Rhetorical Analysis Of President Ronald Reagan's Challenger Speech

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On January 28th, 1986, the Challenger exploded after launching with delays just days before. Media coverage of the mission was extreme because of Christa McAuliffe, who was going to be the first school teacher to go on a mission to space. Many people around the globe witnessed the destruction of the space shuttle on tv. This tragedy called for President Ronald Reagan to address the issue. Through the rhetorical arrangement and style of his speech, Reagan expressed condolences to people who were affected by the event. The way the address was arranged allowed him to acknowledge what happened and advocate for future expansion into space. Reagan began his speech by empathizing with the pain that people are feeling: "Nancy and I are pained to the core by the tragedy of the shuttle Challenger. We know we share this pain with all of the people of our country. This is truly a national loss." (see para 1). In this statement, he addresses his wife to deliver relatable speech. He then expands his viewpoint to all Americans. By delivering the speech in this way, he shows himself as a person that can empathize and relate to his fellow man. After this, the speech’s …show more content…

He puts himself at the same level as family to show that his sympathy is just as heartfelt as the family of the seven. He goes on to talk about how the astronauts died a courageous death while doing something they loved; they died as "pioneers". The wording he used when he expressed his feelings caused him to sound empathetic. Afterwards, he addresses the youth that were watching; "And I want to say something to the schoolchildren of America who were watching the live coverage of the shuttle's take-off" (see para 6). He acknowledges them because younger people are the next-generation of the U.S. Also by addressing the children, Reagan creates a sense of relaxation to the

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