Rhetorical Anaysis Essay
Virginia Woolf’s fulsome poise and self-worth proves that she is worthy of being admired and looked up to by other women. She shares her beliefs of willingly going against what society has in mind for women and encourages women to be who they please to be. In doing so, she hopes to open up the sturdy doors that keep many women trapped away from their natural rights. All in all, Virginia Woolf’s speech, “Professions for Women” encourages women to ignore the limits society sets on them and be who they wish to be and do what they desire. Virginia Woolf’s rhetorical strategies in addition to her use of metaphor contribute to the overall effectiveness in fulfilling the purpose of her essay.
When delivering this speech to the Women’s Service League she uses a variety of rhetorical strategies to reach her audience and relate to them. In her first paragraph she mentioned that although she may be and employed woman, she doesn’t necessarily believe herself to be a professional. This statement is not only an appeal to pathos but it also builds credibility using ethos as well. She breaks down the barrier between her and her audience through this statement making them feel like she is just like one of them. Throughout the speech, her continual presentation of logic is only enhanced by her well phrased descriptions. “You are able, though not without great labour and effort, to pay the rent. You are earning your five hundred pounds a year. But this freedom is only a beginning—the room is your own, but it is still bare. It has to be furnished; it has to be decorated; it has to be shared.” In this, she not only speaks of the physical rooms itself that these women are finally able to afford due to their own efforts...
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...n conclusion, Woolf shows that although women of her time did not dare to question the authority of society, she didn’t stick to the status quo like the rest of them. She encouraged many women to no longer allow a man’s word overpower theirs. Because of her many women excelled beyond the norm and were freed from the doors that locked them away from their natural given rights. When Woolf delivered her speech to the National Society for Women’s Service, universal suffrage was a newly won political right. Modern readers will appreciate the historical context and relevance of “Professions for Women,” while being reminded that women still have a long way to go before achieving absolute equality. The speech serves as a reminder to all women that they are still the inferior gender in many cases and it will remain that way if women don’t take action.
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