4th Of July Rhetorical Analysis

775 Words4 Pages
Rhetorical Analysis

Frederick Douglass composed a speech for the 4th of July for the citizens of Rochester, New York. He emphasizes the hypocrisy of the American Government in his "What To The Slave Is The 4th Of July?". The people of Rochester thought that it would be suitable for Douglass to write the speech because he was a slave.

Fourth of July is a celebration marking America's independence from Great Britain. Every year we celebrate with fireworks and a celebration to celebrate the freedom that was granted to us yet the slaves weren't considered independent. Slaves were treated with no respect at all as Douglass uses parallelism to show how slaves were treated equivalently to trash. "What am I to argue that it is wrong to make men
…show more content…
That he is the rightful owner of his body? you have already declared it. [...] there is not a man beneath canopy of heaven who does not know that slavery is wrong for him” (14) The whole statement here is hypocritical because men shouldn’t have to argue the necessity of liberty it should be basic knowledge. The only person who can have hold of your character would be your parents because they were the ones who conceived and raised you. Instead of just explaining why slavery is morally wrong Douglass uses syntax to add an extra effect and attract attention to his claim. The speech is a mockery to Frederick Douglass and his fellow brothers and sisters who were victims to slavery. “FELLOW CITIZENS, above your nation, Tumultuous joy,I hear the mournful wails of millions!- whose chains, heavy and grievous yesterday, are rendered more intolerable by the jubilee shouts that reach them”(5) The injustice of slaves hasn’t been resolved and while many people wail with joy other battle their way through each day. They have been sold countless of times yet no one does anything. Abolitionist can only do so much to give them the life that slaves deserve. Instead of being so hypocritical and mocking towards the people who have worked harder than anyone who is present in the audience. Those who haven’t felt the despair in their bones should stand up and fight for the meaning of the Fourth of
Open Document