Rhetorical Strategies In Florence Kelley's Speech

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Gerrell Francis 10-20-14 1A "Rhetorical Strategies" Is America really the land of opportunity? For many people it is. America is a land to create a fresh start and achieve greatness. Yet even in America there are unfair laws and regulations, which make achieving that greatness difficult. Children are put to work in hard conditions, conditions deemed difficult even for adults. Florence Kelley uses her speech given at the National American Woman Suffrage Association in Philadelphia on July 22, 1905, to express her strong disapproval of child labor. Kelley’s use of diction and imagery help to argue how child labor is not just morally wrong, it is also unmerited. Imagery is part description, and part background knowledge. Kelley uses the knowledge her listeners have of their own childhood to enhance the troubles of child labor. “A little girl, on her thirteenth birthday, could start away from her home at half past five in the afternoon, carrying her pail of midnight luncheon as happier people carry their midday luncheon” (Kelley, 48-51). The audience can easily picture…show more content…
Kelley’s strong descriptions bring a sense of sympathy to her Philadelphia audience. Her use of diction further enhances how the present people are equally responsible for the cruelty that is occurring to the children. In doing so, she is able to bring forth a call to action in order to help support in her belief of removing the great evil of child labor. “For the sake of the children…we should enlist the workingmen voters, with us, in this task of freeing the children from toil!” (Kelley, 92-96). Kelley argues that the toil that plagues the future of the nation is child labor, and it is a toil that needs to be
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