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American Honors CMST 220 - Rhetorical Analysis Paper  

This research guide will help you complete the Rhetorical Analysis Paper assignment in American Honors CMST 220.
Last Updated: May 10, 2016 URL: http://libguides.pierce.ctc.edu/ahcmst220 Print Guide RSS Updates

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Senator John F. Kennedy

Remarks of Senator John F. Kennedy Announcing his Candidacy for the Presidency of the United States, January 2, 1960. Courtesy of http://www.jfklibrary.org

 

Your Rhetorical Analysis Paper

In order to complete this assignment, you will need to:

  • Select a presidential address (any of the four styles discussed in class) from current day or history that offers an opportunity to analyze elements of the speech making process.
  • Obtain a manuscript copy of the speech and/or video footage if possible or relevant
  • Obtain background information regarding the purpose of the speech, the setting, the speaker objectives, the audience perceptions/expectations, the reactions to the speech, and the impacts of the speech.

In the text of the paper, you will need to:

  • Formulate a position/opinion you have about the speech.
    • Sample: The Gettysburg Address was originally poorly received by the American public because it failed to adequately address the occasion.
  • Include a preview statement.
    • Sample: This paper will explore the audience’s perceptions of the address’s inadequacies by looking first at the topic expectations, second, expectations of the speaker, and finally expectations for the occasion.
  • The paper should offer examples and analysis that supports the writer’s opinion.
  • The paper should incorporate the vocabulary and concepts of the course.

Why are you doing this assignment?

Such an assignment offers the students a non-oral performance venue to demonstrate their knowledge of  course concepts as well as a chance to see public speaking in a context outside the classroom. It’s also another tool by which they can use the persuasive process—the paper itself is trying to make and prove a particular argument.

 

Resources

  • Use at least 4 different sources to support your points.
  • Resources should be abundant through the internet and through the library.
  • Library resources have been set aside for this project, so please use them!
  • Some resources have also been loaded on line on our Canvas site.
 
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