Guilt and redemption in a national eulogy : President Obama's "Together We Thrive: Tucson and Arizona" address as a call for mortification Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/h702qb238

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  • On January 8th, 2011 tragedy struck in Tucson, Arizona. A gunman opened fire on Representative Gabrielle Giffords' "Congress on Your Corner" event, wounding thirteen and killing six ("Arizona Shooting"). Four days later, President Obama spoke to a grieving crowd at the University of Arizona's McKale Memorial Center. This study seeks to demonstrate how the dramatistic process and the pentad provide insight into how Obama guides the nation through the process of relieving the guilt. Specifically, Obama's call for mortification instead of scapegoating as the means for victimage is examined in light of the context and organizational structure of the speech. In addition, a pentadic analysis of the speech is conducted, showing Obama's stress on the agent-agency ratio and a corresponding idealist-pragmatist outlook. Finally, conclusions are drawn about what this study adds to the academic literature on national eulogies, the presidency, and rhetorical studies at large.
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