Date of Award
Master of Science (MS)
D. L. Miller
The purpose of this study was to examine the speaking of Dr. Charles Monroe Sheldon and to evaluate his speaking during the period from 1905 to 1915. The working hypothesis for this study was that during this period Dr. Charles Monroe Sheldon was an effective speaker, and partly because of this ability as a speaker, he was a man of importance and influence. The study was limited to the years 1905-1915 because these were the years when Dr. Sheldon gained world-wide recognition as a writer and as a speaker. The conclusion formed, after the investigation, was that the working hypothesis was valid. A study of the period revealed that it was a period of reform. Dr. Sheldon became aware of social, economic, and religious issues and took an active part in speaking out in favor of reforms in all of these areas. Therefore, the conclusion was drawn that Charles Monroe Sheldon was an active speaker on reform measures and religious themes, and that his speaking was influenced by current affairs. The biographical details of Dr. Sheldon's life revealed that the early experiences of life on a South Dakota farm profoundly affected Dr. Sheldon's thinking and store of ideas. His conversion and his education in South Dakota were early influences seen later in his speaking. Other influences were his education at Phillips Academy, Andover, Massachusetts; Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island; and Andover Theological Seminary, Andover, Massachusetts; his extensive speaking career; and his individual reading. In determining the validity of the working hypothesis, three selected speeches were analyzed. The areas investigated in this analysis were invention, logical proof, emotional proof, ethical proof, arrangement, style, delivery, memory, and effectiveness. This investigation revealed that techniques used by Dr. Sheldon were the result of his early experiences, his education, and his observation of life. That Dr. Sheldon was a man of importance and influence cannot be denied. That his importance and influence were due in part to his effectiveness as a speaker has been established from the evidence garnered in this investigation of his speaking career and an analysis of three selected speeches from the period 1905-1915.
Copyright 1969 Anna Locke Herman
Herman, Anna Locke, "Dr. Charles Monroe Sheldon : The Rhetoric of a Religious Reformer" (1969). Master's Theses. 1207.