Virginia Woolf's Essay 'Professions For Women'

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In Virginia Woolf’s essay “Professions for Women”, she uses different rhetorical appeals to prove her point. She talks about the hardships of being a woman journalist and how professional women have many obstacles to overcome to become a professional woman. The main obstacle that Woolf believes every woman has to overcome to be successful was the “angel” or the voice in our own minds. Woolf’s most effective appeal in this essay was pathos but she also included ethos as well as logos. Woolf wrote this essay in the 30s and in that time, women were still fighting for equality. So the fact that she was a female journalist in that time must have been extremely tough. She used her experience of being in the workplace and also her experience of being a woman to argue these issues. I believe she wrote to inspire other women, especially in that era, to rise above those voices and other obstacles. The first rhetorical appeal that Woolf uses in her essay was ethos. Virginia Woolf was a female journalist in the 30s and she discusses the hardships of professional women. At the beginning of the essay, Woolf mentions “When your secretary invited me to come her, she told me that your society is concerned with the employment of women and she suggested that I might tell you something about my own professional experiences.” She was asked to speak to…show more content…
Woolf uses many different examples in this essay of logos; many of those indirectly. One for example “You are able, though not without great labor and effort, to pay rent. You are earning your five hundred pounds a year.” She is claiming that women can earn money and can be independent but not for much. She’s arguing that women finally had the ability to do these things so they shouldn’t let the phantoms stop them. Woolf’s indirect examples to persuade women to overcome the phantoms were very effective. Although, I believe her claims could have been better if she included actual
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