The utilization of empathy in a narrative

Wangari Maathai’s was the first African women to receive the noble peace prize.  Also for the first time, the peace prize was given to someone who had committed their life to environmental work, planting trees all over the world. This award, given in 2004, resulted in controversy.  Critics could not see the relationship between peace and environmental work.  In her speech after receiving the award, Maathai draws the connections between peace, caring for the planet, democracy, and the work her organization, Green Belt, was doing.  Because her speech in part was a justification of the award and the Nobel committee’s decision, she had to find ways to get her audience on her side.  My lab group explored the ways in which she uses empathy in her narrative to support her argument. This link will take you to our analysis.

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