Date of Award

Spring 2020

Presentation Date


Document Type

Senior Essay

First Advisor

Br. Martin Yribarren


This essay discusses the timeless nature of persuasion as explained in Aristotle's philosophy. By exploring the ties between Aristotle and Plato’s arguments, there is an evident relationship between the past notion of individual “happiness” to the concept of the society’s objective to attain the “good.” Through the “good,” and some foundational elements of rhetoric, Aristotle constructs a clear model of persuasion that can be used to analyze successful speeches throughout different cultures, time periods and languages. Specifically analyzing Pericles’ “Funeral Oration,” the soliloquy in Shakespeare’s Hamlet, “To be, or not to be….,” and Lincoln’s “Gettysburg Address,” Aristotle’s model of persuasion addresses why each speech is successful.