Rhetorical Commentary Essay

765 words - 4 pages

On April 11, 1962, as the United States was emerging from a recession, President John F. Kennedy held a news conference regarding contemporary price increases in steel. In an effort to convince steel companies to reduce and stabilize their prices during America’s time of economic distress. To do so, President Kennedy used various rhetorical strategies, such as: logos, diction, and polysyndenton, in his commentary. However, although there were times when he used these rhetorical strategies singularly, President Kennedy mostly used them simultaneously, making it increasingly difficult for his listeners to argue against his perspective.
Furthermore, being one of the most reiterated, and highly ...view middle of the document...

For instance, in paragraph two, he said, “… the American people will find it hard, as do I, to accept a situation in which a tiny handful of steel executives whose pursuit of private power and profit exceeds their sense of public responsibility can show such utter contempt for the interests of 185 million Americans.” In this statement, President Kennedy specifically used the words “a tiny handful” to suggest that such a small amount of people have so much control over the economic outcome of the country. Why did he not use the words “a few”? The reason is because it would not have had the same emphasis, potentially causing the audience to not have the same amount of interest in what he was trying to point out. Additionally, he included the specific amount of Americans which would have been affected, “185 million,” as to show the contrast between the “tiny handful” of people in control, and the massive amount of people which could be affected by their decisions. Suggesting; why should such a small group of individuals have the power to negatively affect a whole country for their own personal benefit?
In addition to logos and diction, President Kennedy applied proper use of polysyndenton throughout his commentary. He continuously used the conjunction “and” in an effort to emphasize the numerous potential...

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