Perhaps one of the most powerful speeches in American history is Martin Luther King's "I Have A Dream" speech made on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C., in 1963. We recently came across a post from FastCoDesign that captures sections of the speech as infographics to demonstrate what makes this speech so brilliant. The original analysis was done by Nancy Duarte who created an interactive visualization that analyzes the careful selection of words that Dr. King chose. To do this, Duarte used a bar graph to overlay blocks of text to map out his oration. The video speaks for itself, and it makes a perfect teaching tool for students in exacting the nuances of language, metaphor and history.
Martin Luther King Jr.'s speech analyzed by Nancy Duarte from Duarte on Vimeo.
Of course, using this in conjunction with the original footage is nothing short of ideal for honoring this leader's contribution to American history.
We plan on using these videos in our classrooms this week. The power of the original speech always leaves a lasting impression on our students, and we hope that by looking at the visualization, they will see "the shape of rhetorical genius" of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.