Presentation is loading. Please wait.

Presentation is loading. Please wait.

Rhetorical Analysis of Lincoln’s Greatest Speech The Second Inaugural Address March 4, 1865.

Similar presentations


Presentation on theme: "Rhetorical Analysis of Lincoln’s Greatest Speech The Second Inaugural Address March 4, 1865."— Presentation transcript:

1 Rhetorical Analysis of Lincoln’s Greatest Speech The Second Inaugural Address March 4, 1865

2 President Lincoln delivering his inaugural address on the east portico of the U.S. Capitol, March 4, Photographer: Alexander Gardner

3 Essential Questions The questions that Lincoln wrestles with are: Who is responsible for this war? * Who is responsible for this war? * What makes this war a just one? What makes this war a just one? *White, Jr., Ronald C. Lincoln’s Greatest Speech: The Second Inaugural Address. New York: Simon and Schuster (2002).

4 Paragraph Two On the occasion corresponding to this four years ago, all thoughts were anxiously directed to an impending civil war. All dreaded it, all sought to avert it. While the inaugeral [sic] address was being delivered from this place, devoted altogether to saving the Union without war, insurgent agents were in the city seeking to destroy it without war—seeking to dissole [sic] the Union, and divide effects, by negotiation. Both parties deprecated war; but one of them would make war rather than let the nation survive; and the other would accept war rather than let it perish. And the war came.

5 Repetition and Crescendo On the occasion corresponding to this four years ago, all thoughts were anxiously directed to an impending civil war. All dreaded it, all sought to avert it. While the inaugeral [sic] address was being delivered from this place, devoted altogether to saving the Union without war, insurgent agents were in the city seeking to destroy it without war—seeking to dissole [sic] the Union, and divide effects, by negotiation. Both parties deprecated war; but one of them would make war rather than let the nation survive; and the other would accept war rather than let it perish. And the war came.

6 Anticlimax or Decrescendo And the war came. To me, it’s interesting to consider that the war becomes an agent of its own action in this statement. No one appears to have waged it, no one desired it, and everyone deprecated it. Yet, it seems to have come of its own accord.

7 Alliteration On the occasion corresponding to this four years ago, all thoughts were anxiously directed to an impending civil war. All dreaded it, all sought to avert it. While the inaugeral [sic] address was being delivered from this place, devoted altogether to saving the Union without war, insurgent agents were in the city seeking to destroy it without war—seeking to dissole [sic] the Union, and divide effects, by negotiation. Both parties deprecated war; but one of them would make war rather than let the nation survive; and the other would accept war rather than let it perish. And the war came.

8 Thesis-Antithesis

9 Paragraph Three What must Lincoln conclude about slavery as a cause of the war from these two statements? What must Lincoln conclude about slavery as a cause of the war from these two statements? One eighth of the whole population were colored slaves, not distributed generally over the Union, but localized in the Southern part of it. These slaves constituted a peculiar and powerful interest. All knew that this interest was, somehow, the cause of the war. One eighth of the whole population were colored slaves, not distributed generally over the Union, but localized in the Southern part of it. These slaves constituted a peculiar and powerful interest. All knew that this interest was, somehow, the cause of the war. Neither anticipated that the cause of the conflict might cease with, or even before, the conflict itself should cease. Neither anticipated that the cause of the conflict might cease with, or even before, the conflict itself should cease.

10 Jeremiad A literary work or speech expressing a bitter lament or a righteous prophecy of doom. A literary work or speech expressing a bitter lament or a righteous prophecy of doom. Jeremiah: (Old Testament) an Israelite prophet who is remembered for his angry lamentations (jeremiads) about the wickedness of his people (c BCE). Jeremiah: (Old Testament) an Israelite prophet who is remembered for his angry lamentations (jeremiads) about the wickedness of his people (c BCE).

11 Judge not that we be not judged. It may seem strange that any men should dare to ask a just God’s assistance in wringing their bread from the sweat of other men’s faces, but let us judge not, that we be not judged. chiasmus : sometimes described as inverted parallelism. For example, “ Mankind must put an end to war or war will put an end to mankind.” —John F. Kennedy

12 Matthew 7:1, KJV Judge not, that ye be not judged. These words allude to Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount, in which he advocates an ethic rooted in humility and compassion. * *White, Jr., Ronald C. Lincoln’s Greatest Speech: The Second Inaugural Address. New York: Simon and Schuster (2002).

13 Paragraph Three continued What must Lincoln conclude about the cause of the war from this question? What must Lincoln conclude about the cause of the war from this question? If we shall suppose that American Slavery is one of those offences which, in the providence of God, must needs come, but which, having continued through His appointed time, He now wills to remove, and that He gives to both North and South, this terrible war, as the woe due to those by whom the offence came, shall we discern therein any departure from those divine attributes which the believers in a Living God always ascribe to Him? If we shall suppose that American Slavery is one of those offences which, in the providence of God, must needs come, but which, having continued through His appointed time, He now wills to remove, and that He gives to both North and South, this terrible war, as the woe due to those by whom the offence came, shall we discern therein any departure from those divine attributes which the believers in a Living God always ascribe to Him?

14 Lincoln as Poet? Fondly do we hope— Fervently do we pray— That this mighty scourge of war May speedily pass away. Lincoln’s language seems archaic to a contemporary ear, so consider that one would generally order the words this way: We fondly hope. I think restructuring the words into contemporary syntax gives a sense of Lincoln’s intention in his syntax.

15 Parallel Structure With malice toward none; (phrase + phrase) with charity for all; (phrase + phrase) with firmness in the right, (phrase + phrase) as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation's wounds; to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan to do all which may achieve and cherish a just, and a lasting peace, among ourselves, and with all nations.

16 Indicative and Imperative Moods Indicative : The most common mood in English. The indicative mood indicates what is. For example, John eats an apple, or God gives us the power to see the right. Indicative : The most common mood in English. The indicative mood indicates what is. For example, John eats an apple, or God gives us the power to see the right. Imperative : Expresses direct commands, requests, and prohibitions. For example, John, eat apples until you are content, or let us strive on to finish the work we are in. Imperative : Expresses direct commands, requests, and prohibitions. For example, John, eat apples until you are content, or let us strive on to finish the work we are in. Pay attention to the verbs of the last paragraph: finish, bind, strive, care, do, achieve, cherish. Pay attention to the verbs of the last paragraph: finish, bind, strive, care, do, achieve, cherish. It’s probably also important to note the result of all this action: a just and a lasting peace, among ourselves, and with all nations. It’s probably also important to note the result of all this action: a just and a lasting peace, among ourselves, and with all nations. Consider that shifts from the indicative to the imperative moods are common in most sermons. Consider that shifts from the indicative to the imperative moods are common in most sermons.

17 Closure So, what does Lincoln conclude? So, what does Lincoln conclude? 1. Who is ultimately responsible? 2. What makes this war just?

18 Creepy Fact about J.W. Booth John Wilkes Booth, Edwin Booth, and Junius Brutus Booth, Jr. in Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar in J.W. Booth played Mark Antony. John Wilkes Booth, Edwin Booth, and Junius Brutus Booth, Jr. in Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar in J.W. Booth played Mark Antony.


Download ppt "Rhetorical Analysis of Lincoln’s Greatest Speech The Second Inaugural Address March 4, 1865."

Similar presentations


Ads by Google