Literature Study GuidesWe Choose To Go To The Moon Speech

We Choose to Go to the Moon Speech | Study Guide

John F. Kennedy

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Course Hero. "We Choose to Go to the Moon Speech Study Guide." Course Hero. 26 Oct. 2018. Web. 5 July 2020. <>.

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Course Hero. (2018, October 26). We Choose to Go to the Moon Speech Study Guide. In Course Hero. Retrieved July 5, 2020, from

In text

(Course Hero, 2018)



Course Hero. "We Choose to Go to the Moon Speech Study Guide." October 26, 2018. Accessed July 5, 2020.


Course Hero, "We Choose to Go to the Moon Speech Study Guide," October 26, 2018, accessed July 5, 2020,



John F. Kennedy

Year Delivered



Primary Source


History, Speech

At a Glance

  • From 1947 to 1991 the United States and the Soviet Union were competing for international dominance in the Cold War, an ideological standoff between the two superpowers.
  • Once space exploration became possible, American and Soviet scientists raced to best their rival's technology. The competition became known as the "space race," for which President John F. Kennedy (1917–63) increased funding and pledged to put an American astronaut on the moon before the decade ended.
  • In September 1962 Kennedy visited several National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) research sites, including one in Houston, Texas, seeking support for NASA funding. His speech at Houston's Rice University praises the moon mission and challenges the United States to promote peace instead of war.
  • Written primarily by presidential speech writer Ted Sorensen (1928–2010), the speech is generally attributed to President Kennedy. Presidents' speeches are normally crafted by speech writers, who seek to reflect the views and policies of the president.
  • The speech appealed to Americans' pioneer heritage and eagerness to push toward the limits of a new frontier. Although Kennedy's detractors found the costs of space exploration prohibitive, the speech was well received and proved Kennedy's ambitious commitment to the moon mission.
  • Part of Kennedy's legacy as a visionary president, the speech highlights the role of science, technology, and exploration in national identity. The nation later met Kennedy's goals, sending three astronauts to the moon in 1969.


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