A Comparison of Dr. King's I Have a Dream Speech and Mandela's Glory and Hope Speech

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I Have a Dream and Glory and Hope were two speeches given, respectively, by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Nelson Mandela at times of great need; at times when ignorance and racially-based hubris intertwined themselves in the sparse gaps of human understanding. At first glance, the facets of humanity and blanket tranquillity seem to be in natural accord. Philosophers have struggled with the reason behind the absolute absence of peace as everybody, by definitions both classical and modern, longs for peace; conflict arrives from the disagreement on how to obtain it. The speeches I Have a Dream are similar both linguistically and structurally in that both speakers apply strong emotional appeal to support their propositions of freedom, …show more content…
The use of repetition of phrases in order to give more meaning to what is being said is used throughout the inauguration speech of Nelson Mandela as well. By way of illustration, Nelson Mandela concludes his address with the phrases, ‘Let there be justice for all. Let there be peace for all. Let there be work, bread, water and salt for all…’ Not only does such a concise list of ultimatums show his efficiency as a leader, but it also exhibits his linguistic brilliance and ability to end a speech both effectually and eloquently.
Evoking arguments of literacy and historicity covertly is a powerful speechwriting technique. Within both speeches, numerous geographical and historical allusions are made to develop the credibility of the particular speaker. Personal appeal creates a strong introspective bond with the listener, appealing directly to his or her psyche and creating the illusion that their individual struggle is being addressed regardless of how general the analogy made was. One of the most recognisable and abrupt instances of this strategy lies within King’s speech when he almost immediately commends Abraham Lincoln, and what contributions he believes Lincoln made to the Civil Rights movement. He recalls “Four score and seven years ago…” of the Gettysburg Address, a reference that is powerfully perturbing considering that the setting speech
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