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Lets take a look at the methods Wilberforce used to persuade the British parliament to abolish slavery. Read the speech. Listen to it as you read. Listen for two things
1. Describe the epistemological resources he uses to underpin his arguments against slavery. give an example from the text of the speech for each episteme you can see. Post these comments prior to reading what you colleagues have posted.
For example, Wilberforce stands on an episteme of rhetorical debate when he says “I will therefore believe, if it were not for the enormous magnitude and extent of the evil which distracts their attention from individual cases, and makes them think generally, and therefore less feelingly on the subject, they would never have persisted in the trade. ” In this case, he partly excuses the merchants because they see not the injustice due to a focus on the business as a whole, insulating them from the human misery.
2. Also comment on Wilberforce’s use of pathos in his arguments. How effective is it? Is this his only form of proof, or do you see ethos and logos involved also? Provide a quote and explain.
3. Finally, tell us what the argument methods and epistemes in this speech reveals about Wilberforce’s assessment of the audience–the members of Parliament who were voting on the resolution to abolish slavery. What kind of audience was this?
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