Speech 1

Feb 28

Prepared Speech

the first of two this semester
Due: by midnight Sun, Feb 28. Post your script in the comments below. If you have slides (see below), post your slides as a .pdf file (John S slides.pdf) in a comment replying to the comment with your script.

Compose a speech on a pressing political issue. Some options:

  • Black Lives Matter
  • #MeToo
  • Immigration
  • North Korea
  • Global Warming
  • Gun Control
  • The Second Impeachment of President Trump
  • "Cancel Culture"
  • China: nation and diaspora
  • something else of your choosing


  • 500-600 words, about 4 minutes duration.
  • Speeches to be delivered the following week.
  • Text of your speech due midnight on the evening of Sun, Feb 28, turned in as a pdf via the comments, below.
  • Uploaded .pdf should include the following:
    • The speech itself.
    • A bullet-point list of the choices you made in response to the “Important Considerations” listed below (Aim, Invention, Disposition, Style, Memory, Delivery), ONE sentence each.
    • MLA in-text citations, together with a list of Works Cited.
    • Up to three slides/images you plan to use during your presentation.

Important Considerations:

Aim: What are you trying to accomplish with this speech? Is it your goal to persuade opponents, to rally supporters, or to offer insight? These are different aims and they call for different approaches. Feel free to embellish with a fictional scenario: you’re giving a TED talk, or you’re speaking at the opening of a factory on the US/Mexico border.

Invention: consider what persuasive materials you can bring to bear: metaphor/analogy, evidence/anecdote, logic/argument.

Disposition: consider how to arrange these elements for dramatic effect. Note that there are different kinds of drama: a moment of discovery, a clash of perspectives, etc.

Style: big words or small? intellectual or earthy? rhythmic or prosaic? Why?

Memory: will you read your speech, deliver from notes, or entirely from memory?

Delivery: consider how you can vary your speed and volume to reflect the dramatical structure you worked out earlier. Practice delivering the speech 5 times: four times the day before and once on the day you’re scheduled to deliver.

56 responses to “Speech 1

    • I forgot to put my bullet points….
      Aim: A warning to the American people both Democrats and Republics of the danger of not standing up for democracy.
      Invention: metaphors, repetition
      Disposition: discuss the past then the future
      Style: small words, rhythmic
      Memory: I will read my speech.
      Delivery: I will change my tone as I speak.

  1. Aim: Get the people who disagree with defunding the police to see that reforms aren’t enough and understand the true definition of defunding the police.
    Invention: I use the metaphor of police reform as a bandaid for the problems in the police system.
    Disposition: I have arranged for this so there to be a history of police and the reforms that have not worked and then how defund the police works.
    Style: Rhythmic because I have some repetition and callbacks.
    Memory: I think I will read my speech but still give eye contact and stuff.

  2. Attachment  Speech-Harry.pdf

    .Bullet points
    Aim: To persuade stricter gun control is necessary by informing people of some insight of what gun control can bring us

    Invention: evidence-based logic.

    Disposition: From what’s the most obvious (reduce shooters) to a deeper insight (alleviate police violence).

    Style: small, intellectual, prosaic words because my aim is to persuade by informing.

    Memory: I may read my speech.

    Delivery:I will have focus and change speed and tones during the speech.

  3. Aim: There is an urgent need to either promot more restricted gun control policies or banning the use of guns.
    Invention: evidence-based
    Disposition: from a “counter-argument” to examples to arguments.
    Style: unformal
    Memory: I will read my speech

  4. Aim: My goal is to persuade the audience that climate change is real and show effective ways to reduce the effects of it.
    Invention: I use an idiom, evidence, and logic to build my argument.
    Disposition: I refute the claim that climate change is a hoax by providing evidence, then proceed to show ways we can tackle climate change.
    Style: I use a mixture of slightly big words and small words, maintaining a conversational tone.
    Memory: I will read from my speech, but I will change the speed and tone of my speaking, while also maintaining eye contact with the audience.

  5. Aim: To bring attention to the dangerous division in our country, as well as the hypocrisy that comes from the government, and the need to rebuild and root out the deeply imbedded systemic racism in America.
    Invention: evidence-based.
    Disposition: introduce the concept of BLM and why it is so important, present example of hypocrisy from other side, close with call to action.
    Style: small but meaningful words in order to be more casual while still bringing much needed attention to the serious topic.
    Memory: I will read my speech.
    Delivery: I will change my tone throughout the speech.

