Rhetorical Analysis Of Race To The Moon Speech

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Textual Analysis of “Race to the Moon” Speech
I have chosen to do a textual analysis about a speech made by John F. Kennedy, known as the “Race to the Moon” speech. President Kennedy delivered his speech at Rice University in Houston, Texas on September 12, 1962. Kennedy used many rhetorical features to convince his audience that they should support his already made decision to competitively enter the race with the world, particularly with the Soviet Union, and to help America see the benefits of this. The incredibleness of this task has paved for space exploration in today’s world. Giving credit to Kennedy, America today is trying to reach mars and we may not be as advanced today if it was not for the push this speech gave space exploration
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He first addresses the importance of the goal of his speech by making note of the timing by saying that “even though our Nation is at its smartest it has ever been and there is still so much to know” and to discover that is still “undiscovered”. Throughout his speech he references the importance of timing, referencing how important it is to continue to expand our knowledge and move forward. To further demonstrate the importance of timing, Kennedy uses a “capsule” of life, beginning with the existence of man to the day he delivered his speech. He only lists the great accomplishments of man and how detrimental each accomplishment was to the next one. Most notably when it was said “Newton explored the meaning of gravity. Last month electric lights and telephones and automobiles and airplanes became available. Only last week did we develop penicillin and television and nuclear power, and now if America 's new spacecraft succeeds in reaching Venus, we will have literally reached the stars before midnight tonight” (Kennedy). I think that Kennedy said this to prep his audience for his conclusion, that space is inevitable, and to buffer any doubt his audience may have. He demonstrated with this that America’s past achievements prepared them for their …show more content…
He made it undeniable that the world is going to explore space. The audience could have felt this exploration to be unachievable or too huge a task. To calm their doubt, he says it will be an adventure and it is going to happen (whether we initiate it) and we should lead it. John F. Kennedy gives the nation a reason to want to lead this by appealing to pathos again and without directly referring to his introduction he reminds his audience again of what people has accomplished in the past. He reminds them of the leading roles America purposely had: industrial revolution, modern invention, nuclear power. These were tasks that seemed unachievable but they happened, and with less intelligence than the world has today. Kennedy strikes emotion with his audience by reminding his audience of the fear the Soviet Union has brought by describing the moon as possibly being controlled by a “hostile flag of conquest” and “filled with weapons of mass destruction” if the Soviet’s arrive to the moon first. President Kennedy then goes to go in to more detail on why America needs to act by explaining that only man can choose whether space will be used for the good or evil of man. He makes it seem that Americans a morally responsible, again appealing to pathos, to ensure the peaceful outcome of the moon’s

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