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Personal Response to Obama's Inauguration Speech

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Introduction

Barack Obama's acceptance speech after being elected to be the USA's 44th president was powerful and moving for many reasons. The ways in which he appealed to his audience were key in the positive and emotional response he received. Throughout the speech, Obama maintains the theme of small things being able to grow into anything. In the section entitled "Victory for the People", this is very much present, as he describes how his campaign "didn't start with much money", and didn't begin in grand government buildings in the country's capital, but "in the backyards of Des Moines...and the front porches of Charleston". He talks about how working people scraped together "what little savings they had" to contribute small amounts of money to the cause. ...read more.

Middle

Obama adds to his message of unity by describing his victory as "your victory" - meaning that it is the American people who have brought about this change and who have managed to get their voices heard; although he is the one standing on the podium making an acceptance speech, it was them who succeeded in putting him there. Obama invokes images of unity throughout his speech. Multiple times, he refers to his country as the "United States of America" - using the full name though the abbreviation "USA" or just "America" would have been sufficient. He talks about their "common purpose" and uses "we" instead of "I" to instil a sense of togetherness in his audience. ...read more.

Conclusion

He also refers to his grandmother, who had died the night before, which invokes sympathy and appeals to the emotions of those listening and watching him. Towards the end of his speech, Obama repeats his most famous line, which the crowd has been shouting at him all night, and which sums up his story and message in three words: "Yes we can." In my opinion, these words, and the whole of Obama's speech, hold a promise of change which America now has a chance of keeping. His words make me hopeful for what lies ahead in the years of Barack Obama's presidency to come. ?? ?? ?? ?? Ella Gordon Personal Response to Obama Speech 7th November, 2008 ...read more.

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