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Communication - Essay Example

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Speech is the primary means of communication that the leaders keep in order to keep up with their constituents. Speech is also the means for the leaders to…
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Communication
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Your Speech Styles and Modern Leaders For leaders, speech, as in rhetoric, is one of the most powerful tools they can ever have (if not the most powerful). Speech is the primary means of communication that the leaders keep in order to keep up with their constituents. Speech is also the means for the leaders to communicate their goals and aspirations for their people. It can change the minds of the population; speech can even change the future.
Good leaders use speech to their advantage. They understand the power that the rhetoric holds, so they harness it to fuel their political interests. The saying that “great leaders are usually great speakers” proves true for their personalities.
Adolf Hitler, Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama are these leaders. Their speeches inspired people, moved people and united their nations, both for good and bad reasons. This paper will examine the speech styles of the three leaders as they accept their wins in their respective national elections.
Adolf Hitler is a very passionate man, and it is evident in his speeches. His acceptance speech is quite moving, and as a non-German speaker, I even find myself nodding to his speech. Although we know how Hitler was tyrannical, listening to his speech is totally a different experience. His speech is very inspiring and hopeful. It gives the audience a sense of power and strength when they hear Hitler’s acceptance speech. They can identify with him because of the passion that’s evident in the manner of Hitler’s delivery. Hitler’s speech, as some people put it, comes straight from the heart and people sense this sincerity. This makes them believe his words. Hitler’s stance may be very aggressive and antagonistic but his speech inspires a sense of triumph on their part because of the strength that he gives the words he speaks. Hitler discredits his enemies too and gives quite logical explanations for his actions, making people believe that he is doing something that’s actually going to make Germany power to be reckoned with.
Another leader that’s quite famous for his speech is Ronald Reagan. He is one of the most endeared Republicans, and it is not a secret that even hard core Democrats voted for him. His speech is largely to be credited for that. Unlike Hitler, Reagan’s speech style is more docile, but like Hitler’s, it is hopeful and antagonistic. The antagonistic part can be later seen in his later speeches (take note of the famous Reagan-words like “evil empire”) but then this facet of him as a speaker is also attributed to his honesty. He is named as the great communicator because, like Hitler, people saw him as an honest man, saying things that they want to say to the government. There were no facades, but at the end of the day he was a respectable and affable man like the characters he played in his movies. He appealed to the people because he assured them of a better and productive government, replete with his charming personality.
Barack Obama is the latest president to be dubbed as one of the greatest speakers. His speeches are marked with “cadences” and they are quite lyrical. Like the two previous leaders, his inaugural speech is hopeful, which is appropriate since his government is quite low on resources. Unlike the previous speeches, his speech is not antagonistic; in fact, it only focused on America (not her enemies) and change. Common people, freedom and courage are also some of the major themes of Obama’s inaugural speech. It is hopeful, it talks about change and courage. It brings forth an emotion that all his listeners can be, in fact, heroes.
A good speech should appeal to logic, emotions and ethics. By all means, all the inaugural speeches are logical and ethical. However, it is the emotions that the speech-writers play up the most. All of them appeal to the audience’s emotions. In Hitler’s case, he uses his people’s emotion against their enemies as he says that they are persecuting him as a socialist. Reagan uses his charming personality as a Hollywood actor to convince people that he is sincere. Obama is using the audience’s cynicism as a jump-off point for his optimistic speeches.
Their speeches might be different in terms of the words and delivery, but they are basically the same. They are wooing the public and they achieved it. They knew what the public needed at the time they were going to give the speeches, and played upon it by letting their hearts speak what the facts have to offer.
References:
1932 Adolf Hitler Acceptance Speech [Video]. 1932. Retrieved October 16, 2011, from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KqBEJweLV5s&feature=related.
Election Night 1980 from CBS part 2 of 3 [Video]. 1980. Retrieved October 16, 2011, from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pKdSkYYZ-MY
President-Elect Barack Obama in Chicago. [Video]. 2008. Retrieved October 17, 2011, from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jll5baCAaQU Read More
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