Spoken and Written English Discourse
Speech: ‘Ich bin ein Berliner’
John F. Kennedy
Name: Maaike Wittebrood
Student number: 112418
Lecturer: Anita Maessen
The author of the speech is John F. Kennedy. He was in 1963 the president of the United States of America. John F. Kennedy became president on 20 January 1961 until his assassination on 22 November 1963. Kennedy was against everything that was associated with communism. He was also a very important person in the ‘Cold War’. Kennedy also was seen as de icon of the Western world of freedom and democracy.
The speech was given at June 26, 1963 in West-Berlin. During that time Germany was split up in West-Germany and East-Germany. West-Germany and West-Berlin were in the hands of England, France and the USA. East-Germany and East-Berlin in the hands of the Soviet-Union. Because Berlin was located in East-Germany, West-Berlin was also automatically located in the part of the Soviet-Union. This made West-Berlin isolated from the ‘Western World’. With the use of planes West-Berlin was provided with food and materials. In June 1963 John F. Kennedy, as the ‘Icon of Western Freedom’, came to West-Berlin.
The audience of the speech were almost only citizens who lived in West-Berlin. Also the speech was mainly mend for them. Because John F. Kennedy also says negative things about the communism like; ‘Freedom has many difficulties and democracy is not perfect, but we have never had to put a wall up to keep our people in, to prevent them from leaving us.’ (John F. Kennedy, ‘Ich bin ein Berliner’. 1963) You could also look at this as a message for the communism, and in that case the speech would be mend for them. In the previous quote John F. Kennedy compares freedom and democracy (the Western ideology) with communism. The audience for example this quote can be looked at from different perspectives. So the quote can be mend for the Western...
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