Rhetorical Devices In Jfk Inaugural Address

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Although America’s thirty-fifth president’s name became memorable primarily through his assassination, John F. Kennedy gave a powerful inaugural speech through his use of rhetoric. The essence of his speech nurtured the idea that the country will only flourish if everyone works to construct “a grand and global alliance” (23). To evoke emotions from his listeners, Kennedy used pathos-- the rhetorical device that purposely grasps resonating feelings and highlights them. Allusions to the Bible connected to ethos, giving credibility where needed; whereas his use of anaphora stressed the essence of his message. Kennedy’s message to America was that coming together to “lead the land we love” (27) will make our country, and the entire world, a better place. The president used anaphora -- a rhetorical device where speakers use repetition to lend significance to content -- to emphasize his points. By using the words “us,” “we,” and “our,” he gave listeners a sense of unity. He repeated the phrase “my fellow” to express that he did not look at Americans as inferior, but as equals in the hierarchy of society. …show more content…

As a Catholic, Kennedy used God to show America its own responsibility towards his main goal: peace. He told Americans that “here on earth God's work must truly be our own” (27), leaving it up to the people to unite with one another. The Bible is quoted multiple times in his speech, lending credibility towards the prophets and apostles who wrote it. Ethos was a very important device to use in this situation because although his statements were strong and confidently spoken, adding a source of reference to back up his matter gives the audience more to work

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