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"The Gettysburg Address" Rhetorical Analysis

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Chloe Stokes

on 28 October 2013

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Transcript of "The Gettysburg Address" Rhetorical Analysis

"The Gettysburg Address" Rhetorical Analysis
"we have come to dedicate a portion of this field"
"but in a larger sense, we can not dedicate- we can not consecrate- we can not hallow this ground"
The latter quote is also an example of
This serves to further emphasize how noble the warriors' actions were. Simply by comparing the purpose of the dedication ceremony to the significance of the brave men who fought.
Chloe Stokes, Catherine Ramirez, Erica Williams, Rion Hunter
Three day battle during the Civil War. July 1st-3rd, 1863
Over 51,000 casualties
Turning point for Union
On November 19th, 1863 during the dedication ceremony for the National Cemetery of Gettysburg, Abraham Lincoln gave his famous speech, The Gettysburg Address
Lincoln's purpose was to honor the Union's fallen soldiers, and to remind the nation what they are fighting for... Freedom.
Battle of Gettysburg
Lincoln's formal
contributes to his overall reverent tone, allowing him to come across as respectable
which repeats "we" several times
"We are met on a great battle-field"
"We are engaged in a great civil war"
"We have come to dedicate"
"We should do this"
This picture emphasizes President Lincoln's (subject) importance
He is facing outwards towards his audience, standing tall and strong.
His arms are out, as if he is open to and intimate with his audience.
There are also people behind him, he's in the middle of his audience as if he is one of them, yet he stands out with importance.
Also note the audience. they are all intently gazing at Lincoln.
Their hand and facial gestures suggest theyre strongly agreeing with what he says.
Judging by the interaction between Lincoln and his audience, it is safe to say he effectively connected with his audience.
He uses words to highly praise the soldiers. Words like "hallow" "devotion" "nobly" and "honored"
"All men are created equal" is an
to the Declaration of Independence, which is of course very important to his audience. It symbolizes equality and freedom, and reminds his audience what they're fighting for.
Why do you suppose it is important for Lincoln to establish himself as respectable?
Visual Anaylysis
1) What was Lincoln's purpose in the Gettysburg Address?
a) free the slaves
b) put an end to the civil war
c) honor the soldiers who gave their lives
d) inspire America to keep fighting
e) c and d
2) Which of the following is an example of pathos that helps Lincoln achieve his purpose?
a) using deductive reasoning to persuade the audience to fight
b) stating commonly held beliefs
c) establishing himself as respectable by praising bravery
d) antithesis to further emphasize the soldiers' honor
e) repetition of the word "we" to make the listeners feel united
3) What classical appeal does Lincoln predominately use?
a) Ethos
b) Pathos
c) Logos
d) Personification
e) Onomatopoeia
Lincoln predominately uses pathos to console the audience and honor soldiers
More Questions
4) Lincoln appeals to pathos in all of the following ways besides:
a) anaphora- repeating "we" several times to make the crowd feel united
b) emphasizing the soldiers' honor and consoling friends and family
c) presenting himself with respect
d) speaking intimately to the crowd
5) How does the visual show the interaction between Lincoln and his audience?
a) Lincoln stands tall and strong, with assumed authority
b) His open body language indicates intimacy
c) Stands in the middle of everyone, like he is one of them
d) The audience is intently focused on what he is saying, most likely strongly agreeing
e) all of the above
Before we begin....
Take a moment to read The Gettysburg Address.
What do you think Lincoln's purpose is?
Look for rhetorical devices which help Lincoln achieve his purpose.
Do you see any examples of ethos, pathos and logos?
Most of Lincoln's audience was already in a strong emotional state due to the war


Gettysburg Address, Civil War, noble soldiers
Dedication Ceremony for National Cemetery Of Gettysburg
Union, Friends and family of deceased soldiers, equality activists who would support Lincoln
Unite nation, honor deceased, remind the nation what they are fighting for (freedom, equality), demonstrate the bravery of the soldiers who died for their country, inspire more citizens to be noble and fight for their beliefs.
President Abraham Lincoln, supporter of equality
Noble, Reverent, Honorable, Respectful, Consoling, Proud (of soldiers), Optimistic
It is crucial for Lincoln to establish himself as respectable and fair because the he wants people to trust what he is saying
Note that the people attending the ceremony are enervated and emotionally drained by the long drawn out war.
Lincoln's main purpose, to encourage perseverance, could not have been achieved if he did not appear trustworthy, respectable, and appreciative of his men's bravery
During the Civil War, wasn't the Union's main purpose to unite the nation?
Similarly, President Lincoln's repetition of the word "we" is meant to emphasize unity.
He aimed to make his audience feel united and purposeful.
Lincoln never once used "I" or "you" is his address. He is intimate with the crowd.
"and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, "
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