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Published: 22-09-2019

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Ich bin ein Berliner (I am a ‘Berliner’)

June 26, 1963, post WWII, a time had been the United States and the Soviet Union were the world’s superpowers. The two powers fought a war of various government and economic ideologies recognized as the Cold War. For the duration of the time of the speech, Germany was a nation split into Democratic West Germany and Communist East Germany, and the Berlin Wall was built to separate these two halves of Berlin and Germany. Additionally, Western Berlin was in a state of turmoil, as the men and women suffered and started to drop all hope. Becoming that the U.S was an ally, John F. Kennedy went to West Germany to reiterate their support for the folks of West Germany. Kennedy’s message was heard loud and clear all through the world, as he wanted the world to see the problems Communism had triggered in Berlin and the troubles Communism itself causes. Kennedy managed to make a lasting impression through his eloquent use of numerous rhetorical devices and strategies.

Kennedy established as a properly-respected character in the globe. He was a Harvard alum, which proved his intelligence, and had proved his character and speaking skills for the duration of previous problems. However, Kennedy nevertheless began his speech off by further establishing character to the German folks by way of the use of ethos. Kennedy talks of how proud he is to come and speak in Berlin as the Mayor’s guest, displaying that he actually is a humble man. When individuals can see that someone is humble, they tend to trust them far more and will listen to what they say. Consequently, Kennedy additional gained the trust, and the consideration, of his audience by means of his display of modesty. Soon after establishing his character, Kennedy proceeds to use a mixture of pathos and logos to get his point across. He begins the physique of his speech with the most impactful quote of the speech: “Two thousand years ago the proudest boast was “civis Romanus sum”. Nowadays, in the world of freedom, the proudest boast is “Ich bin ein Berliner”. The line incorporates each logical and pathological rhetoric.

The very first boast that Kennedy says is Latin “I am a Roman citizen” Kennedy forms an analogy in this line in between Rome and Berlin, which is a strong type of logos. In its time, the Roman Empire was the greatest civilization in the planet, and Rome was the greatest city. Romans have been proud of their city and their nation, so Kennedy is trying to convince the individuals that getting German, and specially getting a person from Berlin, is one thing to be proud about and inform the planet. The pathos of the line comes from his use of the German language. Kennedy’s use of the German language to say “I am a Berliner” was intended to make the audience pleased that Kennedy was embracing their native language, and as a result sway the minds of the audience to back Kennedy. Through his blend of logos and pathos, Kennedy begins off on the right track to gaining the help of his German audience. Kennedy next proceeds to discuss the misconceptions of the world on the effectiveness of Communism. He attacks all of the people who think things such as “Communism is the wave of the future” or “Communism is an evil technique, but it permits us to make financial progress” and wants to show them how incorrect their beliefs are. Kennedy basically responds, “Let them come to Berlin”, or the exact same thing but in German, “Lass’ sic nach Berlin kommen.” Berlin was the prime example of the conflict amongst Communism and Democracy.

The nation and the city had been divided into the two halves and had fully damaged the lives of the people in Berlin. Kennedy wanted the globe to come to Berlin and to see the troubles that Communism had caused in the city so that they can see the issues that Communism itself causes. This complete argument is complete of logos, as Kennedy is arguing against the belief that Communism is an acceptable form of government by showing the difficulties that it has triggered for the people of Berlin. Kennedy was only in office for three years and his time in workplace integrated some of the most important and controversial troubles in American history. Most of these problems had been centered on the ongoing Cold War amongst America and the Soviet Union, and due to the massive number of international troubles that occurred, Kennedy gave several speeches in America and around the globe. He was a very gifted public speaker and excelled in the use of rhetoric in his speeches. His speech in West Berlin on June 26, 1963 is a prime example of the mastery of rhetoric that John F. Kennedy possessed. Consequently, I believe this speech was worthy of getting placed amongst the world’s ideal.
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