Pericles Vs Reagan Speech Analysis

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Speeches for the Fallen: Pericles vs. Reagan Countless events throughout history have led to the much appreciated sacrifices of fellow humans, and one way for the community to honor this is to speak about it. Speeches such as Pericles’ Funeral Oration and Ronald Reagan’s Address to the Nation on the Explosion of the Space Shuttle Challenger have been influenced by the same ideas and structures that created a lasting effect on their audiences. Both men talk about very grave subjects: honoring men and women lost performing their duties. Pericles addressed the loss of Athenian soldiers to battles against Sparta in ancient Greek times, while Ronald Reagan gave an on-the-spot speech over the relatively recent loss of astronauts during NASA’s Challenger mission. The speeches should have made a serious and…show more content…
In Pericles’ oration, he uses we to refer to all of Athens and their accomplishments. Instead of just saying that Athens, the city, is great, he uses the personal pronoun in order to turn the reasons behind its greatness to the people. As for Ronald Reagan, it was also very important that he included himself as part of the victims. Even though he was referring to the space program in his anaphoric statements (“We don’t hide...We don’t keep secrets...We do it all up front…”), he used “we” to show how the program was a service to all of the people and not just the government. Because the president is such a high figure in American society (being in a representative position), it made the speech more engaging by including the regular citizens in a group along with someone with such a high rank. With this unity, the audiences have a greater sense of empathy; when everyone is in the same boat, it is easier to understand the emotions and ideas that one person goes through because one has gone through them first hand. This aspect greater boosts the pathos technique in the
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