Lord Chesterfield

Topics: Rhetoric, Shame, Guilt Pages: 2 (407 words) Published: September 24, 2012
Chesterfield's purpose of the letter to his son was to confess his doubts. Chesterfield compared the advice to parents as ascribed to the moroseness, the imperiousness, or the garrulity of age. It signifies that Chesterfield didn't really want to give advice, but wanted to let his son know how he felt. Lord Chesterfield talks about his views on life and how his son could use them in his own life experiences and to “act right, upon more noble and generous principles”. By using this rhetorical strategy and antithesis, which is able to contribute to his effective approach as it, reveals how he values his family. Even before he starts the second column, his tone has changed from a more sincere and uplifting tone, into a scolding and belligerent lecture where he ridicules his son through antithesis. --“your shame and regret must be greater than anybody’s, because everybody knows the uncommon care which has been taken of your education” and only believes his son will survive because of him, “you [are] absolutely dependent upon me; that neither you have, nor can have a shilling in the world but from me.”

Lord Chesterfield wrote in a very formal diction to his son. This indicates that he was not very close to his son. Throughout his letter Lord Chesterfield uses a very educated and literal diction as well. He uses several different logical strategies that demonstrate his high level of education. Lord Chesterfield uses strategies such as flatteration and manipulation, shame, and guilt to reach his goal of controlling his sons feelings, emotions, and thoughts throughout the reading. He flatters himself and shames the son when he says “I can have no interest but yours in the advise I give you”.

The author attacks and accuses his son when he writes of “the uncommon care which has been taken of [his] education, and the opportunities [he has] had” (45). The attack also floods the son when Chesterfield hinted “how absolutely dependent [the son is] upon [him];...
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