Ap English Free-Response Questions Essay

In 1830, a weaver by the name John Downe writes a letter to his wife Sukey from the United States to England. Downe’s purpose in the letter is to persuade his wife Sukey into coming to America. He adopts an objective tone in order to glorify America in his letter to Sukey using ambiguity, repetition, and pathos. Downe begins his letter to Sukey by describing the incredibility of what America has given him. He then shifts to pathos when he begins using repetition.

He appeals to repetition by repeating “my dear” when addressing Sukey.

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He does this in order to emphasize his feelings towards his wife through his writing. When Downe moves to pathos, he uses guilt to persuade her. He describes that without her and the family he couldn’t be happy, but if they were to come and join him he could be happy again. He does this in order to motivate her into coming. Sukey’s husband then opens the letter by loosely describing the crossing of Atlantic.

He states that “[she] will find a few inconveniencies,” and that after she has made the journey over he knows it will be worth it all because he feels that she will like America.

He does this in order to glorify America and not focus on any negatives because his goal to persuade her. If he was to tell her fully what the cross would be like, she would not wish to go, and thus defeating Downe’s purpose. He wants her to believe that America is a good place, so he coaxed her into coming by creating America into something superb instead of the truth. He told her that “America is not like England,” thus making it seems America is a better place. Sukey would have no other choice, but to come to America and see her husband.

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