Ethos, pathos and logos

In his speech at the 2020 Democratic National Convention, Joe Biden appeals to ethos, pathos and logos. 

Table of contents


Biden builds ethos by bringing up the years he served as Vice President of the US: “And speaking of President Obama, a man I was honored to serve alongside for 8 years as Vice President”. Here, Biden reminds the audience of his political background and suggests that he has extensive knowledge of America’s problems. This way, he appears trustworthy and shows the audience that he has political experience.. 

Biden also builds ethos when he describes the legacy of former US president Barack Obama. He associates himself with Obama and gives him thanks for his service, and he also speaks of Obama’s Affordable Care Act :

And the assault on the Affordable Care Act will continue until its destroyed, taking insurance away from more than 20 million people – including more than 15 million people on Medicaid – and getting rid of the protections that President Obama and I passed for people who suffer from a pre-existing condition.

By mentioning the importance of the Affordable Care Act and by associating himself with it, Biden creates ethos and reminds the audience that he was involved in the issue.

Biden also associates himself with Kamala Harris, the nominated Vice President. He calls her “a powerful voice for this nation” and praises her political success: “No one's been tougher on the big banks or the gun lobby. No one's been toughe...

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