William Shakespeare 's Julius Caesar Essay

2414 Words10 Pages
Christa Kiesling
AP Lang Block 1
Mr. Snider
6 Nov. 2016
RA1
William Shakespeare, in his historical play Julius Caesar, makes the characters Brutus and Antony utilize rhetorical strategies in order to win the favour of the Roman people for their own purposes. These two speakers try to convince the audience of different things: where Brutus, who speaks first, was trying to subdue the passions of the mob and use logic to win acceptance for his murderous actions, Antony, who had to follow Brutus, was trying to awaken the passions of the mob and stir up the need for revenge. In addition, Antony had the additional challenge that he was not allowed to speak ill of Brutus and his fellow conspirators. To persuade their audience, the characters manipulate the use of persona to move the audience’s perception of themselves, to establish or reinforce the strengths of their positions, and to undermine each other’s arguments.
First, both Brutus and Antony use persuasion by manipulating syntax to make the audience relate to and accept certain personas so that they would see the death of Caesar from each speaker’s point of view. When Brutus addresses the Roman crowd to explain why he and the other conspirators killed Julius Caesar, he states, “Romans, countrymen, and lovers!” (line 24). He uses parallel structure to emphasize the persona that he wants the people to take on. He puts “Romans” first in his list because Rome is the most important thing to him, and he wants the people to
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