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"We choose to go to the moon"

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by

Haley Cagle

on 17 March 2014

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Transcript of "We choose to go to the moon"

What is the historical content of this speech?
The United States was in a "space race" with Russia. We were competing to see who would get to the moon first.
What makes the speech so remarkable & memorable?
He is speaking about taking a huge step for man and an advancement in space exploration. Because of this, we were the first to step on the moon.
Why is the speech still venerated today?
This was a technological advancement for the United States of America and because of this great step we as a nation can now explore space.
"We choose to go to the moon"
Who is speaking and who is he or she talking to?
John F. Kennedy is speaking and he speaking to President Pitzer, The Vice President, The Governor, Congressman Thomas, Senator Wiley, Congressman Miller, Mr. Webb, Mr. Bell, scientists, distinguished guests, and others in the audience at Rice Stadium in Houston, TX.
How was the speech received by the audience?
The audience is interested in is speech and are very excited over the advancements made by the United States.
What is the speaker's purpose?
To persuade the audience to invest in the NASA exploration and to inform everyone on how the program is doing and the advancements thus far.
What is the tone of the speech?
He was persuasive when explaining the needs and success of the space program.
What is the mood?
The mood of his speech is inspiring and competitive. It was a very big deal to be the first person to the moon and everyone is so thrilled for the U.S. to be the first ones.
Is there a tone or mood shift in the speech?
No there is not, the whole speech the tone and mood remain the same. Inspiring, competitive, and persuasive.
Identify the ethos, pathos and logos of the speech.
The Ethos appeal is inferred by the audience because the speaker, President Kennedy, was one of the best liked presidents in all of U.S. history and he had shown that he could handle many different situations in the past, like the Cuban Missile Crisis.
Kennedy then used the Pathos appeal to instill pride in the U.S. audience by telling them that they were headed to the moon because it was a worthy challenge for the American people and they could not be left behind in the space race, otherwise they would lose their position of power in the world.
President Kennedy uses the Logos appeal to show the American people and the rest of the world that even though it is expensive and dangerous to go into space it is worthwhile to do so in order to promote peace and cooperation, and to further our understanding of the universe around us. Then near the end of the speech Kennedy goes back to the Logos appeal by comparing the cost of the space program to be about what people in the United States spent of tobacco products every year. This not only helped show how much money they were actually spending, but to put it in easy to understand terms for his audience. Through his choice of words and the different appeals Kennedy uses in this speech he creates an argument which is both well put forth and very convincing.
Identify & explain the rhetorical strategies used.
Kennedy uses rhetorical questions poignantly to rouse the audience and to engage them in thought: “But why, some say, the moon? Why choose this as our goal? And they may well ask why climb the highest mountain? Why, 35 years ago, fly the Atlantic? Why does Rice play Texas?”
Kennedy creatively uses a metaphor in condensing Man’s greatest advancements over the past 50,000 years into half a century.
Kennedy uses alliteration in his speech to get the audiences attention and also to make the speech memorable. Examples of this rhetorical device are:
"Change and challenge", "Hazard and hostile", and "Cigarette and cigars".
Kennedy uses the device antithesis to get the readers to compare the different ideas made. An example of this used in this speech is: "The greater our knowledge increases, the greater our ignorance unfolds."
Similes are also used in this speech to make descriptions more vivid. Some examples of similes Kennedy uses in the speech are: "as wide awake as a city block", "as long as two lengths of this field", and as tall as a 48 story structure".
Another device used is anaphora. This is used to lay emphasis on ideas made by the United States and the space program. Some examples of this are: "college noted for knowledge, in a city noted for progress, in a state noted for strength", "new ignorance, new problems, new dangers", "the first waves of the industrial revolutions, the first waves of modern invention, and the first waves of nuclear power".
How do you rate the overall effectiveness of the speech?
The overall effectiveness of John F. Kennedy's "We choose to go to the moon" speech is inspiring. His speech was written and spoken to inform Americans of the ideas and mission of the space program and United States government. The people of America love the ideas and are very excited to be the first people to put a man on the moon. The ideas and missions mentioned in this speech were conducted and very effective, because we, America, won the "Space Race" and we succeeded in our goals as a country. People even today are very inspired by this speech and it will forever leave its mark on our country and in our hearts.
Full transcript