Robert F Kennedy Speech Analysis Essay

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On April 4, 1968, Robert F. Kennedy was in Indianapolis for a campaign stop, when he received news that Martin Luther King was killed, causing Kennedy to write and deliver a speech regarding the assassination. This speech was succinct but not only was it about the assassination, it was also to tell the people there is still wisdom and hope in this time of turmoil. To reach this purpose, he first builds up his ethos, uses pathos to add mood and hope, and unifies the people. The combination of these elements makes it a very powerful and memorable speech. Robert F. Kennedy builds his credibility by relating his personal experience and knowledge of what the audience is feeling to the current events. In paragraph 4, Robert F. Kennedy states, “I had a member of my family killed, but he was killed by a white man.” This is an allusion to the assassination of his brother John F. Kennedy in 1963 by Lee Harvey Oswald, a white man. Robert Kennedy uses this allusion in showing that he has personally experienced what the audience is feeling at the …show more content…

In the first paragraph, he repeats the phrase “sad news.” Most of the people in the audience does not know Martin Luther King was killed. Kennedy repeats “sad news” in order to prepare the audience for the news he is about to deliver. This is very effective as if he had not done that, there would be more shock and outrage. Another way Robert Kennedy appeals to pathos is the repetition of “prayer for.” This is when he asks the audience for a prayer for King’s family, America, and so on. A prayer is usually a sign of hope. With this, Kennedy is easing the people’s mood because he is pointing out in these bad times, there is still hope. This is very effective as it is helping to calm the audience’s shock and maybe anger. Therefore, using repetition for both getting the audience ready for the tragic news and giving them hope helps in establishing the

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