Jonathan Swift-A Modest Proposal

Words: 1522
Pages: 7

Everyone on the street could see that I was running late, literally. I had procrastinated getting ready, so now I was dashing between pedestrians with my backpack open, and praying to God that nothing would fall out. After a month of planning, I had finally set up an agreeable date to meet with Malcolm X, Thomas Jefferson, and Jonathan Swift to discuss “the role of rhetoric” for my midterm. We had discussed locations and specific times for weeks, and after all that preparation I ended up fifteen minutes late. Late for a discussion with some of the most influential people in literature. As I ran in the cafe, out of breath and sputtering out excuses and apologies, I had expected a lecture, or a scolding on lateness and its “[quote on lateness?].” …show more content…
“I’ve been dead for two centuries, how am I supposed to have remembered?” Jonathan Swift chuckled, “I have been dead for nearly as long, and I remembered.” Jefferson opened his mouth as if to respond. “Not the definition, but the concept of a dictionary. You know, where words are defined, in case you do not remember their meaning.” (The Complete Works of Jonathan Swift - A Modest Proposal) Thomas Jefferson looked like he was about to get on the table again, so I took my head back out of my bag with the notebook. “Okay! Rhetoric can be defined as the art of persuasive speaking or writing.” (Oxford English Dictionary) “Oh, that!” yelled Jefferson as he slapped the table, shaking the table and spilling a little of Malcolm X’s latte. I took out my pencils to start taking notes. “I know how to persuade people! You have to appeal to logic and reason, give good detail as to why you say what you do. Good use of logic impels an audience to take your side!” (Declaration of Independence) Malcolm X rolled his eyes. “Logic? Is that all you have on your side? That’s only half of how to use rhetoric! You have to appeal to sympathy and connection. The only way an audience can truly take your side is if you make them understand why you feel the way you do about your topic. When one can connect to the way you feel, they will take your side.” (The Autobiography of Malcolm