essay2final - Matt Burke February 7 2007 Writing 140...

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Matt Burke February 7, 2007 Writing 140 – Assignment 2 Language and Political Effect A Simple Fact During his short term as President of the United States, John F. Kennedy is able to capture the attention of the American people during his speeches because of the rhetorical devices he employs. Presidential speeches are spoken in conditions where the outcome is uncertain. He is addressing a huge audience where views, understandings and impressions are going to be different everywhere. Yet Presidential speeches have the rhetorical ability to bring in multiple views without causing controversy. Kennedy uses logical ideas to get the audience’s attention and to establish his authoritative power and then uses the linguistic technique of appealing to the audience’s ethos and pathos to gain support. Kennedy’s dominant rhetorical device is his use of specific and simple logical facts to establish his authority over his audience and in doing so gain their support for his proposals. In Kennedy’s speeches he uses simple logic that cannot be disputed to support his claims and to win over his audience with vague proposals that the audience can do nothing but support. For example in both his “Inaugural Address” and his “Special Message to the Congress on Urgent Nation Needs” he refers to common enemies our nation must fight against. In his “Inaugural Address” it is the “struggle against common enemies of man: tyranny, poverty, disease, and war itself” and in his other speech
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Kennedy says “the battle that is now going on around the world between freedom and tyranny.” Both these statements appeal to the logos or simple reasoning of the audience. And neither of these statements will be disagreed with.
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essay2final - Matt Burke February 7 2007 Writing 140...

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