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ERIC Number: ED314799
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1989-Nov
Pages: 22
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Richard Nixon's "Pragmatic" Space Race: Metaphorically Crafting a National Identity.
Krug, Linda T.
President Richard Nixon decided in 1970 to commission the construction of a fleet of reusable space shuttles. Nixon's rhetoric on the space shuttle program (examined here in the light of Kenneth Burke's theory of symbolic action) shows how a philosophy of pragmatism was crafted out of a philosophy of wonderment. That one cannot now remember Nixon's contribution to the space program is a comment on the type of identification he forged for the program. With sentiment against space exploration running high, the president could no longer argue merely that a program driven by the curiosity that led Columbus to the New World needed no greater justification. With American superiority in space proven, Nixon could also not reasonably speak of the Soviet threat in space. Instead, Nixon used metaphors clustering around such themes as adventure, making investments, setting priorities, and expanding horizons. Nixon's metaphors of contemplation of rather than participation in the shuttle program showed that the program made sense, but also killed interest in the program. As a pragmatic man interested in letting the facts speak for themselves, he created an image of a contemplative person who did little more than think. (Thirty-three notes are included.) (SG)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A