Rhetorical Devices In Obama's Second Inaugural Speech

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Nearly a million of bodies piled closely together in front of the Capitol in Washington D.C, or sat at home eyes fixated on their TV screens on January 21, 2013, awaiting the inaugural speech from Barack Obama for the second time. Waiting excitedly, yet patiently for the President of the United States to take his spot in front of them and give yet another speech of victory. Many people before have said that Obama was one of the best orators while giving speeches as president, this was his chance to show the people that they were right once again. In Obama’s second inauguration speech he had effectively argued the truths about the challenges that the American people were soon to face and how to change those dreaded challenges. Throughout the…show more content…
Obama uses imagery to describe certain hardships that the people have faced in the past and recently to draw certain emotions from his audience. Obama says, “Through blood drawn by lash and blood drawn by sword, we learned that no union founded on the principles of liberty and equality could survive half-slave and half-free. We made ourselves anew, and vowed to move forward together.” He uses these vivid and lively words such as, “Through blood drawn by lash” to describe all the times that the people have put blood, sweat, and tears into making this place we call America, which is the land of the free. It would not have been possible to live in freedom if the people were living in a land that is “half-slave and half-free.” He tells the story of what the people have been through to accomplish equality using very little words. Using those descriptive words helped paint a picture in the audience’s head and helped them better understand what he is speaking. This had a huge impact on the people’s perspective, especially on the people who once had or still felt oppressed at that time. He does this by using certain detail words to give the people an image in their head of past people sacrificing their all to achieve equality and providing specific words that appeal to the audience, for that reason he can establish a certain connection of trust between him and the
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