1258 words - 6 pages

How does the use of specific rhetorical devices during speeches affect the audience? It
appeals to people’s preference regardless if they prefer to appeal to ethics, logics or emotions.
For example, Mary Fisher was a woman activist who acquired AIDS, and was in favor of people
understanding how rapidly the rates of infection were increasing. She was also in favor of people
being compassionate to one and other. In fact, on August 19, 1992, Mary Fisher delivered the
“A Whisper of AIDS” speech to the Republican National Convention in Houston ,Texas in order
to spread awareness about AIDS. Similarly, another speaker that used rhetorical appeals to
convey her message was J.K. Rowling, the author of Harry Potter books delivered “The Fringe
of Failure, and the Importance of Imagination” speech to Harvard students on June 5th, 2008.
She focused on making an everlasting impression on the current Harvard graduates to have them
question their morals and integrity. Both Mary Fisher and J.K. Rowling use pathos as a rhetorical
appeal in order to effectively convey their messages across to their audience. However, Mary
Fisher’s use of logos appealed to her audience so that they could understand that acquiring AIDS
was not dependent on somebodies gender, sexuality, or race. On the other hand, J.K. Rowling’s
use of rhetorical questions provoked thoughtful reflection from her audience..
Both Mary Fisher and J.K. Rowling used pathos to express to their audience that
everybody deserves compassion regardless of their circumstances. For instance, Mary Fisher
used pathos when she spoke about AIDS and how it does not depend on what sexuality, gender,
or race, because people can still get infected. She suggested that people take precautions and be
fully informed. In fact Mary Fisher is one of millions of Americans infected with AIDS. She
expresses how people affected by AIDS should not feel ashamed, due to people judgement. She also advises people to not be silent nor judgmental about aids, but to speak out and show
compassion for people with AIDS She states, “Each of them is exactly what God made: a person.
Not evil, deserving of our judgment; not victims, longing for our pity. People. Ready for support
and worthy of compassion” (Fisher, 1992). This is an example of how Mary Fisher used pathos
as she explains how she herself acquired AIDS which appeals to people who are suffering
emotionally from the same diagnosis as her. She not only opens a window for people to openly
discuss having AIDS without being ashamed, but she also wants to help remove the stigma that
follows AIDS. Lastly, Mary Fisher’s use of pathos was effective because she touched her
audience on a personal level. She had first-hand experience and delivered first-hand advice.
Similarly, J.K. Rowling’s use of pathos was on Mary Fisher’s level because they both use
personal experience when conveying their message. In J.K. Rowling’s speech to the Harvard
graduates In J.K. Rowling’s...

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