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THE CIVIL RIGHTS ADDRESS"

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by

Simar Kaur

on 23 October 2013

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Transcript of THE CIVIL RIGHTS ADDRESS"

THE CIVIL RIGHTS ADDRESS - JFK
RHETORICAL DEVICES
Rhetorical Appeals

The Civil Rights Speech was delivered on radio and television by U.S. President John F. Kennedy from the Oval Office on June 11, 1963 in which he proposed the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
Historical Background
Purpose of Speech
The speech was in response to the U.S. National Guard being sent to protect two African American students Vivian Malone and James Hood, enrolling at the University of Alabama, towards whom threats and defiant statements were made due to their race. In his speech, Kennedy asked Americans to recognize civil rights as a moral cause that all people need to contribute to.
Anaphora
Anaphora is the repetition of the same word or group of words at the beginnings of successive phrases.
"
It ought to be possible
, therefore, for american students of any color to attend any public institution they select without having to be backed up by troops.
It ought to be possible
for american consumers of any color to receive equal service in places of public accommodation...
It ought to be possible
, in short, for every American to enjoy the privileges of being American without regard to his race or color.
This is anaphora because the repetition of the highlighted phrase establishes a marked change in rhythm. Kennedy's purpose in using this device was to produce a strong emotional effect in the hearts of each and every American listening to his speech.
Epistrophe
Epistrophe is the repetition of the same word or group of words at the end of successive phrases.
"In short, every American ought to have the right
to be treated
as he would wish
to be treated
, as one would wish his children
to be treated
."
This is an example of epistrophe because the repetition at the end of each clause creates a strong emphasis on meaning of the word. The purpose of the use of this device is to make the people realize the importance of treating others with equality.
Alliteration
Alliteration is the repetition of initial or medial consonants in two or more adjacent words.
"The Negro
baby born
in America today, regardless of the section of the state in which he is born, has about one-half as much chance of completing a high school as a white
baby born
in the same place on the same day..."
This is an example of alliteration because "baby born" is repeating the initial consonants. The purpose of this is to provide emphasis.

Rhetorical Devices
Asyndeton
Asyndeton is the deliberate omission of conjunctions between a series of words, phrases, or clauses.
"If an American
,
because his skin is dark
,
cannot eat lunch in a restaurant open to the public
,
if he cannot send his children to the best public school available
,
if he cannot vote for the public officials who will represent him
,
if
,
in short
,
he cannot enjoy the full and free life which all of us want
,
then who among us would be content to have the color of his skin changed and in his place today?
The use of comas in this phrase is an example of asyndeton. The comas create a punctuated rhythm and emphasize each clause.
Rhetorical Question
Rhetorical question is asking a question in which the answer is not required.
"Who among us would then be content with the counsels of patience and delay?"
This is an example of rhetorical question because the question is not demanding an answer. Kennedy's purpose of using this was to make american think about the inequality faced by African Americans.
LOGOS
Logos is using facts and statistics in order to persuade.
" This afternoon, following a series of threats and defiant statements, the presence of Alabama National Guardsmen was required on the University of Alabama to carry out the final and unequivocal order of the United States District Court of the Northern District of Alabama.
This is an example of logos because Kennedy is talking about a specific event which occurred in that frame of time making it a fact.
Pathos
Pathos is appealing to the emotions
"This Nation was founded by men of many nations and backgrounds. It was founded on the principle that all men are created equal, and that the rights of every man are diminished when the rights of one man are threatened."
Kennedy uses emotions to persuade people that we should all live together as a united nation even though we all came from different cultures and backgrounds.
ETHOS
Ethos uses the credibility of the writer.
"One hundred years of delay have passed since President Lincoln freed the slaves, yet their heirs, their grandsons, are not fully free."
This is an example of ethos because Kennedy uses Lincolns credibility to make the nation realize that African Americans deserve equal rights.
Pathos
Pathos is using emotions.
"This Nation was founded by men of many nations and backgrounds.It was founded on the principle that all men are created equal, and that the rights of every man are diminished when the rights of one man are threatened."
Kennedy uses emotions to persuade people in believing that we should all live together as a united nation even though we all came from different cultures and backgrounds.
BY: Simarpreet Kaur
Full transcript