Obama's Rhetoric and the Myth of Virtuous Power
Scientific Essay from the year 2009 in the subject English Language and Literature Studies - Culture and Applied Geography, grade: '-', University of Dusseldorf 'Heinrich Heine' (Institut für Kultur und Medien), language: English, abstract: An initial reaction to the appearance of Barack Obama on the American political stage has been one oscillating between reluctant approval, enthusiastic appreciation and mistrusting rejection. The chance of the first African- American president brought about much support for Obama, as well as critique claiming that he would just be a tool of liberal forces to put forth a politically correct agenda. The problem of race, very early on in the presidential primaries and later in the general election, was oddly unspoken of, yet permanently present. [...] Two speeches of Barack Obama will serve as a foundation for analysis. One is 'A More Perfect Union', given in March 2008 in the height of the Democratic primary campaign. It deals with the race problematic in America. The other one is his Inaugural Address from January 2009 which of course has a much more celebratory tone. Both speeches center around the question of how the American society does deal and should deal with times of economical distress though their topical focus is an entirely different one. However, the effect both aim for, and to a large degree surely achieve, is a uniting one. Uniting different racial groups, uniting political opponents, uniting most of the divisive tendencies of society to reclaim the American Dream.
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