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How Does Barack Obama Use Language to Create Impact in His Speech



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    How does Barack Obama use language to create impact in his speech? Barack Obama’s acceptance speech was spoken on the 4th November 2008 after he was elected president. His speech included many different rhetorical devices to enable that it was most suited to the situation and have a huge impact on the Chicago audience but most importantly, on the world. Throughout Obama’s speech he continuously creates a sense of friendship with his audience in a number of ways. In terms of structure he addresses America as ‘our country’ and endures to do so, directly including the audience in his success.

    This creates an instant link between the crowd and himself symbolising together as one. Addressing the audience in this formality instantly forms bonds with the audience on a personal approach and makes them feel as if they are too in almighty power. This technique builds excitement and adrenaline in the viewer as they watch, emphasising the fact they are in a new era of presidency. Furthermore the use of ‘triples’ is used commonly at the end of each topic during Obama’s speech to emphasise the main point of each paragraph.

    This technique is used effectively to allow everyone in the world to relate to it ‘block by block, brick by brick, calloused hand by calloused hand’. Demonstrating the new leadership will be hard work although the tasks upon them will be definitely achievable which creates an instant link between the people and himself. Although this quote is only limited to American citizens ‘in the remaking of the nation’, Barack also includes the world in his next paragraphs.

    Forceful phrases are also used in combination to create the perfect acceptance speech whilst talking to the world. Obama highlights his ambitions and goals as elected president sharing the destiny as many who live on earth, ‘to those who tear the world down- we will defeat you. To those who seek peace and security- we support you’. These two sentences have the effect to unite all beings as one, supporting those in struggle and reflecting hope on the wipe-out of terrorism.

    The statements are bold showing certainty through his words showing that everything is not only possible but most definitely achievable. Most importantly, Obama’s repeated phrase ‘Yes we can! ’ greatly took huge effect amongst the people in America. As he states facts about significant parts to history on racism and sexism these words ‘Yes we can! ’ continue to emphasise the power of hope. ‘Yes’ is an extremely positive word supposed to no and ‘we can’ involves all of the people in a sense of pride as previous, thought to be impossible asks have been achieved as new ones are laid out before them which seem more realistic through these words. Obama knows he cannot change the world on his own so by gaining trust and confidence from the people, consider greatness to come. Evidently, Barack Obama successfully uses the correct techniques to make sure his speech unites all supporters in the world as one. Capturing the audience’s expectations and persuading everyone, everywhere that he can most certainly make all possible as president of the United States of America.

    How Does Barack Obama Use Language to Create Impact in His Speech. (2016, Nov 25). Retrieved from

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