Winston Churchill – Spoken and Written Rhetoric


During the time of the speech, in the 1940’s, spoken rhetoric was the main rhetoric type as opposed to written rhetoric. Spoken and written rhetoric was the main way that the Greeks would communicate during important events. There are three forms of rhetoric, judicial, legislative, and ceremonial. We shall fight them on the beaches is a speech written and spoken by Winston Churchill, the current British Prime Minister of the time. He had written this speech in efforts to notify the House of Commons of the great loss and somewhat victory when over 338,000 troops were brought back from the battlegrounds of Dunkirk. The reason this happened was because the Belgians had surrendered to the Nazis after being fiercely attacked from all angles. Because of this, it opened up the wall the Belgians, French, and British were holding up to keep the Nazis back.

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Rhetorical Background

Winston Churchill was born on November 30, 1874 in Blenheim Palace, Woodstock to the Lord and Lady Randolph Churchill. As a child, Churchill was very troublesome and had a hard time dealing with authority, it would only last up until his teen years though. When he was able to, his parents sent him off to the Royal Military Academy near Sandhurst, but in Camberley, UK. After graduating from the Royal Military Academy, he became an army officer. Then during WWI he served as President of the Board of Trade, Home Secretary, and First Lord of the Admiralty as part of the Asquith’s Liberal government. Although he served as all this, he is best known for his role in being the British Prime Minister from 1940-1945 and again from 1951-1955. This speech was actually written soon after he became Prime Minister on June 4, 1940. The reason this speech was written was because Churchill had to give an update to the House of Commons of the retreat from Dunkirk after the Belgian army surrendered. In this speech he talked about how 30,000+ troops were lost but over 338,0…