Ronald Reagan Speech Analysis

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The two speeches I will be examining given by William (Bill) Clinton and Ronald Reagan. Bill Clinton was the 42nd President of the United States; he served two consecutive terms from 1993-2001. Ronald Reagan was the 40th President, and was also in office for two consecutive terms from 1981-1989. Both of these speeches were made after moments of great tragedy in our nation; it is at these times when our current president will address the country—extending words of grief and support to encourage us to keep forging ahead. Presidents are asked to give several different types of speeches while in office, ranging from speeches that announce their candidacy, address the nation in times of hardship or triumph, to speeches of farewell as they prepare…show more content…
The main thing I noticed about President Clinton’s verbal and non-verbal style is he seems to make many unnecessary pauses. In his nine-minute speech, I counted one hundred seventy-three pauses. Most of which, I feel, were unnecessary. There were two times during his speech that he paused a little less: these times were when he was strongly encouraging the people of Oklahoma and the American people. I feel that these pauses were very distracting and took away from the overall tone of the speech. I couldn’t tell where he was trying to place emphasis or unnecessarily pausing. I didn’t notice Clinton using any filler words or phrases however; I believe his excessive pausing could be considered a type of filler, for me it was just as distracting as the word “um”. Clinton only raises his arms one time at the beginning of the speech when he was signaling the crowd to be seated. Beyond that initial movement we do not see him move again. I’m sure this was because this was a memorial speech and the situation would not have warranted big gestures. President Clinton’s body language was fitting for the type of speech he was giving. He wore a black suit, white shirt, and a dark grey tie. He stood behind the podium, and read from his printed speech. He stood up straight, never slouching, and did not fidget or lean on the podium at any time. He made eye contact when appropriate making sure to scan the room and not linger on any one person or place to long. He appeared mournful and somber, but at the same time showed he was confident, poised, and encouraging. His voice was steady and he came across very sincere. I believe he definitely got his message across. The audience seemed to respond well to him and clapped when
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