A Brief Speech Analysis of Shirley Chisholm

1 January 2017

A Brief Speech Analysis of Shirley Chisholm In January 1972, politician Shirley Chisholm announced in front of all Americans her bid to become the Democratic Party candidate for the presidency of the United States of America. A Brooklyn-born black woman with immigrant roots presented a new face and voice in contrast of the era’s status quo. Chisholm had already made history in 1968 as the first black woman elected to Congress. She goes on to have an impact on America with her strong beliefs that it was a new era for change starting with her to pave the path.

Chisholm uses her candidacy for president knowing that she will not win the election but will inspire the motivation of many throughout her speeches. Throughout this essay we will examine the strategies that were used in the documentary to accomplish this task with the following questions: Was the introduction presented well? How was the body of the speech presented? Did the delivery support of the speech? The reviews of these questions give an overall conclusion of the representation of herself, her speeches, and the outcome of her intentions. Was the Introduction Presented Well?

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The introduction is the first impression about the speaker and about the message. These first few moments builds your audience interest, orients the listeners to the speech, and establishes your credibility as a speaker. “ I stand before you today as a candidate for the Democratic nomination for the Presidency of the United States of America. ” Chisholm is clearly introduces the topic of her discussion and her intentions. During this time in American history, the fact that she was a woman in congress and black accomplished the capturing of attention and interest of her audience through this statement.

Chisholm then states, “I am not the candidate of black America, although I am black and proud. I am not the candidate of the women’s movement of this country, although I am a woman, and I am equally proud of that. I am not the candidate of any political bosses or fat cats or special interests. I am the candidate of the people of America. And my presence before you now symbolizes a new era in American political history. ” This statement gives the audience a chance to relate, making her one of the people. Chisholm’s intention is to reach out to all people during her time to make her message stand out.

She is very aware of cultural diversity and uses these lines to bring the people together. The diverse America is striving the American dream of equality which she presents this belief in her speech. During the year of her announcement, many changes were being portrayed by the people. The voting age had just changed from 21 to 18, and millions of new voters were expected at the polls. The Vietnam War was in full swing, as were anti-war protests, a flourishing women’s movement, and the rise of the Black Panther Party. When she states that she is the candidate of the people of America she concludes her thesis statement.

She reaches a common ground by involving the concerns of common ethical values that is experienced in a personal level. Being truthful about her intentions to make a change, and the context of her speech gives her the credibility from all types of audiences. How Was the Body of the Speech Presented? Chisholm accomplishes to explain how she is the candidate of America. The body presented main points and supporting materials to establish the common ground with the people. The main points consist of the potential, the faith in the American dream, and that a leader is one who is receptive to the problems of America.

The supporting materials were interviewers; people who supported her message. This also established more credibility, and gave people a chance to voice their opinion as well. Chisholm uses common ethical values to logically present her speeches. The most ethical value she tried to point out was that judgements on candidates should be based on intelligence, character, competence, integrity, and honesty. Battling and revealing these ethical hurdles that were present in her time, made clear transitions on her discussions.

By tying in women, blacks, minorities, and our right for equality transitioned well into her overall message of picking the right candidate who represents a new era. Did the Delivery Support the Speech? Chisholm seemed to have used notes to help present her speech. It seemed that she referred to her notes quite often, but she did maintain a certain amount of poise throughout the speech. The focus of her message and interest was not lost. Chisholm maintained eye contact with her audience by constantly looking up. Possibly due to the size of the audience, it seemed as though she was talking at the audience.

If there was more personal eye contact, the message could have been more personable to others. Chisholm did maintain the proper body language to help make the speech more effective. The use of hand gestures helped initiate her points, and gave the sense that she was well aware that she was constantly being observed. She used body language to her advantage to portray the image of an educated powerful woman. All hand and head movements were controlled to fit the effect that she wanted her message to portray. The rate of the speech, was clearly rehearsed.

It was the right speed for all listeners to understand, and it gave enough time when she wanted to emphasize certain words, as well as giving the audience enough time to respond to what she was saying. The volume of her speech was also just enough to fit the criteria of a president. It was loud enough for a woman of her time, yet strong enough to give the impression of a woman who is very opinionated and not afraid to share her beliefs. Through this mechanism, it gave her pauses more emphasis, and the fluency with the lack of ‘ums’ and ‘ahs’ made her statements seem even more impressionable.

All the criteria for delivering the speech were to used to her favor. With the practice she put into her speech, and along with her natural talent of public speaking, made her be the impression that she intended to be in our history. Overall, the impact that Shirley Chisholm had on our history remains forever memorable. After the evaluation, it was clear that she was able to maintain the purpose of why she ran for presidency. “In spite of hopeless odds… to demonstrate the sheer will and refusal to accept the status quo. ” Chisholm wanted to portray the message that the power of any dedicated individual can make a difference.

This country belongs to each one of us only if we dare to claim our place in it. Chisholm wanted to be the first to stand out and make a statement about human equality in matters like being black, and being a woman, or a minority. “When I die, I want to be remembered as a woman who lived in the twentieth century and who dared to be a catalyst of change. ” Even after her death, she still make an impact on her audience. Many have followed in her footsteps to dare the dream of an equal opportunity to make a difference. Chisholm reached out by adapting to her audience and sparking the interest of many to life.

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