RAE #2
Jane Adams through her speech to the Chicago Union League Club advances
her argument that people should look to George Washington’s legacy for guidance
on how society should be structured through her deft use of juxtaposition, rhetorical
questions, and a nationalistic diction.
Through her use of rhetorical questions, Jane Adams galvanizes the audiance
to her cause. When describing George Washington as a statesman Adams begins
with a rhetorical question. In this she is alluding to the idea that the constitution
was written to make all men equal and that Washington slaved over how to do it
through the use of “night after night”. Adams also follows this rhetorical question
with anaphora. The use of anaphora quickly and positively answers the question
poised the line prior. Adams uses the repetition of “if he knew” to pose the answer
to her rhetorical question of how Washington would react if he knew about how
people were treated now. This forces the reader to accept the fact that the vision
that Washington had for America is not being achieved. And that society should look
to the vision that Washington had and fix the ills that plague it.
Through her use of nationalistic diction, Adams galvanizes the audiance to
her cause of social change. When attempting to explain to her audiance how social
change should be modeled after Washington she states “we will have to rouse our
national consciousness as well as our national pride” in order to advance her point
of view. She uses a nationalistic diction through the words: “pride”, “patriotism”,
“our flag”, “righteousness”, and “glorious”. This diction engages the audience and
taps into their inner sense of patriotism and duty to their country which Jane adams
uses to further her argument on the legacy of George Washington.
Through her use of a deft juxtaposition, Jane Adams galvanizes her audiance
to her position on the legacy of Washington. Adams uses words such as: “pain”,
“sorrow”, “insanitary”, and “cripples” to juxtapose what the audience thinks of
George Washington. She taps into the idea that Washingtons dream of a society with
“equal and free” peoples is being slandered and transformed into some thing more
dark and nasty. She actively pursues the idea that George Washington would be
appalled at the condition at which the state of “opportunity” is in through her use of
the words: “lose”, “chance”. She points out that Washington believed that society
only exists as a figment of opportunity and that the state of opportunity is in a poor
In order to advance her argument that George Washington’s legacy should
provide “inspiration” for how society should be structured Adams uses
Juxtaposition of Washingtons vision for equality versus the current vision of
equality, rhetorical questions about how Washington would react to the current
state of equality, and a nationalistic diction in order to convince the audiance that it
is in the best interest of the country.