious because of his determent character traits to take over Rome as a tyrant. The major premise Antony pleas is that people who are ambitious are determined to take control and the minor premise is that Caesar is ambitious. For instance, Caesar cares so much about the Romans that he would cry for them and even hand them property (Shakespeare, 10). Antony manipulates the audience by using this deductive reasoning to prove that it is unjust to murder someone who cares so much about them. Antony starts with a universal truth and backs it up with evidence. He is giving the citizens of Rome further knowledge, so they can make their own decision. From this truth, Antony was able to reach the conclusion that Brutus cannot be labeled as a honest man when he said that Caesar was ambitious and Antony had just proved his point wrong. The audience comes to a realization that they cannot trust Brutus. The conspirator had portrayed himself as a man who was looking out for the commoners best interests, but his fraud personality causes the audience to doubt the reasons for the …show more content…
The audience is more likely to follow the argument if it is credible, evokes emotion in them and has evidence that backs it up. He uses ethos to add to his argument’s validity because he uses statements that makes the audience feel that he has their best interests at mind (Eunoia). He establishes pathos to add to his argument because he uses emotional phrases to make the audience take action in the matter and act how he wants them to. Finally, he uses Logos to add to his argument’s validity because he gives them examples that they can relate to. Since the speaker gives the audience further knowledge about the situation, they can now make their own decisions on the matter. Shakespeare reveals that the use of persuasive techniques plays a major role in what people will believe in. Antony perfectly tailors all these elements in his speech to achieve the goal of getting the commoners on his side and against

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