The main purpose of this presentation is to convince the audience that literacy is one of the skills that a person can and should develop. Moreover, an individual should not become despondent, if he/she has to confront some difficulties. This is the main message that is conveyed to the audience.


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Moreover, it is aimed at increasing people’s awareness about the problem of illiteracy and its influence on the experiences of individuals who have to face this difficulty. This video clip can be of great interest to viewers who may have various cultural or educational backgrounds. Yet, it can be particularly relevant to individuals who attempt to develop his literacy skills.

The author skillfully achieves this goal by adopting various rhetorical techniques. First of all, she relies on ethos and lays stress on her credibility. It should be noted that the speaker presents a personal narrative which describes the difficulties that she faced due to lack of literary skills.

Moreover, this narrative shows how the speaker was able to overcome her difficulties and achieve success (“My struggle for literacy in America”). In this way, the author demonstrates that she is knowledgeable enough to discuss this topic. Additionally, the author makes use of pathos or emotional appeal. It should be mentioned that this presentation tells the story of a girl, who becomes despondent because of academic failures.

In this way, the author makes the audience empathize with this character. Apart from that, emotional appeal is created with the help of music which reflects the experiences of an individual who may feel helpless sometimes, but is able to regain one’s confidence. In turn, one can say that logos or appeal to rationality does not play an important role in this presentation. This is one of the aspects that can be distinguished. Overall, the use of these rhetorical strategies makes the presentation more convincing.

Furthermore, the speaker is able to address the audience by combining verbal and visual elements. For instance, the viewers can see that the most important parts of this speech appear on the screen. In most cases, these words replicate the author’s speech, especially at the beginning when she mentions the scale of illiteracy in the United States (“My struggle for literacy in America”).

However, they also supplement the ideas that the speaker expresses. In particular, they can throw light on the experiences of a girl named Samantha who cannot overcome her illiteracy. For instance, she becomes obsessed with the idea that she cannot “keep up with the readings’ (“My struggle for literacy in America”).


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So, one can say that this text helps the speaker make the presentation more fluent. Yet, this text is also necessary to help viewers who may have some hearing impairments. Judging from the tone of the author, one can say that she is extremely concerned about the issues that she discusses. The word choices of the speaker indicate that she wants to provide encouragement to the audience.

Moreover, the author includes various images in the presentation. In particular, one can speak about the combination of cartoons and drawings. These images depict people who are mentioned in the author’s narrative. In most cases, these cartoons and drawings are related to a girl named Samantha who attempts to develop her literacy skills. This story is necessary to make the speech more vivid. It should be noted that while depicting Samantha, the author does not try to describe the face of this character.

This is one of the details that can attract the attention of a viewer. Probably, the use of this technique is necessary to show that such difficulties can be encountered by a great number of people. One can say that the text and images supplement one another. Moreover, this presentation includes a link to a website which can show how literacy skills should be developed. This is another aspect that should be distinguished.

It is possible to say that the author attempts to support her claim with the help of personal examples. In particular, she argues that if she was able to overcome her illiteracy, other people may also cope with this task. Moreover, the speaker mentions that there are various methods that can enable a person to improve his/her literacy skills.

The main limitation of this argument is the personal story of Samantha may not be applicable to other people. For instance, some of them may have cognitive or visual impairments. Therefore, they may not be able to follow the recommendations offered by the author. However, this limitation does not undermine the ideas expressed by the speaker because many people can cope with this problem only because they do not know much about educational methods that can help them.

One can argue that the speaker examines the topic from a personal perspective. Therefore, she relies primarily on her own experiences while the problem of illiteracy. This approach prevents the author from identifying the main reasons why many people may lack literacy skills. This is one of the short-comings that should be considered.

Works Cited

“My struggle for literacy in America.” Online video clip. YouTube . YouTube, 17 Jun. 2013. Web. < > .


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