Martin Luther King’s “I have a dream” and Abraham lincoln’s “Gettysburg Address” Essay

Of the great oral presentations this world has actually seen, many of them act as an outlet for people to articulate their perfects and beliefs to a greater audience. The way in which terrific speakers such as Martin Luther King Jr and Abraham Lincoln do this is through speech elements such as rhetoric, language strategies, successful structure and likewise establishing a relationship with their audience. The speeches I have a Dream, and The Gettysburg Address [], although performed to totally different audiences in different contexts, share comparable worths and qualities.

In order to get a total understanding of the unique qualities of the speeches we should initially take a look at the context in which they were composed.

On August the 28th 1963, Martin Luther King Jr stood before a congregation of over 200,000 individuals in front of the Lincoln Memorial. It was on this day that King delivered his statement to mankind in an effort to end black partition within America.

Regardless of strong opposition from the Kennedy Administration, King and his contemporaries continued with the civil liberties march.

Basing on the exact same area as Lincoln did 5 score years back, King preached comparable themes of justice, equality and freedom for guy. Lincolns speech came as a eulogy to those lost at the battle of Gettysburg. At the time America was at civil war and the uneasy crowd was desperate for inspiration from their President. He was speaking last to a crowd of 15-20,000 Northerners to honour the dead and motivate them to keep combating the war.

The context of each address has a profound impact upon their function and qualities. One distinct quality of Lincolns speech is that it was structured chronologically with each of the three separate paragraphs requiring the past, present and future. The lengths of the paragraphs can likewise be kept in mind as an unique quality of the Gettysburg Address, the first paragraph is rather little followed by progressive lengthening of the second and last paragraph. This is an instrument utilized by Lincoln to develop his audiences attention to the climatic end to his speech where he describes what is required for the future. This can be compared to Kings structural method, where he uses a ladder technique to configure his points in order of ascending importance. Once again ending strongly with the line: Free at last! Free at last! Thank God Almighty we are free at last!.

Rhetoric is typically specified as the art of using language so as to persuade or influence others. From this we can deduce that it is a crucial element of any reliable speech. Definitely I have a dream and The Gettysburg Address contain effective rhetoric techniques used to additional communicate the concepts of King and Lincoln.

Kings speech is based heavily around repetition. He uses this in the lines, One hundred years later on, I have a dream and Let freedom ring. All repeated to get suspense from the audience as well as stressing his themes of equality and justice. King says them with such authority and power to additional drive house the importance of these styles. Utilizing his voice to produce a sense of urgency about the concern.

King likewise uses scriptural allusion such as Gods Kid and Psalm 23: Rise from the dark and desolate valley of partition to the sunlit path of racial justice. This reflects his role as a Priest in addition to giving evidence of Gods want of justice. The biblical allusions also give a sense of unity amongst the audience.

Establishing a connection with your audience is central to communicating your ideas in a speech, both King and Lincoln do this exceptionally. Utilizing inclusive language such as the words we and us, Lincoln particularly has the ability to establish an equality throughout his audience with the common function of liberty and victory.

In his eulogy, Lincoln utilizes the line for those who offered their lives that the country may live which again makes use of the audiences patriotism to articulate his concepts through personification.

By referring to both Lincolns Emancipation Declaration and The Declaration he was able to highly back up his argument and appeal to the nations Patriotism along with provide historic evidence to the sluggish development of equality in America.

This would have a great result on the happy Americans in his audience because a rejection of Kings worths would eventually imply for them a rejection of Americas standard worths.

Without correct delivery, these two speeches wouldve been ignored in value and would not have had the terrific result they did. I believe the values suggested in both texts validated by both the context and the rhetoric.

Upon reaching conclusion, one realises that if not for fantastic speakers and use of rhetoric, the concepts of considerable historical figures could not exist as well, as thus couldnt have the desired result. Martin Luther King Jr and Abraham Lincoln were examples of this, males who, by use of control of language and audience, altered the world.


2008 Lexico Publishing Group, LLC. Accessed: 08/06/08 -09/ 06/08.

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