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How does Antony Rouse the Citizens to Rebellion in Act 3 scene 1 lines 80- 269. Julius Caesar.

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Introduction

How does Antony Rouse the Citizens to Rebellion in Act 3scene 1 lines 80- 269 The speeches take place at Julius Caesar's funeral, Brutus is one of the leaders of group of conspirators, who assassinated Julius Caesar in the senate. This would be like John Prescot stabbing Tony Blair during Prime Ministers question time. Antony who was one of Caesar's heir apparent and so was deeply upset by the murder. The conspirators allowed Antony to speak at the funeral as long as he did not criticise what they had done. Brutus allowed him to go second, which was a mistake as it allowed Antony to contradict what he had said with no chance of a return argument. In Brutus's speech he gives a reasoned argument to why he stabbed Caesar. He claimed that though he loved him, he loved Rome more. By doing this he stirred up the plebeians patriotism. This is his only method of persuasion whereas Antony uses several techniques. In Antony's speech there is no single method that he uses to persuade the crowd, instead he uses many methods combined and interwoven. There are three main methods however; he uses sarcasm to sow doubt in people's minds about Brutus, he also undermines Brutus using logical explanations, and finally he plays on people's emotions. ...read more.

Middle

Also he says that Caesar has filled the "general coffers" and he wept when "the poor cried" none of these traits are those of a tyrant as Brutus tried to make Caesar out as. After he has done this he says: - "My hart is in the coffin with Caesar And I must pause till it come back" In the BBC screen version of Julius Caesar you can see Keith Michelle looking to see how the crowd is reacting, he does this so that he know if it is safe for him to start a more direct and open criticism. When Antony returns he uses a new method, he plants ideas in the plebeians heads, "O masters, if I were dispos'd to stir Your minds to mutiny and rage I should do Brutus wrong, and Casius wrong" This is clever, as it makes the crowd think of starting riots, but what he is saying is that he does not want them to, as this would be in violation of his agreement that allowed him to speak at the funeral. Now that he knows the crowd is turning to his side he can bring out his trump card, Caesar's will. This plays on the general people's self interest, but he tantalises them, not reading out the will. ...read more.

Conclusion

Just as the crowd begins to leave he calls them back, reminding them of the will, which he had previously been so reluctant to read; "You have forgotten the will I told you of." This is where he is able to play on the selfishness of people as they want to hear what Caesar has left them, which turns out to be "seventy-five Drachmas" which was a fair amount of money. This finally shows that Brutus was wrong about him being ambitious and a tyrant, as he has given away a vast sum of money to the people. Now he can send the people off safe in the knowledge that he has worked them to a state of extreme fury. Finally he shows that he knows what he was doing with his speech as he says "Now let it work, Mischief thou art afoot, Take what course thou wilt" In conclusion his speech builds in persuasive power, until it reaches boiling point and makes the crowd start a mutiny. The success of his speech can be monitored in the attitude of the people, at first they are hostile, soon they start to see sense in his ideas, and finally they are so in favour of him that they go on the rampage destroying everything in sight. ...read more.

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