American Rhetoric's Top 100 Speeches of the 20th Century http://www.americanrhetoric.com/top100speechesall.html highlights a diversity of speakers. Brilliant passion, complicated sentence structure, even three or four syllable words! As a student growing up in the 1960s, I was exposed to tremendous higher level thinking, free discussion, complicated language. Let's refuse to be dumbed down! We have access to fantastic thought and passion. The website has hundreds and hundreds of speeches.
Are you prepared to let students browse through this amazing collection of ideas? Here are some interesting choices-- hopefully a fair and diverse group. (And don't forget Abraham Lincoln, FDR, Adlai Stevenson, and even Richard Nixon.)
Ronald Reagan Remarks at the Brandenburg Gatehttp://www.americanrhetoric.com/speeches/ronaldreaganbrandenburggate.htm
Theodore Roosevelt The Man with the Muck-rake 1908
Elie Wiesel The Perils of Indifference
Barbara Pierce Bush Commencement Address at Wellesley College
Remarks to the U.N. 4th World Conference on Women Plenary Session
And two of my favorites:
Address at Rice University on the Nation's Space Program
Martin Luther King, Jr.
I Have a Dream
|Cannot hear this speech too often.|