Back to School
Back to School: Education is very important. It determines what you can do in life. It concludes who you will become. President Barack Obama believes that education is vital and his domestic policy is still focused on education. Why does Barack Obama believe that education is so important to the United States? Why does Obama think education will make the U. S. more competitive? President Barack Obama addresses the target audience directly. The target audience is the students from kindergarten to the twelfth grade.
There are two audiences; the main one is the students at Wakefield High School in Arlington, Virginia and the second audience is all the students across the United States. The audience verifies the way he directs the audience. He utilizes an informal style where he places himself at the same level as the students. Obama opens the speech with the line”Hello everyone – how’s everybody doing today? ” (page 1 line 1). The language is quite simple and easy to understand. This is the language a six year old and an eighteen year old will comprehend.
A very essential element in the speech is that Obama knows how to get the students to identify themselves with him. He doesn’t wish for the students to look upon him as a president; he would like them to see him as one of them, one of the students. It is important that the students recognize that he knows what they are going through. ”I know that feeling. When I was young, my family lived in Indonesia for a few years, and my mother didn’t have the money to send me where all the American kids went to school. So she decided to teach me extra lessons herself, Monday through Friday – at 4:30 in the morning. (page 1 line 10 to 13). Barack Obama applies ethos. It makes him seem reliable and creditable. He appears to be more trustworthy to the audience because he shares personal experience with them. He includes them in his past by sharing a memory from his childhood. The importance of education to the United States is stated clearly in the speech. Obama states that”… if you quit on school – you’re not just quitting on yourself, you’re quitting on your country. ” (page 2 line 63 to 64). He considers education to be fundamental for America. It is the future of the U.
S. Education is a matter Obama has focused on for a long time. Even now during the election he is still focused on education, he considers that education will make the U. S. more flourishing and competitive. He knows it is not easy to do well in school and many students face challenges every day. Obama wants to encourage and inspire the students to do better. He illustrates the situations of three students Jazmin Perez, Andoni Schultz and Shantell Steve. All of them were in difficult situations and it was improbable for them to be thriving in school.
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These three students are great examples of the American dream because they worked hard and never gave up. They wrote their own destiny. They formed their own future. Obama expects all students to work hard and never give up. He applies famous people who have succeeded through hard work because of the fact that they never gave up. To be successful is not easy it is one of the toughest challenges you will face. Obama clarifies that J. K. Rowling’s first Harry Potter book was declined twelve times before it was published. He exploits J. K.
Rowling because she is someone numerous children and young people can relate to. She herself and the phenomenon Harry Potter is one of the greatest childhood memory of thousands of people. He phrases Michael Jordan’s famous quote “I have failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed. ” (page 4 line 130). This resembles success and failure. He comprehends to succeed because he knows exactly what it takes to fail. He has learned from each failure. And that is why he has succeeded so many times in his career. Michael Jordan is a basket ball legend.
Millions of people look upon him with an enormous amount of respect. He is an ideal for anyone including all children and young people involved in sports. It is very easy for children and young people to relate to J. K. Rowling and Michael Jordan because they are who everybody admires and looks up to. Obama conveys that these two succeeded because they have failed and they have gained knowledge from each failure. He would like the students to comprehend that it is alright for you to make mistakes as long as you learn from each one. He knows that very few succeed the first time.
Therefore the students must practice. Being successful is tough but Obama doesn’t want the students to give up when tougher times come along. He would like the students to try even harder. Patriotism is a crucial aspect in the speech because education is important for a nation’s competitive ability. Obama states that “… don’t ever give up on yourself. Because when you give up on yourself, you give up on your country. ” (page 5 line148 to 149). At this point in the speech the president concentrates on the students’ feelings. He accentuates the feeling patriotism. Pathos is thus applied.
Obama employs this device because he wants the audience to recognize the importance of education. This is the most important object because no matter what you want to achieve you will need an education to get to your destination. The president utilizes rhetorical questions to engage the students and make them think. He would like a response from the students. These questions have the effect that the students will try to answer the questions and take a stand to what the president phrases “So today, I want to ask you, what’s your contribution going to be? What problems are you going to solve? What discoveries will you make?
What will a president who comes here in twenty or fifty or one hundred years say about what all of you did for this country? ” (page 5 line 158 to 160). Education will help the students answer these questions. It is most important value in the speech and in Obama’s domestic policy. Many anaphoras occur in the speech. The president applies them to strengthen his points and sentences. On the second page line 39 to 45 anaphoras are employed “Maybe you could be a good writer – maybe even good enough to write a book or articles in a newspaper – but you might not know it until you write a paper for your English class.
Maybe you could be an innovator or an inventor – maybe even good enough to come up with the next iPhone or a new medicine or vaccine – but you might not know it until you do a project for your science class. ” The president portrays the future options for the students though he emphasizes that you need to focus and pay attention in school in order to know your strengths and weaknesses. Once you know your strengths you will have a better idea of the possibilities you obtain. The students will know what direction would be better to head after high school.
They have knowledge about what field they should look more into and focus on. Education is very important to the president because if the United States possesses the best education then great people will arise such as Mark Zuckerberg who founded Facebook, one of the biggest social networks. Nelson Mandela agrees with Barack Obama on the matter of education. He has stated ”Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world. ” The most significant factor is that students take responsibility for their own education and work harder towards meeting their own goals.