Obama's Speech: Back To School By Barack Obama

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Back to School is a speech which was delivered by Barack Obama, current President of the United States, at Wakefield High School in Arlington, Virginia, on the first day of school in 2009. It was also broadcast to other schools across the country. He starts with making clear that he is sympathetic with how tough it is for many of the students to get up this early, particularly the older ones who’d probably much rather have “stayed in bed just a little longer this morning ”. This is done in an attempt to make it clear to the students that he has not lost all connection to his past. That he was once a tired student as well, whose focus wasn’t always on doing well in school. Since the latter half of the speech is admonishing, he needs to make sure that the students are fully aware that he is not some highly privileged millionaire’s son who has breezed through life. He supports this further by telling of an episode from his childhood in Indonesia, where his mother woke him early in the morning to give him extra lessons because she couldn’t afford the more expensive education and therefore tried to compensate for it in this way. In a way, Obama tries to show that in comparison to his childhood they are very privileged. This is not done in a condescending manner, though, as it is simply used to show that despite difficulties in your childhood, you can still succeed if you work hard. The speech continues with mentioning the various people and institutions – parents, teachers, and

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