A Lexico-Semantics Study of Dr Martin Luther King’s Jr. Nobel Peace Prize Acceptance Speech of 10th December 1964


    This study carried out a lexical-semantic study of Dr Martin Luther King’s Jr. Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech on 10th December 1964. The investigation discovered that there are various lexical-semantic theories that must be applied to the interpretation of meaning in a given text. In this case, the Principles of Recursiveness, Composition, Relevance, Informativeness, Scalar-Implicature, Function and Denotation were used to analyse the speech to ascertain the rhetorical power of the speech and how the fluency of meaning was achieved by the speaker (Dr Martin Luther King Jr) choice of words. The study discovered that the speaker did not only carefully choose his words to meet the standard of the above-laid principles, but at the same time ensured that these semantic theories enhanced the effectiveness of the speech. These facts were revealed in the study. This is why “words” form the thread on which we string our experiences Aldous Huxley (1937).

    Keywords: Civil Rights Movement, Lexical-Semantic, Nobel Peace Prize, Speech, Study  

    DOI: 10.36349/zamijoh.2023.v02i03.006

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    author/James, A., Ojo, O., Pane, A.Y., Lagan, B.S. & Songdena, J. 

    journal/Zamfara IJOH Vol. 2, Issue 3