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Compare and contrast the speeches made by Brutus and Anthony over the body of Caesar. Explain the ways in which Shakespeareexploits language for dramatic effect exploring the reactions both ofthe on stage crowd and the spectator watching theplay.

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Introduction

Compare and contrast the speeches made by Brutus and Anthony over the body of Caesar. Explain the ways in which Shakespeare exploits language for dramatic effect exploring the reactions both of the on stage crowd and the spectator watching the play. The speeches of Brutus and Anthony over the body of Caesar are, at first glance, very similar, but when one looks at the two speeches carefully and tries to analyse them, one finds that they contain distinct differences that make a huge difference to the overall effect on both the on-stage crowd and the audience watching the play. Straight away we can see a similarity between the speeches. They both begin by addressing the crowd in three ways. However, just these three words at the beginning of each speech set the tone for the entire speech. This is true in both cases. Brutus starts off by saying, "Romans, countrymen, and lovers!"(IIIii10) He starts off by calling them Romans. This shows that he sees them as Romans above all else. This is typical of Brutus' noble and generally very patriotic personality. This can be seen in IIi43-55 where he reads the letter sent to him by Cassius. ...read more.

Middle

He says that he loved Caesar but he loved Rome more, "Not that I loved Caesar less, but that I loved Rome more."(IIIii23) In this way Shakespeare and so Brutus manages to stir the crowd. They are all Romans and so when Brutus talks of his love for Rome being greater than his love for Caesar, the crowd (on stage) feel that he loves them more than he loved Caesar and are moved to him. Consequentially, the language Shakespeare uses here also moves the crowd watching the play. They feel he has killed Caesar for the good of Rome and even if they know that it was not for the good of Rome, the language employed has an effect so they feel that Brutus thought he was doing the right thing and so are moved to him. Anthony's speech is similar in the way that he expresses his love for Caesar but his speech is much cleverer than Brutus'. He does not say that his love for Rome is greater than his love for Caesar or visa versa, his love for Rome and Caesar is equal and so the on stage crowd would feel that he loves them just as much as he loved Caesar. ...read more.

Conclusion

The crowd are already forgetting their support for Brutus and will be likely to join a war to avenge Caesar. This is another example of how Anthony's understanding of the crowd's psychology surpasses Brutus'. The aim of the different types of language here is so that the audience watching the play can understand how simple the crowd are. They can only understand something if it is put to them in practical terms. The main difference between the two speeches is in the understanding of the crowd's psychology. All these points that I have mentioned where Brutus went wrong, they could all have been averted if Brutus would have understood how to work the crowd. He was speaking to them in terms beyond their comprehension and so failed to get his point of view across. This becomes obvious on a number of occasions, Fourth Cit: "Caesar's better parts shall be crown'd in Brutus."(IIIii53-54) Brutus has just said that he killed Caesar because he wanted to be crowned and the crowd now want to crown Brutus. That is just the point that Shakespeare is trying to get across. The crowd are ignorant and fickle and Shakespeare is trying to tell us this because it is so crucial later on in the play. That is what Shakespeare is trying to achieve in these two speeches. ...read more.

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