An Analysis of Nelson Mandela's Speech

Topics: South Africa Pages: 2 (564 words) Published: March 4, 2016
I am Prepared to Die
Nelson Mandela
Nelson Mandela’s “I am prepared to die” speech, was spoken in South Africa on the 20th of April 1964. Here is a famous extract from the speech: “During my lifetime I have dedicated myself to this struggle of the African people. I have fought against white domination, and I have fought against black domination. I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and to achieve. But if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.”

Explanation of Context of Speech:
Nelson Mandela spoke his “I am prepared to die” speech, when he was sentenced in the Rivonia Trial. Mandela was charged for opposing the White Government of South Africa, charges of sabotage, high treason, and threats to overthrow the South African Government. The purpose of the speech was to stand up for the rights of the Black Africans in South Africa. Nelson Mandela had intended for his speech to appeal to an international audience, to inspire international support for the ANC (African National Congress) Cause.

Key Themes of Speech:
Mandela wrote this speech to stand up for the rights of the Black South Africans, as they could not vote in the referendum in 1960. Mandela explores the idea of racism, in his speech when he stands up for the majority of the Africans, the Black South Africans, due to racism from the White South African population and White South African Government. He also captures the suffering of the Black South Africans, and how they were being harassed, and treated inferior, to the White South Africans. Nelson also explores the freedom of the White South Africans, and compares it to the incarceration of the Black South Africans.

Analysis of Speech:
On April 20th, 1964, Nelson Mandela was taken for court and trialed for numerous accounts of sabotage, high treason, and threats to overthrow the...
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