Slave Breaker Rhetorical Analysis Essay

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In Frederick Douglass's "slave breaker" passage, he uses many rhetorical strategies to describe the horrors of living under a man named Mr. Covey. This man surfaced in chapter 10 who was a wretched soul full of false morals and deceiving powers. Throughout the passage Frederick emphasizes tone and shares anecdotes of his experiences describing them with metaphor, parallelism and emotional appeal. In coalesce with the first paragraph, Frederick makes a point to convey Mr. Covey as a devilish creature by giving him snake like qualities. When referring to him throughout the passage he describes him with animalistic adjectives. His actions are characterized as "cunning," "sneaky" and "coiled up," words used when referring to that of a snake. In addition to these allusions, Frederick produces a…show more content…
The audience already has a clear understanding of the tone set forth when referring to Covey, but now Frederick almost expresses sympathy for him. "Poor man! Such was his disposition, and success at deceiving, I do... believe that he sometimes deceived himself... that he was a sincere worshipper of the most high God." This sympathy coaxed on by Frederick almost has a tone of mockery imbedded in it. All through the book he discusses Covey with the utmost distaste, and yet, for a moment, he sympathizes with the man as if to find reason for his actions. Implying that all the deceiving Covey had done now, came back to him and that was why Frederick felt pity for the him. This could be seen as Coveys negative karma finding its way back. Throughout the passage the rhetorical and stylistic choices Frederick Douglass used convey a disgust towards a character who's actions set forth a series of events and the likemindedness he hopes to acquire from his audience. Metaphors, parallelism and emotional appeal are examples of the strategic ways Frederick expresses his
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