ASSESSMENT ITEM 3
Item 3: Reflective Essay
Due Date: Monday of Week 10
Length: 1000 Words
Choose one of the pieces of public writing supplied in Readings Dossier (a Senate inquiry
submission, a speech, an opinion piece or other) and write an essay critically evaluating the
piece from two perspectives: 1. The quality of the piece as a professional communication in
terms of audience appeal, persuasiveness, research, brevity and concise writing, message
delivery, call to action, language and tone. 2. Assess the public value of the piece. What
overall good or bad contribution to public life could or would this piece of public writing
make? Locate your argument within the unit theoretical framework and reference.
“I Have Been to the Mountain Top” is one of the renowned speeches by the American civil rights activist, Martin Luther King. This speech became a global reference for redemption not because it was delivered by renowned civil rights activities, but because of its content. This study will analyse the professional aspects of the speech and why it became important part of activism.
This remains one of the most persuasive speeches ever. At the moment he gave this speech, it was evident that it was going to be an important part of his struggle, and he use different rhetorical tools to appeal to his audience. He used pathos, logos, and ethos, which make the speech not only appealing, but also very persuasive. The main aim of this speech is to show compassion, and he employs ethos to that end. When he says, “God has commanded us to be concerned about the slums down here and His children who can’t eat three square meals a day” (21.7), he is showing compassion with the striking workers. He empathises with the workers for their plight using the case of Mr Johnson who has worked for the last five years without missing a single day’s work, but his family still struggles to get enough food. He further employed ethos-based strategies when he used a religious analogy of Jesus.