During the time of the anti-slavery cause, Mary Ann Shadd Cary utilizes rhetoric to ardently persuade her audience in order to establish the utter importance of her newspaper, The Provincial Freeman. Some of her most powerful tools to raise support for her efforts includes diction to emphasize the struggles of her kind, the contrast between Canadian and U.S. editorials, and most of all, the usage of personal pronouns to connect with her readers.
Using the pronouns, "we", Cary avoids the exclusive sense of "I" and "you" and effectively delivers her point across. Even with her first sentence, she begins with "We need an organ. . . for making our voices heard at home" to establish her argument as well as link with the readers immediately. Furthermore, in order to make a persuasive argument, Cary sustains what our common mindsets would be. Such instances include our need for our "own mouthpiece", "we hold our own responsibility", and "a free country we need not be ashamed of". The heart of any persuasive argument is a sense of empathy and understanding of the situation presented.
To underscore the hardship Cary and the fugitives had to endure, she utilizes particular word choices and contrast between Canada and the U.S. in order to set the tone of her article. Within the first paragraph, Cary implements the word "demagogue" to establish that the authoritative figures she has dealt with used underhanded tactics of manipulation, including preaching half-truths. In the sense of the word’s denotation and connotation, Cary is able to stake the claim of danger, peril, repression, and subjugation when in the mercy of the demagogue. Also, Cary's delineation of Canada leads readers to conclude a true sense of democracy. In this argument, she states that newspapers in Canada "[represent] . . . the intelligence of colored Canadians", that we take hold of "our own responsibility", and that a person has a right to send in their own opinions if they "find fault with [her...
This weekly newspaper was edited and published by negroes in the Province of Canada West (now called Ontario) where many fugitive slaves from the United States had settled. The first number, intended as a specimen, was issued at Windsor, dated March 24, 1854. The editor was Samuel A. Ward.
Mary Ann (Shadd) Carey was born on October 9, 1823, into a prominent black family in Wilmington, Delaware, the eldest of thirteen children. When she was ten years old, her parents moved to West Chester, Pennsylvania, where she attended a Quaker school for 5 years. Early in her life she became dedicated to the promotion of self-reliance and independence among black Canadians. She helped found the Provincial Freeman and became the first black North American female editor and publisher, with the purpose of transforming black refugees into model citizens. In 1856 she married Thomas F. Carey of Toronto, and the couple lived in Chatham, Canada, until his death in 1860. Mary Carey ultimately moved to Washington, D.C. where she opened a school for black children and in 1870 she became the first black woman lawyer in the United States.
Mary Ann Shadd Cary
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- Provincial Freeman, Chatham, Canada West – Complete 1854–1857