Rhetorical Analysis Of Kennedy 's Inaugural Address

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As a President of the United States, one should be expected to hold a level of charisma and eloquence that can sway a nation for the better in trying times. The inaugural address of the 35th President John F. Kennedy on January 20, 1961 is no such exception; orchestrating a symphony of emotion in words that would prove to be effective among the millions watching him. Such a crisis that the Cold War with the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (U.S.S.R) had elicited left the U.S. as well as the rest of the world in fear of possible nuclear warfare and the extermination of whole countries. Kennedy’s inaugural address would be a rhetorical hallmark in history, skillfully weaving a high intensity of pathos and logos throughout his speech, as…show more content…
Case in point, Kennedy specifically states that “In your [audience] hands, my fellow citizens, more than mine, will rest the final success or failure of our course” (21). This directly places the consequence of an individual overcoming his tribulations into the hearts of those watching – which would motivate them even more so. Not unlikely, Kennedy does indeed use his own authority as a cornerstone throughout his speech. In several areas, Kennedy makes it a point to propose new ideas in the face of a very possible danger. Such examples are “Let both sides seek to invoke the wonders of science instead of its wonders of terror” (17) and “Let both sides explore what problems unite us instead of belaboring those problems which divide us” (15). Not to forgo the strong presence of repetition in these statements, but the fact that a United States President brought these ideas out to light is nothing if not motivating. The U.S. President is a figurehead for the American people; a U.S. President’s actions reciprocate through the American people. If the President is looking for peace, the people will also look for peace, and peace in most terms means prosperity. For Kennedy, his statements vow that his administration will do what they can for the American people to ensure a level of prosperity, which is
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