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En1320 Essay 3 1

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EN1320

EN1320
04/13/2013
04/13/2013
Essay 3.1 Rhetorical Analysis
Obamas “A More Perfect Union” Speech
Essay 3.1 Rhetorical Analysis
Obamas “A More Perfect Union” Speech

On March 18, 2008, Senator and future President Barack Obama delivered a speech that was titled “A More Perfect Union” (Obama Race Speech, 2008). This speech took place in Philadelphia, PA at the National Constitution Center. This speech was given during the 2008 Presidential race and looks to address the concerns regarding video of controversial and racially charged comments made by former pastor Jeremiah Wright which seemed to playing on loop in every media outlet possible. He also addressed the subjects of racial tension and race and inequality in the United States. From the beginning of the speech, it is evident that the most effective appeal that Obama chooses to use is ethos. As a rhetoric tool, ethos is used to establish character. Ethos is an appeal to ethics, and it is a means of convincing someone of the character or credibility of the persuader (Examples of Ethos, Logos, and Pathos).
In order to establish an effective ethos, the speaker must present themselves in a way that will make the audience believe what they say. A strong example of this is when he uses the quote “We the people, in order to form a more perfect union”. In referring to the U.S Constitution, this compels the audience to make a connection of significance and importance between his speech and that of the Constitution. Another way he established ethos in his speech was when he speaks of his personal and family history. By stating “I am the son of a black man from Kenya and a white woman from Kansas. I was raised with the help of a white grandfather who survived a Depression to serve in Patton's Army during World War II and a white grandmother who worked on a bomber assembly line at Fort Leavenworth while...

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