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Rhetorical Analysis of Obama's Speech

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Rhetorical Analysis of Obama's Speech

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Analysis of Obama's victory speech

Obama's victory speech is a speech that the democrat Barack Obama held in his hometown Chicago, after being elected for president on November 4th, 2012. Chicago is where he in 2008 won his first presidential election. When taking a starting point in the pentagon model, we know that a text (in this case a speech) is always centered around an intention of the writer/speaker and is always dependent on the interrelationship between the topic, the writer, the reader/audience, the circumstances and the language. The topic of the speech is the election, the political campaign, the American people and the hopes for the future of the United States. The audience is primarily Obama's supporters, but also the rest of America and in fact, the whole world. Barack Obama starts by thanking the audience. Three times, at a matter of fact. That is because of the loud cheering, but also to underline his thanks. Then he speaks of how the nation is moving forward, and here he uses pathos and speaks to the patriotism in the Americans. This evokes positive feelings about the situation and towards the speech and speaker. He could easily leave out “more than 200 years after a former colony won the right to determine its own destiny,” in the second line and “the American people” in the third paragraph. These are called pleonasms. Pathos is the most commonly used kind of appeal, obviously because he is happy and the audience is happy, and it is a celebration. The other forms of appeals are also used, but not as much: Ethos is present during the whole speech as the speaker is The President of the United States of America and therefore has immense authority. But ethos is not only about respecting the person, but also about liking him. In the second paragraph of page 2, Obama thanks all his supporters and tells them how much he appreciates them. This obviously gives the audience a more positive view of him. On page 3, paragraph 2, there is a great example...

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