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Places and forms of power : How could words have an impact on people minds?

Dissertation : Places and forms of power : How could words have an impact on people minds?. Recherche parmi 263 000+ dissertations

Par   •  19 Novembre 2017  •  Dissertation  •  1 043 Mots (5 Pages)  •  554 Vues

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        The notion I’m going to deal with is the notion of places and forms of power. To start with, I’d like to give a definition of the notion :a place can be an important building or institution that represents a certain form of power. A place can also be a country or a state. Power is the ability to control others, events, or resources; the ability to make things happen despite obstacles, resistance, or opposition. I would like to illustrate this notion through the theme of the power of words. Indeed, according to the way we use them, words can have a specific impact on people. To   illustrate these impacts, I chose 3 documents illustrating 3 different ways of using words to fight for a cause : 2 of them are more modern, the first one is a slam by Prince Ea called “Can we auto correct humanity” released in 2014 and the second one is a rap by Macklemore and Ryan Lewis called “Same Love” released in 2012. Both address an audience to convince them, in these cases it is most of the time teenagers by mimicking their way of speaking to be more convincing. The third document is more traditional, it is an abstract from the famous Martin Luther King’s speech, « I have a dream » which he delivered in 1963.  We will ask ourselves the question : How could words have an impact on people minds? To answer this question, we will explore three different intentions of the documents: the first one will be to denounce, then to convince and finally the impact on the audience.


        In all documents presented, the authors will use many hard and tough words. For example, in the rap, Macklemore defend same-sex marriage, and to achieve it, he uses some really tough words, like “hate”, which he repeats several times, “cured with some treatment and religion”, “gay is synonymous with the lesser”, to embody a homophobic person and prove that all these thoughts are completely ridiculous. He also embodies a young boy who thinks he’s gay because “I could draw, my uncle was and I kept my room straight”. Macklemore would like to make people realize on the situation that has set since decades in our society. In the slam, Prince Ea wanted to denounce the omnipresence of Internet in our lives, its danger and by the way transmit his wish to come back to a humanity without electronic devices and social networks. To achieve it, he uses some poetic devices to mean the overpresence of Internet, like alliterations or lexical fields, social networks’ one is the most present in the slam with terms like “Facebook”, “Skype”, 140 characters”, “6 seconds at high speed”… In the speech, MLK wants to denounce African American’s situation in the last century, during the Segregation. This period is a century of strict separation between white and black people in public or private places, and reject of black people from the American society. The baptist minister chose very metaphoric words to illustrate his purpose, like anaphoras (“I have a dream”), metaphors (“table of brotherhood”) or allusions (Negro Spiritual). These poetic devices helped MLK to illustrate his arguments so that his audience can picture what is being said and refer to common references.

        In all documents, the emphasis is put on some words to show their importance, they are more important than the others, to convince their audience. But according to who you want to convince, you will not use the same type of vocabulary and stress on the same words. In the rap and the slam, they mostly address teenagers, so Macklemore and Prince Ea will use their way to speak, to be more convincing. They will use more modern and familiar words, to be sure that they message will be more understandable for teenagers. Also, the fact that these documents are a rap and a slam, make them more touching. Indeed, because they are not sung, it create an impression of a real interaction between the one who speaks and the one who listens. This interaction leads to a reflection from the audience on the purpose of the rap or the slam and helps the author to convince his public. The speech, it, is more formal than the other documents, because, first, it is older also because it is more metaphoric so, it is less fluid than the others, more reflected and pictured than the rap and the slam and because it doesn’t address the same kind of person, the first ones addressed teenagers and the third addresses adults, because children and teenagers could not understand the situation in the USA during Segregation.


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