Tim O Brien Speech Rhetorical Analysis

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Tim O’Brien views heroism much differently than most. His comrades in Vietnam may base a hero upon his accomplishments in war; however, O’Brien’s version of a hero comes in the most casual aspect. O’Brien’s message on heroism communicates the simplicity of wisdom through the rhetorical elements of diction, tone, and ethos. In O’Brien’s acceptance speech, he uses effective diction to describe his hero, Elroy
Birdall. On several occasions he refers to Elroy as being “smart” (O’Brien paragr. 3). As simple as this word may appear, it carries a meaning far beyond. When O’Brien visited Tip Top Lodge in Minnesota, he described Birdall as a man who was fully aware of everything but had few words to say. As a man who loved books and scrabble, he was a role model to O’Brien and …show more content…

Birdall was a wise man to say the least, and O’Brien views him as a here for that reason. O’Brien makes his message clear on heroism that intelligence is a must. During the speech, O’Brien uses a simple tone to describe Birdall’s character. He begins by introducing Elroy as “a tiny shrunken, bald old man in brown pants and a flannel shirt”
(paragr. 3). The simplicity in his tone implies that Birdall was no handsome brute of bravery, but was only an ordinary man. O’Brien goes on to say, “by his presence, his mute watchfulness, he made it real” (paragr. 4). He uses a simple tone to describe a simple man. This definitely makes a large statement on his point of view of a hero: to O’Brien, a hero does not have to be a celebrity or courageous fellow, but instead a casual man with a fishing line on the Rainy River. Heroism is often seen as something that cannot be reached by the common people, but in reality it is right by

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