Rhetorical Analysis Essay: Jfk Inaugural Speech

1074 words 5 pages
Dean Howard
Rhetorical Analysis

John Fitzgerald Kennedy, arguably one of our greater presidents in our nation’s history, was assassinated on a Friday in the early stages of winter in 1963; however, he had accomplished much more than a man with lesser courage could have in his services to our country. One of President Kennedy’s most memorable actions while in office, actually took place very early on in his presidency; his Inaugural Speech in January of 1961. When attempting to motivate our citizens, Kennedy speaks of our citizens being “tempered by war,” and “proud of our ancient heritage,” he very successfully appeals to the emotions of his audience. Furthermore, his use of ethos quite effective when he speaks of
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Making such a drastic statement such as eliminating the human existence is appealing to the emotion of the audience by almost attempting to frighten them of the things to come if the arms race were to continue on. Returning to the beginning of the speech, Kennedy makes his first, and best, attempt at accomplishing ethos. He acknowledges the issues in his term to come, and to do so, he refers back to the forefathers of the United States. Kennedy begins by saying, “…yet the same revolutionary beliefs for which our forebears fought are still at issue around the globe…” (2) This statement is a sufficient attempt at ethos, as it proves he is knowledgeable when it comes to America’s history, but also it shows that he relates himself to the nation’s most beloved figures. Furthermore, one could also argue that this statement could accomplish logos, as he proves to be logical in the sense of recognizing global issues. Continuing along with logos, much further on Kennedy’s speech he accomplishes a very strong attempt at achieving logos. The president reassures his audience of the current goal and role of the country. He states that “…only a few generations have been granted the role of defending freedom in its hour of maximum danger. (He does) not shrink from this responsibility…” (6) Ultimately, this