  6. Aim: My aim for my speech is to explain why gun control is necessary and draw upon sources to use as evidence to show this. My goal is to persuade opponents on the issue who so readily stand by the second amendment.
    Invention: Mostly evidence-based to develop my argument and make it convincing
    Disposition: Explain why not addressing gun control will continue to be an issue and refer to The article ‘Why Gun Control is Not the Answer, and What We Can Do to Stop Gun Violence’, by Clayton Perry
    Style: Use simple and effective language to powerfully convey and communicate my argument
    Memory: I will mix from using a script and also from memory when delivering my speech
    Delivery: Change my tone and speed when speaking throughout my speech

  7. Aim: The goal of this speech is to explain the day-to-day dangers of being a woman, with regards to sexual harassment and sexual assault, especially on a college campus
    Invention: Lots of statistics and an “imagine if” scenario that walks listeners through the day-to-day things that women face
    Disposition: Starting the speech off with statistics and then making it more personal to us and to BU
    Style: A blend of intellectual and causal, because I want to be armed with facts but I want this to feel conversational
    Memory: I hope to have it somewhat memorized, with notes at my disposal if I need them
    Delivery: I plan on changing my tone and my volume throughout to best match the material

  8. Aim: A Ted Talk aimed at trying to persuade people to oppose standardized tests.
    Invention: mostly logos, ethos, pathos, minor analogies, asyndeton, and repetitive rhyming
    Disposition: Give brief history, mention original purpose, destroy this concept with personal experience, analyse it for large group, call to action
    Style: Mostly small words, intellectual and prosaic
    Memory: I will try my best to memorize, may need to look at script if unsuccessful for ques
    Delivery: keep mostly medium volume and pace, speed up for anxious part, create dramatic pauses at some points

  9. Aim: To persuade people to rethink their stance on gun control and ultimately see that eradicating guns from civilians is not the answer to solving this nation’s battle with gun violence. Rather, it is to regulate the people who can possess guns. …

  10. Aim: to educate others on global warming and encourage them to act.
    Invention: repetition and logic
    Disposition: Describe global warming and its effects, state and refute opposition, provide options and encouragement to act on this issue
    Style: intellectual
    Memory: Partially memorize, partially read from my script
    Delivery: I will try to focus on speaking slowly and changing my tone

  11. Aim: More TED talk style: To spark conversation and offer insight.
    Invention: Logos, Pathos, references to culture, rhetorical questions.
    Disposition: Starting with more background a gradually getting more intense. Mild humor mixed in.
    Style: Small, conversation-style words; easy to digest.
    Memory: Will be read.
    Delivery: Tone changes, spoken almost with a swinging speed.

  12. Aim: The aim of my speech is to offer insight on various aspects of the MeToo movement, and to propose a solution to the problems the movement has created.
    Invention: The persuasive tools used in my speech are mainly evidence and argument.
    Disposition: My essay begins by tracing the origins of the MeToo movement, then delving into the issues surrounding it, and finally offering a solution.
    Style: I aim to use smaller, easy-to-speak words interspersed with more intellectual language, as this helps ensure not only that I have a smooth delivery of the speech, but that the academic language helps to establish credibility with the audience.
    Memory: I intend on delivering my speech entirely from memory; however, I will also bring with me some note cards as a form of backup if need be.
    Delivery: I plan to start my speech somewhat slower than normal, and at the points of my argument, emphasize the most important parts and change my tone to reflect the situation.

  13. Aim: The purpose of this speech is to urge those who are already aware of climate change to live more sustainably.
    Invention: I will use a blend of persuasive elements, primarily evidence, anecdotes, and logic.
    Disposition: I am acknowledging the issue of climate change, explaining how humans cause it, and suggesting what an individual can do to lower their carbon footprint.
    Style: In this speech I am taking a more simple, down to earth approach so the audience easily understands.
    Memory: I will read from the page but hopefully very little so it feels more like a conversation.
    Delivery: The tone at the beginning of this presentation will be serious and transition to more of a rally or call to action.

