We had two things to read this time! Pericles’ Funeral Oration, and “A Modest Proposal” by Jonothan Swift.
The funeral oration came with an introduction that helped to explain it. According to the introduction, Pericles took the opportunity of giving this oration to talk about the benefits of the Greek democracy and to promote their government.
Our constitution does not copy the laws of neighboring states; we are rather a pattern to others than imitators ourselves.
In this sentence, Pericles appeals to the emotions of his audience. He wants them to feel pride in their country, and to support it. It is possible that, because this is during a war, Pericles needs the additional support of the people and tries to do this by making them feel pride in their country.
He goes on again to talk about how democracy means that, no matter what a persons social or political status, they can still have a say in everything. He tries to make his audience be glad that they do not have a tyrant ruling over them. He even refers to other nations as “antagonists.”
The next thing we read is quite horrifying.
I assume that it is a piece of satire, and hope it is (please don’t let this be serious). Jonathan Swift’s “A Modest Proposal” is basically a work that convinces people that the best thing to do with Ireland’s huge population of children is to start eating them. He using a very basic argument to convince his audience that it is the best thing to do, an easy food source and “delicious, nourishing, and wholesome food.”
The piece seems to highlight that many rich and upper class people care so little about the poor, that they would actually eat their children without batting an eyelash.