The analysis of Nelson Mandela’s inaugural speech in the following pages is based on the rhetorical pentagram model.

We examine the topics of the speech – freedom, change, equality, and discrimination in the context of the first democratic elections in South Africa, following the end of the apartheid regime.

We present the speaker – Nelson Mandela – considering his political background and the image he conveys with the speech.

We look at the audience of the speech, formed by South Africans and international political leaders, focusing on categories of the public that the speaker addresses directly.

We discuss the language used by the speaker, looking at how the choice of words, rhetorical devices, and modes of persuasion make Mandela’s arguments and message more appealing to the audience.

We explore the circumstances of the speech, giving you an overview of the apartheid regime and the 1994 South African elections.

We detail the speaker’s intentions with the speech - namely motivating and inspiring the audience while promoting unity and equality.