  14. Aim: I want to inform the audience of the dangers of misinformation being spread on seemingly reputable websites, and how it can have major consequences on things like elections and social introspection.
    Invention: I intend to stick mostly to logic and evidence for the majority of this speech.
    Disposition: I think I’ll present the idea of misinformation having big effects on our society at first and then show the present effects of it later on to show that this is not just a theoretical example.
    Style: I think using intellectual words will work best, but not words that are trying too hard to sound smart, just whatever works with the argument.
    Memory: I am going early on Tuesday, so I’ll likely read my speech off the paper because I think reading off it will allow me to focus on my delivery rather than worry about whether I memorized it or not.
    Delivery: I’ll present the speech in an analytical manner because the topic is not something super emotional, I don’t think attempting to appeal to emotion with the tone of my voice would add much.

  15. Aim – I hope to convince supporters of climate change reform to take action.

    Invention – I used some evidence mixed with logical reasoning at the start, then metaphor and repetition at the end.

    Disposition – I start by focusing on climate change inaction and despair, and then transition to hope and what can be done.

    Style – To emphasize concern and the seriousness of the issue, I start by using more academic style writing, and by the end of the speech, I implement rhythm as a way of hammering my point home.

    Memory – I hope to be mostly memorized so as to minimize the need to look down at my speech as I perform, though I probably won’t have it entirely memorized.

    Delivery – I intend to vary my speed and volume whenever appropriate, but in general I expect to slow down for the first half and build up volume and speed towards the end.

  16. Aim: Speech given to people at some sort of event like a rally or a service event to inspire young people to make a change. My goal is to have the listener walk away with a deeper understand of a huge issue that is effecting people in their community right now.
    Invention: Logicical argument explaining what is fundamentally wrong with our police system
    Disposition: Logical, plays to pathos with personal story
    Style: Geared towards everyday reader
    Memory: Speech given via script on podium
    Delivery: Various speeds and volumes to emphasize important and ridiculous points.

  17. Attachment  speech-1.pdf

    Aim: My aim of this speech is to persuade people that listening to the NRA is a bad idea
    because the NRA is a biased unreliable source when talking about gun control.
    Invention: I will use anecdotes and examples to articulate why the NRA’s argument is unreliable.
    Disposition: make a comparison between NRA and other sources
    Style: earthy and straight-forward
    Memory: entirely from memory but I will take notes with me just in case
    Delivery: I will try to do it fluently

  18. Aim: Goal is to rally supporters/ call to attention the ethical problems with the current criminal justice system and the rising mass incarceration rates in the U.S. Goal is also to provide insight on current effective reform efforts being made. I can see myself giving this speech in front of the capitol building or on the steps of a state court house. Relies on an emotional response backed by statistics.

    Invention: Analogies – dog pound, mule, etc.
    Repetition/ Anaphora – “2.3 million people”, “since…”, “For too long…”, “give us hope”, etc. Creates emphasis. Logos & Ethos: Statistics and factual information, Fordham Journal provides trust in reliable sources, etc. Pathos: punctuation dramatizes the speech, talking about suffering, emotional appeal to lawmakers that it’s in their hands, calling to action etc. Rhetorical questioning.

    Disposition: Start off overwhelming and accusatory. Provide examples of policies that worsen incarceration rates/ show flaws in the system. Change of tone – “there is a better way”, hopeful tone, ending with expectations that demand recognition. Clash of perspectives – provide examples of the good people are doing to reform criminals and the current system.

    Style: Both small and big words depending on the time of delivery
    Word choice: sinful, unlawful, shameful v.s. Hope, worthiness, etc.
    Goes from prosaic to moments of rhythm and repetition. Similar to MLK delivery. I tried to stagger moments of prose between poetic, repetitive song-like moments to appeal to both logic and emotion.

    Memory: I will be reading off of note cards but I’m trying to have it fully memorized

    Delivery: I will emphasize important moments such as the statistics of how many incarcerated people there are, the reception of words like “since”, “too long”, “hope”, etc. I will emphasize the end of my speech to signify the weight on citizens and policy makers’ shoulders.

  19. Aim: My aim is to inform and persuade my audience to take action on preventing murders from a young age.
    Invention: Statistics, emotion, facts, logic.
    Disposition: Start off with a tragic story for people to reflect on, then shifting away from talking about the death penalty to how to prevent children from becoming murderers.
    Style: Small words for better understanding.
    Memory: Mostly from reading the script.
    Delivery: I will be practicing my speech a lot and make sure it sounds good through Zoom.

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