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Research one of the following famous persuasive moments and describe the circumstances — the historical situation, the issues at stake, the purpose of the argument — that make it so memorable.

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Research one of the following famous persuasive moments and describe the circumstances — the historical situation, the issues at stake, the purpose of the argument — that make it so memorable.
What do you think was the speaker’s/author’s purpose?

Who was the intended audience and how does that audience affect the writing?

What style and tone does the speaker/author use? Why?

What rhetorical appeals does the speaker/writer use? Ethos? Pathos? Logos? All three?

How is the speech/text organized? Why do you think the writer chose that pattern?

What kinds of evidence does the speaker/author include to support the point of view, and how was that evidence used?

In the conclusion to your essay, summarize the main points of your analysis to explain its significance and to draw to a clear and specific conclusion.

What conclusions can you draw about the role in general of rhetorical appeals and strategies in producing clear and effective communication through writing?

Was the author successful in using rhetorical appeals for the intended audience and purpose?

1. Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address (1863)

2. Elizabeth Cady Stanton’s “Declaration of Sentiments” at the Seneca Falls Convention (1848)

3. Chief Tecumseh’s address to General William Henry Harrison (1810)

4. Martin Luther King Jr.’s “Letter from Birmingham Jail” (1963)

5. Cesar Chavez’s Commonwealth Club Address (1984)

6. Malala Yousafzi’s speech to the United Nations (2013)

7. President Obama’s eulogy in memory of the worshippers killed at the Emmanuel AME Church in Charleston (2015)

Once you have chosen the speech to analyze, break down your analysis into three parts:

• The historical context: What was the historical occasion or historical situation surrounding the speech?

• The issues at stake: What were the key issues the speaker trying to confront?

• The purpose of the argument: This is the rhetorical analysis part of your paper. What was the writer/speaker’s purpose? How does the writer/speaker use rhetorical strategies and appeals to achieve that purpose?

SOURCE REQUIREMENT

At least two sources and you must include at least one paraphrase or summary or direct quotation from the speech or writing you are analyzing.

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