He writes that government is a key source of corruption, and therefore the individual does not necessarily follow the law, but instead abides by what we believe to be right. In this case, a country's citizens abide by laws they believe to be right, and protest against those that are
Henry David Thoreau’s “On the Duty of Civil Disobedience” (first presented in 1848 and first published 1849) insists, — “That government is best which governs least”, or alternatively, — “That government is best which governs not at all.” Thoreau develops and supports his thesis statement by explaining what government is at best (an expedient) and usually is (inexpedient), and by giving a specific and current example to his readers. The author’s purpose was to educate the masses regarding civil disobedience, teaching them not only that it’s allowed, but that it’s a duty upon them in order to create an ideal government or even world. Thoreau’s intended audience is clearly the people who, as Thoreau himself said, “would not have consented to
Both Thoreau and King rely heavily on ethos to get their points across. The intended audience of both is similar; a group of people with similar morals as the writers, but who have neglected action for various reasons. King also appeals to pathos, describing the plight of the colored man vividly. King’s audience is largely aware of this situation already, but he uses it to drive them to action rather than simple awareness. On the other hand, Thoreau appeals little to pathos, focusing instead on logic and ethics.
The purpose of Thoreau's "Resistance to Civil Government" is to make an argument between what is right and what is convenient. He describes the dangers of listening and agreeing with everything a government says, or any large group of people, instead of paying attention to one's own conscience. Thoreau relates this idea to one personal experience he had when he was forced to spend a night in jail for refusing to pay a poll tax. He describes how the instance made him feel and how it differentiated from the way he saw his village. Before he understood how his everyday actions were similar to his knowledge of a larger democracy and government. His speech can be broken down into smaller parts that first emphasized the hard facts, then secondly,
f one followed the similarities of King's "Letter from Birmingham Jail" and Thoreau's "Civil Disobedience," they would notice that King may have been somewhat influenced by Thoreau's essay. The two essays also have many differences that are evident throughout analysis of the two essays that divide individual interpretation of each text. But it is obvious that the overall purpose of these two essays is to persuade the audiences that civil disobedience is necessary if there is social injustice in the government that governs over people.
Thoreau, knowing the widely accepted value of justice, says "If the injustice is part of the necessary friction of the machine of government, let it go, let it go; perchance it will wear smooth - certainly the machine will wear out. If the injustice has a spring, or a pulley, or a rope, or a crank, exclusively for itself, then perhaps you may consider whether the remedy will not be worse than the evil; but if it is of such a nature that it requires you to be the agent of injustice to another, then, I say, break the law. Let your life be a counter friction to stop the machine." His goal here is to inspire individuals to break unjust laws, to ultimately achieve the perfect idea of a government. By convincing his audience that civil disobedience is ethically and morally right, he achieves that goal. King takes a step back from civil rights to look at the big picture of moral rightness. “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly. Never again can we afford to live with the narrow, provincial "outside agitator" idea. Anyone who lives inside the United States can never be considered an outsider anywhere within its bounds.” This ethical argument is effective in showing how civil rights can benefit a much broader scope than what it seems. Through the use of ethical appeal, both Thoreau and King challenge their audience to target
Thoreau's usage of metaphor expresses the uselessness that the government is. He writes, " It is a sort of wooden gun to the people themselves..." Here, Thoreau compares the government to a wooden gun, saying that it is as useless as one. He believes that the government is but a wooden gun to the people meaning that it is as useful for the people as a wooden gun would help a person, not useful at all. This exemplifies Thoreau's ideology through metaphor.
Henry David Thoreau 1817-1862 born and raised in Concord, was a popular student in Harvard. Despite his financial and health deformities he was able to graduate from the university. By 1837 America was facing an economic depression and jobs were not easily available. Thoreau began to write poems and essays of transcendentalism to escape from the development and also to emphasize on nature. Therefore, he spent two years in Walden Pond (Schneider, 2013).
Although tone and mode are not directly stated, you can infer that Thoreau meant for his writing to be taken as serious and powerful. His implementation of words such as, "inexpedient," "execute," " integrity," and "command," makes one think about their lawful rights and reflect on what rights are supported or
In the passage from "Civil Disobedience," the author, Thoreau, utilizes rhetorical devices to support his theme. Such devices include tone and diction. The theme expressed in the text is that the government is in need of change and acceptance, not a replacement.
A rhetorical device Thoreau used to be logos mixed with pathos to convey the reader to see as he sees such as “live free and uncommitted” that would move a person to think living free is what I want and if it 's uncommitted then I’ll take it in my opinion. When you don 't have to worry about a little problem than most people would take it as life is already hard so if you can take a problem away that’s better.
In the passage, Thoreau used many different rhetorical devices and appeals, such as anaphora and repetition to emphasize the
Resistance to Civil Government (Civil Disobedience) is a dissertation written by American abolitionist, author and philosopher Henry David Thoreau published by Elizabeth Peabody in the Aesthetic Papers in 1849. Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862) was born and lived almost his life in Concord, Massachusetts. After finishing public and private school in Concord he attended the prestige Harvard University. He excelled at Harvard despite leaving school for several months due to health and financial setbacks. Mr. Thoreau graduated in the top half of his class in 1837. Mr. Thoreau argues that people should not allow any government to control or atrophy their thoughts or beliefs. Mr. Thoreau was an also remained a devoted abolitionist and has written
What makes a government and society moral and just has been a reoccurring question and issue throughout time. Henry David Thoreau, an American transcendentalist, stressed civil disobedience and greatly showed his disbeliefs on the Mexican-American War in his essay, “Resistance to Civil Government.” Through comparing the nation's political authority to a machine and not paying his taxes as a method of protest, Thoreau manages to coax the “true citizen” to stand up against unjust government.
He really innated the use of logos. They idea did not come across immediately but one the reader had though on the issue from some time the idea has become clear. He also used his writings as a tool to guide the way people think. Thoreau seemed more focused on reason; why is slavery wrong? Why should we give them freedom? Is giving them freedom better or worse for them, they have no education, no home no idea how to live? Could they adapt? These examples and many more were questions were raised by Thoreau’s writing even though it was not necessarily about slavery. Using an indirect approach makes it more adaptable to any circumstance. Unlike Douglas, Thoreau did not have a personal experience that he could incorporate into his writings. He was white, never owned slaves and had never been owned yet he knew that it was wrong. He used his intellect to show people how to think about slavery. In his except “Where I Lived and What I Lived For”, he talks about finding a nice place to live, he goes through questions about how his action will change the world around him and really thinks about his decision. This thinking process is exactly what he wanted people to apply to the issue of slavery,