美国总统演说的文体学研究——以奥巴马的演讲为例A Stylistic Research on American President’s Address ——A Case Study of Barack Obama’s Address毕业论文
American presidential address is a significant type of public speech. The systematic analysis of American presidential address has significant practical and pragmatic value. This paper studies general stylistic features of American presidential addresses given by Obama from linguistic dimensions, such as lexical level, syntactical level and rhetorical devices. The paper will choose two Obama’s victory addresses in 2008 and 2012 and two inaugural addresses given in 2009 and 2013 as corpus. Another analysis focuses on the contextual situation of address.
The major findings of this study are as follows: At the lexical level, nominalization words used a little, because Obama’s public speech is very formal. At the syntactical level, the short sentences take the majority of the speech because they are much easier to make a rhyme of strength and be understood and more familiar to public. There are some rhetoric devices used in Obama’s speech such as parallelism, repetition, simile and metaphor and so on. These devices are helpful to gain the audience’s support and attract their attention. The contextual situation must be related to the discourse with the background of address. In other words, an accurate understanding of social cultures, traditional customs and historical background will help audiences to understand the address.
Keywords: English public speech; stylistic features and analysis; contextual analysis
1 Introduction 1
1.1 Background and Objective of Study 1
1.2 Method of Study 2
1.3 Structure of Paper 2
2 Literature Review 3
2.1 Study on Public Speech Abroad 3
2.2 Study on Public Speech at Home 4
3 Stylistic Features of the Address 6
3.1 On the Lexical Level 6
3.2 On the Syntactical Level 8
3.2.1 The length of sentence 8
3.2.2 The type of sentence 9
3.3 On the Rhetorical Devices 11
3.3.1 Parallelism 11
3.3.2 Repetition 11
3.3.3 Simile and Metaphor 11
3.3.4 Rhetorical Question 12
4 Contextual Analysis 13
4.1 Field of discourse 13
4.2 Tenor of discourse 13
4.3 Mode of discourse 14
5 Conclusion 15
A Stylistic Research on President’s Address ——A case study of Obama’s Address
1.1 Background and Objective of Study
Public speech can influence the way of people’s thinking through the communication to reach the purpose of addresser. The public speech given by the American president is especially eye-catching in the world. In the president’s address, the president should consider diversity of audiences who may come from different walks of life, such as scientist, businessman, housewife and blue collar workers. Obama is the first black president of America and also gains his second term. Obama’s excellent political ability and insight is the critical elements to boost his success, and his splendid and skilled public addresses also play a vital role to promote his success in his terms. Obama’s address has extremely strong inspiration, his languages are very sonorous and forceful with clear viewpoint. Moreover, the elegant and easy-to-understand language contained deep insight, shows his skillful capacity of using language. People can also get his excellent politics ability and personality charm in the address.
This paper will choose two Obama’s victory addresses in 2008 and 2012 and two inaugural addresses given in 2009 and 2013 as corpus. When Obama took office in 2009, America was hit by serious financial crisis and Americans were lack of confidence. In his second term, America’s supremacy was challenged and America suffered a series of terrorist crisis both at home and abroad. Therefore, under the situations Americans could feel the inspiration, courage and power from Obama’s victory addresses. (Showstack, 2012) Nowadays, the study of American president’s addresses can greatly improve EFL learners’ reading and writing abilities, and also help students to approach the American culture in an effective way.