I Have A Dream Speech Analysis

Decent Essays

54 years ago, Martin Luther King Jr delivered his famous “I have a dream speech”, which along with Lincoln’s Gettysburg address are examples of the best oratory works. The two speeches were critical to the growth and development of America. They come from two men from different backgrounds and different times but with one common goal, equality for all.

Standing on the same spot as Lincoln did five score years ago, King preached similar themes of justice, equality and freedom. Lincolns speech was a eulogy to those who died in the battle of Gettysburg, at the time America was at civil war. Lincoln spoke to a crowd of thousands to inspire them to keep fighting the war. In comparison to King, who stood before a crowd of over 200,000 people at the Lincoln memorial and shared his dream of a new future for black Americans. The context of each address has a profound impact upon their purpose and qualities. One distinct quality of Lincolns speech is that it is structured in chronological order, with each of the three separate paragraphs encompassing the past, present and future. This is a device used by Lincoln to build up his audience’s attention to the speeches climatic end. This can be compared to Kings structural approach, where he uses a ladder technique to construct 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! Both methods of structure of the speeches assist in

Get Access