Class President Speech

This is a video of a Denison student’s speech during his high school’s presidential election. This video, although small scale, has gathered over 11,000 views on youtube. Therefore, it lead me to consider the ways in which this speech appeals to people. This speech can be considered successful public address because of the way the speaker engages the audience and uses humor. The speaker also uses hyperbole in the context of topical issues to make light of serious issues. Although the speaker does not treat the speaking opportunity with the upmost seriousness, his casual and humorous address humanizes him and makes him more a part of the student body than someone wishing to be elevated by this position. This speech also shows how in establishing exigency and ethos, it can be a good strategy to present yourself as being just like every one else in the audience. Instead of speaking from an elevated point of view, the speaker distances himself from the serious canidates by using sarcasm and irony. The speaker actually ended up being elected class president by his peers after this speech. However, the administration would not let him serve. This result also shows the ways in which audience appeal does not necessarily mean success for a speaker’s cause.

Caroline Spence


1 comment so far

  1. jenniferephillips on


    This is a really interesting speech. I think the audience plays a large role in this speech. As this speaker is addressing such an immature audience, the use of humor is accepted and celebrated. However, if this speech was addressing a difference audience, even on a college campus this would not be as accepted. Also, I think in this specific case, the content of the speech is more important than the delivery. Although this speech wasn’t delivered too well, the content was humorous enough to surpass any speaking mishaps.

    Jen Phillips

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