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Voices Against the Unjust


My “Voices Against the Unjust” project is a podcast episode that delves into the persistent issue of police brutality and racism against African Americans in the United States. In this craft essay, I will discuss the context that influenced my project, its intended audience, genre conventions, and the rhetorical choices I made to achieve its purpose and elicit specific responses. Through this project, I aim to shed light on the gravity of police brutality, provide historical context, and encourage discussions that contribute to positive change. Moreover, the podcast is designed to reach a broad audience, especially those concerned with social justice and racial equality.

The context influencing my project is the ongoing struggle against racial injustice and the pressing need for reform within law enforcement agencies. The project is designed to be published as a podcast episode on an online platform dedicated to fostering conversations about social issues. This venue allows for disseminating information to a diverse audience, enabling meaningful discussions and the potential for greater awareness and action.

“Voices Against the Unjust” is an informative podcast episode that reinterprets podcast conventions through an engaging conversation, employs emotional appeal, utilizes factual data, and incorporates powerful poetry to raise awareness about police brutality and inspire collective action against racial injustice.

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Podcast Convention

The podcast employs a casual tone and colloquial diction to establish a relatable atmosphere for young listeners. For instance, in the introduction, the host introduces himself and the co-hosts, creating a friendly and approachable environment. This convention appeals to the target audience of high school students by speaking their language and reducing the distance between the podcast hosts and listeners. Using phrases like “What’s up guys?” and “How’s it going, everyone?” fosters a sense of camaraderie, inviting listeners to engage in a candid conversation about a serious issue. This use of language and tone supports the podcast’s purpose of engaging young adults in discussions about police brutality. By subverting traditional formalities, the project successfully adapts to the communication style of its intended audience, making the topic accessible and relatable.

In addition, the podcast utilizes an interview format to infuse authenticity into the discussions. This format creates a dynamic interaction between the hosts and co-hosts, enhancing the podcast’s conversational nature. It also allows for different perspectives to be presented, enriching the analysis of the topic. For instance, Kevin contributes, “As a white man, I can never fully understand what it is like to live as a racial minority in fear of police brutality.” This interview-style approach grants Kevin the opportunity to share his perspective, emphasizing the importance of allies in the fight against racial injustice. Furthermore, to the interview format, the podcast incorporates sound effects, such as sirens and riot noises, to immerse listeners in the narrative. These sound effects simulate real-life scenarios, adding a layer of emotional resonance to the discussions. For instance, the sound of sirens when Jingsen mentions, “thinking the sirens were reaching for me,” enhances the impact of the statement. The combination of sound effects with the interview format creates an engaging experience that appeals to the auditory senses of the audience. By utilizing these podcast conventions, the project effectively conveys the urgency and emotional weight of the issue. The interview format brings a personal dimension to the discourse, while sound effects heighten the emotional impact of the narratives shared.

Utilizing the Power of Historical Context

The podcast also engages with historical context, referencing significant events such as the LA Riots and the killing of George Floyd. George Floyd, a Black man, died on May 25, 2020, after Minneapolis police officers responded to a call about a counterfeit $20 bill he allegedly used to buy cigarettes (Arango et al., 2022). The incident led to widespread protests against police brutality and systemic racism. These historical references contextualize the issue of police brutality, emphasizing its historical roots and ongoing prevalence. Moreover, discussing the LA Riots triggered by Rodney King’s beating underscores the systemic nature of the problem and the perpetuation of violence. By weaving in historical incidents, the podcast reveals the urgency of reform.

The Impact of Poetry

“Voices Against the Injustice” effectively employs poetry as a rhetorical device to evoke emotions and provide personal insights into the experience of racial injustice. The poems “For the Record” by Audre Lorde and “Third Degree” by Langston Hughes capture the pain, anger, and frustration felt by victims of police brutality and racism (Kaba, 2023). Lorde’s poem vividly describes the tragic death of Eleanor Bumpers, exposing the brutality and injustice perpetuated by law enforcement. Similarly, Hughes’ poem provides a poignant representation of the emotions and fears experienced by African Americans facing racial violence. The inclusion of these poems engages listeners on an emotional level and helps them empathize with the victims’ experiences.


“Voices Against the Unjust” is more than just a podcast episode. It is a platform for reflection, awareness, and change. Through the reimagining of podcast conventions, emotional appeal, incorporation of factual data, and integration of powerful poetry, the project strives to ignite conversations about police brutality and racism. By disseminating knowledge, fostering empathy, and encouraging action, this podcast episode contributes to a broader movement against racial injustice and paves the way for a more equitable society. In addition, the power of podcasts and poetry lies in their ability to amplify voices, spark conversations, and drive transformation, and “Voices Against the Unjust” leverages these mediums to advocate for a more just and inclusive world.

Annotated Bibliography

Arango, T., Bogel-Burroughs, N., & Cramer, M. (2022, July 29). How George Floyd died, and what happened next. The New York Times – Breaking News, US News, World News and Videos.

The authors reconstruct the events leading to the death of George Floyd on May 25, 2020, using security footage, witness videos, and official documents. They provide a detailed narrative of Floyd’s arrest, the actions of the involved police officers, and how his death ignited nationwide protests against police brutality (Arango et al., 2022). This source highlights the power of storytelling and accurate documentation in shedding light on social and political issues. It prompts me to think about how narratives, whether in the form of articles or poetry, can influence public understanding and activism. In addition, I can use the source in the essay to provide a factual and comprehensive overview of the circumstances surrounding George Floyd’s death. The sources serve as an authoritative account of events, supporting the larger argument about the impact of his death on the protest movement against police brutality and systemic racism.

Kaba, M. (2023). POEMS ABOUT POLICE VIOLENCE. Black & Blue | History and Current Manifestations of Policing, Violence & Resistance.

The author discusses the power of poetry to lift spirits and inspire resistance against state violence. Kaba argues that poetry can help people imagine a world without police and prisons and that this kind of imagining is a crucial part of the struggle for freedom (Kaba, 2023). I can use this source in my GA essay to explore the ways in which political poetry can be a powerful tool for imagining and building alternative forms of community safety. Kaba’s work challenges people to think beyond the limits of reform and to imagine a world without police and prisons. The author’s poetry and prose offer a powerful critique of state violence and a vision for transformative justice.


Arango, T., Bogel-Burroughs, N., & Cramer, M. (2022, July 29). How George Floyd died, and what happened next. The New York Times – Breaking News, US News, World News and Videos.

Kaba, M. (2023). POEMS ABOUT POLICE VIOLENCE. Black & Blue | History and Current Manifestations of Policing, Violence & Resistance.


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