Academic Master


Speech by Denzel Washington at the University of Pennsylvania

Rhetoric Analysis

This is a speech by Denzel Washington at the University of Pennsylvania. According to his speech, this was not the first time that he had been to Penn campus as he called it. The sole reason for this speech was to encourage the new graduates as they embarked on their new lives outside of school. He ensured that he fully prepared them for the experience outside campus and how it would treat them. He also encouraged them to always stay on course no matter the number of times that they failed.

In my opinion, this speech was so powerful just by the fact that it was given to a group of new graduates who had yet to experience life as Denzel had. This was crucial as it would prepare them psychologically that things will not always go as they have planned. They should always pick themselves up and try again until they finally make it. Denzel Washington established credibility in his speech by giving facts that strengthened his argument (Shabo, 92). For instance, other than providing personal examples of how he tried and failed severally, he also added on some examples of some famous people like Reggie Jackson who struck out 2600 times in his career but who is remembered for his home runs. He also focused on Thomas Edison who failed 1000 times in his experiments before inventing the light bulb.

Denzel is appealing to the new graduates emotionally by giving them personal stories and creating in them a utopian vision of how harsh life has been to him (Konijn, 8). The primary emotion that he is evoking is sympathy. This speech is quite logical as it was given to graduates who are fresh from school and who are eager to go try out new things.

Work Cited

Shabo, Magedah E. Rhetoric, logic, & argumentation: a guide for student writers. Clayton, DE: Prestwick House, 2010. Print.

Konijn, Elly. Acting emotions: shaping emotions on stage. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 2000. Print.



Calculate Your Order

Standard price





Pop-up Message