In addition to creating ethos with her accolades

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In addition to creating ethos with her accolades, Stanton gains credibility through her diction and language. These rhetorical choices were imperative to the validity and persuasive elements of her revolutionary speech. By using words such as “instrumentalities”, “precept”, “impel”, “usurpations”, and “despotism”, Stanton demonstrates her intelligence; a stark difference to most women of the time due to the lack of access to higher education. In addition, Stanton also chooses repetitive, colloquial pronouns like “he” and “she” that according to Everything’s an Argument, “create relationships with audiences that feel more intimate” (Lunsford & Ruszkiewicz 310). She states, “He has never permitted her to exercise her inalienable right to elective franchise.” By using these gender-specific pronouns she is forcing her audience to connect with her on a more real level. With her persuasive and formal language, Stanton sets up the overall structure of 1848’s “Declaration of Sentiments” by copying and mocking Thomas Jefferson’s “Declaration of Independence” of 1776. Through this stylistic choice, Stanton is creating familiarity for her intended audience – men, women, and the government. By small scope, the audience of this speech were the people, mostly women, in attendance of the Seneca Falls Convention. In a broader sense, Stanton is intending on reaching all American men and women, especially the American government. In true rhetorical fashion, Elizabeth Cady Stanton uses her audience to
3 get her point across. By imitating Jefferson’s “Declaration of Independence” in her first two paragraphs, Stanton promises that women will no longer put up with the degradation they have accepted throughout history. Stanton powerfully argues that women will no longer put up with the “abuses and usurpations” that men have put them through and will fight for the “equal station to which they are entitled”. They will overthrow the government and church to get what they want – rights in the family and in the law. They are now refusing to pledge “allegiance” to a government that does not allow all of its people “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” (Stanton). By adding the “women” in “all men and women are created equal”, Stanton is asserting her belief that Jefferson’s Declaration must be amended. She is demanding reform to

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