The Voice of a Feminist: Rhetorical Analysis Essay

1287 Words Jul 9th, 2014 6 Pages
The Voice of a Feminist: Rhetorical Analysis of “Claiming an Education”
“All I have, is a voice.” –W.H. Auden. These are five words that could leave a thoughtful philosopher speechless. But perhaps found within the lack of “finding a better word” moments, are when revolution seeds are planted in the hearts and tongues of the passionate. And if this is a truth, then Adrienne Rich was absolutely no exception. The radical feminist and poet opened her speech, “Claiming an Education” to the girls of Douglass College, in the most straightforward way as possible. In skimming the text, only the reader can imagine what was really communicated in the zeal and urgency behind her rehearsed words that day in 1977. Therefore, in light of under
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Such a movement involved the American women to band together, raising an awareness of protecting women in pay, position, and anti-discrimination laws, which became as powerful as a women elevating herself to the arena of a soap box (Tavaana, “The 1960s-70s American Feminist Movement”). In the brief age of revolution, the nation also began to see the importance of women studies in high education institutions (Elfman, “A ‘Second Wave of Feminism’”). In the text, Rich divulges in her views on civil rights, emphasizing on her bias view on women suffrage in education, but rationalizes it with social currency: “...You, the women students here, and… us, who teach in a women’s college [are two parts of education]. But ultimately those two parts are indivisible… Less than a decade ago, with the rebirth of a feminist movement in this country, women students and teachers in a number of universities began to demand and set up women’s studies courses – to claim a women-directed education (Rich, 220, 221).” Whether it was intentional or not, Rich’s use of the word “indivisible” when describing the bond of female student and teachers (with no gender specific aim), was utterly relevant to say the least. Any US citizen hearing the speech, then and now, could recognize the correlation of the verbiage used in “Claiming an Education” as well as in the official Pledge of Allegiance. Rich was calling attention to not only the participation of national academia

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