Chief Seattle Essay Response

1557 WordsOct 25, 20127 Pages
Set in Tone Chief Seattle responds to the proposed offer, by Governor Isaac I. Stevens, of buying the remaining Indian lands and creating reservations by explaining why the white should treat them fairly even though they cannot fight back through the use of rhetorical strategies; devices such as figurative language, organization and tone as he appeals to pathos, the emotional aspect of his speech’s audience. The part of Chief Seattle’s oration that we have been given starts off with a resigned tone. “This is kind of him for we know he has little need of our friendship in return”; the quote seems to imply that the Chief understands that he wields less power than the white leaders as the white leaders do not actually need their friendship and the tone is resigned in that the Chief seem to just accept the current situation as the white people “are like the grass that covers vast prairies” while his “people are few. They resemble the scattering tress of a storm-swept plain.” The Chief continues in a resigned tone about the state of his people as he states that “this indeed appears just, even generous, for the Red Man no longer has rights that he need respect, and the offer may be wise, a s we are no longer in need of an extensive country” indicating that since there are so many more white people and the Indians no longer truly need as much land due to their small numbers, it would be wise to just give in to the requests of the white as they are currently more powerful. The two quotes used earlier describing the numbers of the white and Indian populations are also good examples of figurative language. The imagery regarding the prairie and the trees helps the audience imagine the difference in numbers between the two. Also, as the “yonder sky has wept tears of compassion,” we, as the audience, feels a sense of sorrow as the sky was weeping, which is

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