The study examined how John F. Kennedy made use of the epideictic or ceremonial nature of his June 10, 1963, commencement address at American University to advocate for a new policy, the Limited Test Ban Treaty. In order to analyze how President Kennedy made use of epideictic themes in this address, the generic method of rhetorical criticism was employed. In all, this study concluded that as a commencement speaker, Kennedy made use of the epideictic nature of his address by employing what I call epideictic progression in four distinct ways; specifically, the President attempted to: (1) unite the audience behind the value of genuine peace; (2) shift the focus of praise and blame; (3) establish the U.S. as an exemplar of peace; and (4) lay the foundation for future action on civil rights.
Ferris, Shawna, "From Cold Warrior to Peace Advocate: How John F. Kennedy Utilized Epideictic Progression in His June 10, 1963, Commencement Address at American University" (2013). Senior Independent Study Theses. Paper 1013.
Social Influence and Political Communication | Speech and Rhetorical Studies
Bachelor of Arts
Senior Independent Study Thesis
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