Comparative Analysis - Elie Wiesel and Hilary Rodham Clinton

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Comparative Analysis - Elie Wiesel and Hilary Rodham Clinton By Chania Baldwin

The two speeches orated by Elie Wiesel and Hilary Rodham Clinton were delivered in 1995 to influence change. Wiesel’s, ‘Listen to the silent screams’ was delivered at Auschwitz. World leaders and survivors listened as he influenced the audience to act upon racial hatred and religious extremism. Clinton delivered her speech at the United Nations 4th conference on Women’s Rights Plenary Session in Beijing. This is ironic given China’s poor record for human rights violations, particularly against females. Delegates and women from all over the world came to hear her rebuttal, ‘Women’s rights are human rights’. Both Wiesel’s and Clinton’s speeches are relevant today as both their aspirations of human rights for all have not yet been fully realised. Both speakers broadcast their message by addressing the audience through exhibiting their authority and rhetorical devices.

Both speakers establish authority and credibility for themselves as speakers and for their cause in different ways. Wiesel is authoritative as he has lived through the Holocaust, whereas Clinton is authoritative as she is an active feminist. Wiesel addresses his audience by using personal pronouns to create equality, “I speak to you as a man, who 50 years and nine days ago had no name, no hope, no future and was known only by his number, A7713”. This statistical information shows the formality of the occasion and establishes that being in Auschwitz has influenced his view on humanity. He “has seen what humanity has done to itself by trying to exterminate an entire people and inflict suffering and humiliation and death on so many others.” Wiesel does not specifically identify one group of people for doing this; he influences the audience to understand whole of humanity was responsible for Auschwitz. Contrastingly, Clinton establishes her authority by being female, by being indefatigable, and by speaking to and for women...
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