Rhetorical Analysis Of Steve Jobs Speech

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Graduation by a Dropout The keynote speaker of the evening approached the microphone to address the 114th graduating class of Stanford University. He was ready to give the soon-to-be graduates advice for their transition into the real world for when they will inevitably face hardships. Not only was this speaker one of the most famous entrepreneurs in recent history, but he was one who dealt with countless roadblocks during the course of his life. Some of the brightest students in the world were anxiously staring up at Mr. Steve Jobs, the notable founder of Apple and Pixar Animation. Little did anyone know that this fifteen minute speech would build on Steve Jobs’s legacy and be heard by millions world-wide. The speech entitled “How to Live Before you Die,” written in 2005 by Steven Paul Jobs, successfully conveys an inspirational message of encouragement through Job’s utilization of pathos by narrating sorrowful and arduous steps of his life, ethos by expounding on his different entrepreneurial endeavors to date, and logos by practically chatting with the rhetorical audience about death and the inevitable misfortune some will face during their pursuit of success. Steve Jobs’s commencement speech was primarily directed toward inspiring the Stanford graduates to follow their dreams once they go out into the real world, no matter what way life takes them. He looks to guide his primary audience with him “[wanting] to tell [them] three stories from [his] life”, which look to teach them lessons about starting up, love/loss, and death. Besides the primary audience, the orator also gears his speech towards the entrepreneurs out there with improbable visions just by explaining multiple instances where he “didn’t know what to do”, but how he bounced back and his life got “better and better” later on. Furthermore, with the millennial generation in mind, Jobs purposely incorporates jokes like how “Windows copied the Mac” and how he was “very publically out” of his own company to appeal to those who had seen these controversial snip bits on the news from time to time. With twenty-seven million views on this speech to date, Steve Jobs conveyed his exigence to countless numbers of rhetorical audiences who sympathized with
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