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Rhetorical Analysis of JFK'S Inaugural Address - Essay Example

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Rhetorical Analysis of JFK'S Inaugural Address On January 20 year 1961, John F. Kennedy (JFK) delivered an inaugural speech that has become a landmark and the best presidential speech ever delivered in America. The 35th president of America and the youngest in the American history was sworn in on this day…
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Rhetorical Analysis of JFKS Inaugural Address
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Download file to see previous pages Therefore, the speech encourages Americans that through him a torch of a new revolution has been handed over to them and all must participate. JFK feels that in unity Americans can achieve more. Therefore, he calls them to a pledge of allegiance to the nation. Additionally, JKF called for Americans to be proud of their nation and to give it the necessary support to climb ladders that other nations have not climbed. His speech lures Americans to believe in their great potential to bring about changes they want in their land and beyond. This paper will focus on rhetorical analysis of JFK’s inaugural address. The inaugural speech by JFK had several goals. First, JFK needed to pass a message of accomplishment in winning the presidential elections. Kennedy was nominated as the democratic candidate for presidency in 1960, defeating the republican’s choice, Richard Nixon. Therefore, JFK starts his speech with diction to show his celebration of winning and his belief in freedom gained through his election. To him, this day not only signifies victory but also is a celebration of freedom, because it symbolizes the end of poor leadership and a beginning of another era. JFK starts his speech by reminding Americans of the pre-existing sense of pride of their nation. Kennedy says, “For I have sworn before you and Almighty God the same solemn oath our forebears prescribed nearly a century and three-quarters ago” (Kennedy). One reason that makes Kennedy revisit ancient achievements is to show that he is in line with American Vision and to build a good name for himself. To Americans, the day when they have received their independence means very much – it is one of the most significant moments in their history. Mentioning it, Kennedy is bound to get some followers who associate themselves with the independence. He later claims, “Let the word go forth from this time and place, to friend and foe alike, that the torch has been passed to a new generation of Americans born in this century, tempered by war, disciplined by a hard and bitter peace, proud of our ancient heritage ” (Kennedy). By this, Kennedy shows, through words, a picture to the Americans – he has taken the mantle from leaders before him to fulfill certain tasks and responsibilities according to the collective wish of the Americans. Secondly, JFK seeks support for his presidency and uses the unification tool to lure Americans to support him. His speech is full of anaphora of “to” and “let both sides” to address both the republicans and the democrats present in this inauguration. JFK has a goal of uniting all Americans and fighting racism. To achieve this, he sates, “And so, my fellow Americans: ask not what your country can do for you—ask what you can do for your country. My fellow citizens of the world: ask not what America will do for you, but what together we can do for the freedom of man” (Kennedy). This statement inspires Americans and the world at large as they have so much they can do for their country. Additionally, it demonstrates them that if people collectively put their mind to something, they will achieve it. For instance, it will take unification to do away with racism, corruption, and achieve world freedom and world peace. Additionally, Kennedy unifies the public through the use of alliteration. For instance, he says, “Let’s go forth and lead the land we love” ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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