Several decades ago, the global women’s rights treaty was ratified by a majority of the world’s nation. Despite its many successes in advancing and empowering women in relation to women’s rights, poverty, decision-making, violence against women, and other numerous issues actually still exist in all aspects of women’s life.
Therefore, the 4th World Conference on Women with its unique slogan “Action for Equality, Development, and Peace” was held in Beijing, China from the 4th to the 15th of September 1995 with participation of international delegates from more than 180 countries including the United States of America (“Beijing Women’s Conference”). This conference was prepared in order to advance the goals of equality, development, and peace for all women everywhere in the interest of all humanity.
Proudly, the First Lady of the United States of America, Hillary Diane Rodham Clinton took to the podium at this conference to speak up in order to achieve greater equality and opportunity for women all around the world (“Hillary Clinton Biography”). As an American, Clinton addressed problems that every country, including the United States of America, faced regarding the liberties of women, and why it was important that women should receive freedoms and allow their voice to be heard.
In her speech, “Women’s Rights Are Human Rights,” Clinton effectively delivered to audience the ways in which women should be treated equally under human rights. The intended audiences for the speech that gathered in Beijing to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the founding of the United Nations is hundreds of governments and other organizations to ensure the full enjoyment by women of all human rights and fundamental freedoms (“Beijing Women’s Conference”) Throughout her speech, Clinton uses the rhetorical appeals and certain rhetorical devices to argue that women’s rights should be equivalent to human’s rights.
In her speech, Clinton uses the three rhetorical appeals which are pathos, ethos, and logos. The speaker establishes her trustworthiness and credibility through her speech by giving a clear statement that she is the person who deserves to deliver the speech regarding women’s rights during that time. The speaker presents ethos when she says, “Over the past 25 years, I have worked persistently on issues relating to women, children, and families. Over the past two and a half years, I’ve had the opportunity to learn more about the challenges facing women in my own country and around the world. Based on this statement, Clinton shows her competence by relating her own experience and knowledge to project a positive impression to the audience.
She reflects her passion with a high level of confidence throughout her speech that also established her credibility. Furthermore, Clinton is also a well-known speaker who has a high-reputation regarding women’s issues. She was one of the most prominent international figures during the late 90s to speak out against practices that abused women around the world. During her career, she received many awards and honors from the American government and international organizations.
Therefore, her efforts and recognition in a previous era shows that she is a suitable speaker to present the speech regarding women issues holistically. Next, Clinton successfully appeals to her audience’s emotions while delivering her speech. She uses pathos to evoke emotions from the audience and causes the audience not just to respond emotionally but to feel in deep with her points. Moreover, she addresses an argument about the women who are treated unfairly all over the planet just because women have no special place in the world community.
For example, from the speech she states, “speaking to you today, I speak for them, just as each of us speaks for women around the world who are denied the chance to go to school, or see a doctor, or own property, or have a say about the direction about their lives, simply because they are women. ” Here, Clinton lists how different scenarios affect the human rights of millions of women all over the planet. Clinton illustrates the painful reality of women’s lives to the audience that is intended to make them feel sympathy by portraying women as victims of inequality.
She also emphasize the word “speak” at the beginning of each sentence because she believes that this international conference on women’s rights is the best platform for her to speak up about some women’s issues that have been overlooked and denied until today. The way she uses the word “speak” mainly to delivers her message across in a smooth and concise way by listing several different violations of human rights. Furthermore, Clinton also provides one upsetting example when she states, “It’s a violation of human rights when a leading ause of death worldwide among women ages 14 to 44 is the violence they are subjected to in their own homes by their own relatives. ” This statistic probably reminds the audiences of the immediacy of the women’s rights and maybe even hit close to the audience’s perception and emotions to look more serious regarding the women’s rights issues. Based on this statistics, Clinton uses pathos by arguing that women in all group of ages deserved to be treated equally and assuming that she do not agree with the way women are currently being treated by the world.
Moreover, the logos appeal comes into play in her speech when she claims that a peaceful world cannot be attained as long as the discrimination of women still exists. At the end of her speech, she states that: as long as discrimination and inequities remain so commonplace everywhere in the world, as long as girls and women are valued less, fed less, fed last, overworked, underpaid, not schooled, subjected to violence in and outside their homes—the potential of the human family to create peaceful, prosperous world will not be realized.
She uses clear and logical claims that women’s rights are important to create a better world community. Clinton is trying to make a relation between the results of the discrimination against women that happens throughout the world that can lead to destruction in the family structure. In most of her sentences, Clinton illustrates that women play an important role to bring new strength and stability to family as long the world gives the chance for women to lead a life without unjust restrictions in every aspect of their rights.
She suggests that the strength and stability of the family is the solution to create a world in which women are treated with dignity, exempt of discriminations. Therefore, a main focus towards the lives of women and their families will be a potential way to give women the true equality. Attempting to persuade the world to stop violating women’s right, Clinton uses concrete diction by successfully using repetition in her speech to show her disapproval for the violation and abuses of women around the entire world.
Confidently, she lists several specific violations against women’s rights by emphasizing the phrase, “It’s a violation of human rights when.. ,” by repeating it at the beginning of each statement. For example, she says “It is a violation of human rights when women are doused with gasoline, set on fire, and burned to death because their marriage dowries are deemed too small. ” By repeating the phrase, she actually broadens the real image of violence that women suffered for too long by listing specific problems occurring in each and every corner of the world.
In addition, by illustrating the reality of what the women have experienced, Clinton effectively broadens and changes the audience’s perceptions by providing more examples about the problems women face around the world. For example she gives some unfortunate example that states—“it’s a violation of human rights when young girls are brutalized by the painful and degrading practice of genital mutilation. ” Overall in the speech, Clinton uses the same words at the beginning of the sentences to illuminate what women have went through, how they were being silenced as human beings, and how their human rights were violated.
Clinton’s “Women’s Right Are Human Rights” speech serves primarily to inspire and bring new hopes to the women. By opening up more eyes about the problems women face around the world, Clinton proves to the world in this conference that the equality of women is now a serious issue that people needs to be concerned with. As an iconic figure in the movement for women’s rights globally, the First Lady of the United States has a strong stance in protecting and securing women’s rights.
She does believe that women and men should be given the same opportunities in everything and ensure the implementation of the human rights of women as an indivisible part of all human rights. Moreover, throughout the speech she not only focuses on what had been done in the past, but what will be done in the future if women are given true equality. Until now, Clinton plays an important role in promoting sustainable development of women through full concerns for the quality and sustainability of life for present and future generations.
Furthermore, she has successfully establishes the ethos, pathos, and logos appeals from beginning until the end of her speech by showing her disapproval for the treatment of women. Every single word that she uses brings a deep meaning and has a specific purpose on its own to accomplish her goals in the conference. As a whole, the flow of this historic speech comes very well and Clinton delivers her speech in her eloquent, well-informed, and organized way about the huge issues affecting women.