I’m a big fan of using real world, “in the moment” resources in the classroom so I couldn’t ignore Oprah’s recent Golden Globes speech to help students to develop their rhetorical analysis. Here are a few ideas you could try if you choose to use the speech as a resource for developing rhetorical analysis:


Starter Activity


Discuss #Metoo and create a class mind map to capture the ideas.


Discussion prompts


  • What makes her opening story so powerful?
  • What is interesting about the structure of the line “I remember his tie was white, and of course his skin was black, and I had never seen a black man being celebrated like that”?
  • What does the inclusion of the story of Recy Taylor add to the speech?
  • How does she flatter her audience of the people in the room?
  • How does she connect with the audience watching on TV?
  • What examples of pathos can you find in the speech? What effect do they have?
  • What do you think she means when she says “Speaking your truth is the most powerful tool we all have”?
  • Discuss the impact of the metaphor of “A new dawn” which she uses, and the language surrounding the idea.


Writing task


The speech has created a media frenzy about the possibility of Oprah running for President of the United States in 2020. Write a persuasive speech which argues whether she should or should not run.


Plenary activity

Revisit the #Metoo ideas from the starter activity. How does the speech relate to the ideas from this discussion?


Here’s the speech in full:



Here’s a link to the transcript:


I hope you find some of these useful. If nothing else I think it’s a brilliant speech for our students to watch.


Rhetorical analysis using Oprah Winfrey’s Golden Globes Speech

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