How to define a political speech? A challenging task indeed as such a speech may not be easily classified. To examine the rationale or purpose of the speech would be a good place to start. A political speech may be a powerful vehicle used to effect change, inspiring and arousing feelings of great passion, motivating individuals to fight for a cause, to unite in a common purpose. A memorable speech lives on in the hearts and minds long after it has been delivered . Two speeches which altered the course of history were “ I have a dream” by Martin Luther King and “We shall fight on the beaches” by Winston Churchill.
Martin Luther King delivered his most famous speech in 1963, on the Lincoln Memorial Steps to over 200,000 avid listeners as well as a national television audience. This speech was delivered in a climate of political unrest during a year of instability and violence with ever increasing racial tensions. The civil rights movement was gathering momentum and the purpose of the speech was to gain support for this cause. Abraham Lincoln had freed the black slaves over a hundred years ago - so the location was very symbolic.
In terms of delivery, it was, in the end, a moving and inspirationally powerful speech, boosting the morale of the British army, but in terms of vocal skill specifically, Churchill was born with speech impairment, so the tone might not have been its full potential of strength. Nonetheless, it is amazing how despite Churchill’s speech impairment, he was still able to give one of the most inspirational speeches of all time.
To inspire the crowd, king utilized the delivery style of the black folk pulpit. This vocal style of call and response had been finely honed to accomplish exactly what king had in mind for “Dream” connecting with the crowd, stirring their emotions and confirming their belief in the cause. he began his speech slowly and calmly before slowly starts to build up his passion and emotion and by the time he reaches...
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