Speeches are an important component of political discourse and an efficient form of communication with the audience. Therefore, politicians of all the periods in human history, no matter what their political platforms and strategies could were, attached particular importance to the speeches they delivered. For a political speech to be effective, politicians need to focus on the ways of making it appealing and convincing to the public, so that its effect could be maximized. The content and manner of delivering a speech, an ability to get feedback from the audience and make a lasting impact on it, the politician’s personality and credibility are the factors that cannot be overlooked or underestimated.
Therefore, the main elements of a good political speech are good knowledge and understanding of the audience, maintaining contact with it, and constructing a story that interests the audience and presents the speaker’s arguments in a convincing manner, by means of using rhetorical strategies.A political speech should be simple enough in its structure, for the audience to follow the speaker’s arguments, and, at the same time, present an interesting story. The theme should be relevant to the audience, with facts and figures illustrating the subject and the politician’s stance; however, without overusing the data, as the audience may find it boring (Townsend).
The rhetoric strategies that have been used since the ancient period work today as effectively as at that time. Ethos, logos and pathos are the main components, which help to achieve a lasting effect. The compelling logic is the best way to present the arguments, with ethos also helping to establish contact with the crowd. An experienced speaker maintains contact and notices any signs showing that the connection is weakening. People’s eyes can be directed toward different things; faces can be turned toward the windows, and the audience may take out cell phones and focus their attention on them (Townsend).
Telling anecdotes related to people’s lives or using metaphors should be the elements of the political speech; these components represent the pathos, another effective rhetoric and communicative strategy. Metaphors are important for entertaining the audience and for constructing images, which can have as strong an impact as the logical part of the speech based on facts and statistics. The combination of these different elements makes the speech diverse and appealing. It also demonstrated the speaker’s individuality and creativity, the features important for any politician. As pointed out by experts studying political discourse, “political speeches are… [a] domain of creativity within politics. Even if speeches are essentially a spoken genre… they may share several features with literary or creative texts” (Müller 53).
In addition, the use of metaphors is a convenient way of introducing specific issues into a political debate. Creative metaphors have complex, multifaceted meaning, which can be interpreted and discussed in different ways by politicians and the public (Müller 59). They make a political speech remembered and discussed, which is an ingredient of its success. The standing ovation the speaker receives is also an acknowledgement …