ERIC Number: ED186959
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1978
Reference Count: 0
The American Ideology: Reflections of the Revolution in American Rhetoric. Bicentennial Monographs.
Ritter, Kurt W.; Andrews, James R.
This monograph examines the way in which ideas emerged and grew in the rhetorical process of creating an American people, and the ways in which the ideas were transformed into fundamental symbols that have exerted their influence throughout United States history. The first chapter analyzes certain discourses of the American Revolution to show the rhetorical strategy developed by the patriots with the goals of destroying the British ethos and, at the same time, creating a new American ethos. The second chapter analyzes inaugural addresses of presidents from George Washington through Jimmy Carter to show how the rhetoric of these addresses attempted generally to bring to bear the prestige of the past in attacking contemporary problems, specifically employing and exploiting the influential ideas generated by the discourse of the Revolution. The final two chapters separately examine two controversies--the imperialism debate at the turn of the twentieth century and the civil rights struggle of this century--to elucidate the impact of the continuing rhetoric of the Revolution on specific American actions. In its conclusions, the monograph notes that the rheotric of the Revolution established a durable, adaptable ideology that has presided over the evolutionary processes of the United States. (GT)
Descriptors: Civil Rights, Cultural Images, Imperialism, Intellectual History, Persuasive Discourse, Presidents, Revolutionary War (United States), Rhetoric, Rhetorical Criticism, Speeches, United States History, Values
Speech Communication Association, 5105 Backlick Rd., Annandale, VA 22003 ($5.75, SCA members 10% discount)
Publication Type: Historical Materials; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Speech Communication Association, Annandale, VA.