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English 101 - Essay Example

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his world will little note, nor long remember, what we say herebegins The Gettysburg Address, authored and delivered by Abraham Lincoln on November 19, 1893. Modern scholars still discus whether Lincoln understood the brevity of his words on that day in Gettysburg Pennsylvania…
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Literary Analysis The Gettysburg Address his world will little nor long remember, what we say herebegins The Gettysburg Address, authored and delivered by Abraham Lincoln on November 19, 1893. Modern scholars still discus whether Lincoln understood the brevity of his words on that day in Gettysburg Pennsylvania. The President of the United States was invited to speak. "Abraham Lincoln prepared those remarks very carefully. Though he spoke for only three minutes, the crowd broke into applause five times"(McCurdy 1). Written well over a hundred years ago, The Gettysburg Address is still used as a prime example of highly effective and efficient writing. In just under two hundred and seventy words, Lincoln managed to do what most orators only dream of. He embodied the great American spirit of nationalism coupled with the country immense sacrifice and loss due to war - expressing in words what many American citizens simply did not know how to. Speeches, like the Gettysburg Address, differ very little from other forms of writing and use the same literary devices found in fiction.
Word choice is extremely important in all types of writing. Lincoln word choice in the Gettysburg Address allows his speech to be both emotional and accessible to his audience. Many of the words are only one syllable, and the entire speech is lain talk.Lincoln writes ow we are engaged in a great civil war We are met on a great battlefield of war,and continues ut it can never forget what they did here. Lincoln is careful to write and speak in such a way that makes his audience feel comfortable. He is not speaking to a room full of scholars but to the mothers, wives, and families of men who gave their lives in war. Lincoln makes sure his word choice will be understood by those who are listening. Peter Blanck, a Civil War Historian, asserts "Not only the Battle of Gettysburg, but the whole Civil War, means to us today what Lincoln said it must mean at that dark time of mourning for the dead. The nation, he believed, could be reborn out of those deaths; and it was."(1).
Lincoln also makes good use of repetition. In the final sentence of the Gettysburg Address, he writes nd that government of the people... by the people... for the people... shall not perish from this earth. Repetition leads to remembrance. The rhythm of not only the Gettysburg Address but the way Lincoln delivers it, is almost hymn like. Alliteration can be seen in the use of words beginning with The audience can easily remember what they have heard, and bring a piece of history and perhaps comfort home with them. There are varying accounts have been given as to the time and place of the composition of the Gettysburg Address. From presumably authoritative sources statements have come that it was written on a scrap of paper picked up from the floor of the car as Lincoln was journeying from Washington to Gettysburg(Carmichael 84).
The Gettysburg Address is concise and to the point. Lincoln realized the emotional nature of dedicating a cemetery to the hundreds of men that died in battle. He understands loss, and knows that no matter what he says he will not be able to bring back the dead. "Not only the Battle of Gettysburg, but the whole Civil War, means to us today what Lincoln said it must mean at that dark time of mourning for the dead. The nation, he believed, could be reborn out of those deaths; and it was."(McCurdy). In knowing this, he speaks directly to the audience, offering them hope and solace that their loved ones did not die in vain. Lincoln is humble and grateful to the sacrifice that his American citizens have made. It is Lincoln sincerity combined with a natural word choice, and use of repetition that makes The Gettysburg Address, unforgettable.
Works Cited
Blanck, Peter, and Chen Song. ""Never Forget What They Did Here": Civil War Pensions for Gettysburg Union Army Veterans and Disability in Nineteenth-Century America." William and Mary Law Review 44.3 (2003): 1109+.
Carmichael, Orton H. Lincoln's Gettysburg Address. New York: Abingdon Press, 1917.
Lincoln, Abraham. Gettysburg Address. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1995. Read More
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