Rhetorical situation

Table of contents


The speaker of the “We Shall Overcome” speech is Lyndon B. Johnson, the 36th president of the United States. Johnson delivered his speech on March 15, 1965, in Washington, D.C., to the members of Congress. In his speech, Johnson proposes a piece of legislation to protect voting rights and end discrimination in the process of voting: “Wednesday, I will send to Congress a law designed to eliminate illegal barriers to the right to vote”. Throughout his speech, he focuses on the reasons why he believes this legislation is necessary.

Johnson uses his experience as a teacher in a Mexican-American school to argue for his views and to show the audience the importance of passing the voting rights legislation:

And somehow you never forget what poverty and hatred can do when you see its scars on the hopeful face of ...

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