Essay On Ronald Reagan's State Of The Union Address

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Ronald Reagan was an influential and innovative American President who was often called the “Great Communicator” because of his inspirational speeches. From 1982 to 1984, Reagan gave three official State of the Union addresses. Reagan’s State of the Union addresses from his first term in office conformed to the conventions of modern State of the Union addresses and will be proved by the following points: • The speeches follow a structured formatting of showing concern, targeting specific issues, and offering policy recommendations. • Reagan’s addresses were given orally and followed typical word count. • The tone was optimistic and patriotic and used unifying diction. • The speeches addressed what has become universal State of the Union address …show more content…

As the “Great Communicator” (History.com Staff), Reagan knew how to keep an audience enraptured/enchanted/captivated/enthralled/delighted in the simplest way possible. He was intelligent to know that the basic structure of the SOTU address was powerful and clean. He utilized it well because it had demonstrated in the past its effectiveness in both communicating to the general public and to Congress. This structure of speech also allows the president to gently tell a story from the president’s point of view, go from general to specific, and give explanations for proposed …show more content…

This is demonstrated in Lyndon B. Johnson’s 1965 SOTU address, in which he says “…we have achieved a unity of interest among our people that is unmatched in the history of freedom…” and “We are moving… we are strong and we have proven our resolve… we know that history is ours to make.” Reagan conformed to tradition by keeping this optimistic tone. For example, from his 1983 address, Reagan states: I would like to talk with you this evening about what we can do together – not as Republicans and Democrats, but as Americans – to make tomorrow’s America happy and prosperous at home, strong and respected abroad, and peace in the world. (Reagan) This was a quote from the second paragraph of his speech, and it clearly shows Reagan’s intent: to give a balanced report and look away from political differences. This one quote would instill a sense of national pride and hope. It also unifies and caters to many different audiences by labeling all as “Americans.” It also shows his optimistic tone through hopeful diction choices, such as “peace”, “happy”, and “prosperous.” (Timary--- look at the 1984 speech also for great optimism

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