Abraham Lincoln 's Second Inaugural Address Essay

Abraham Lincoln 's Second Inaugural Address Essay

Length: 1051 words (3 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

While it cannot be argued that Abraham Lincoln’s “Second Inaugural Address” (Address) and Emily Dickinson’s masterpiece known as the “Success is Counted Sweetest” are timeless pieces in literature, some could debate on their placement in the literary categories. Generally, Abraham Lincoln’s Address is labeled as rhetoric while Emily Dickenson’s “Success is Counted Sweetest” is considered to be a poem. The best way to distinguish one from the other would be to go through the elements of rhetorical discourse and see where the literatures show similarities, or otherwise express their differences in their style.
In short, rhetorical discourse is defined by six specific characteristics, to wit: (1) having been planned; (2) having been adapted to a particular audience; (3) having been pursued by a human motive; (4) having been responsive to a situation; (5) having been sought after in a persuasive way; and (6) having been related to a contingent issue (Herrick, 2013, p. 8). Given that persuasion is one of the biggest elements in rhetoric writing, persuasion itself is characterized by four specific elements, to wit: (1) argument; (2) appeal; (3) arrangement; and (4) aesthetics (Herrick, 2013, p. 12).
Taking a special look at Abraham Lincoln’s Address, it could be reasonably asserted that his speech required forethought. It is also evident that Abraham Lincoln’s targeted audience was those who were in contrary with, as well as in support of, the abolishment of slavery (more or less the entire nation). As he spoke, he attempted to reach out to the people and show them that although the nation had been divided on said issue, it was time to let the issue subside and move forward without judgment nor resent towards the other. Specifi...

... middle of paper ...

...e resources in the same manner.
For example, it could be noted that Lincoln uses words that are less decrypted and easier to understand, while Dickenson utilizes a more poetic style in which the reader would require more effort in uncovering the true meaning behind the passage.
Certainly, when a literature contains the four recourses known as argument, appeal, arrangement, and artistic devices, it should appropriately be known as a rhetoric literature. Notwithstanding, two rhetoric writing can be placed in different literary categories. For example, as previously stated, Abraham Lincoln’s Address is considered rhetoric, while Emily Dickinson’s “Success is Counted Sweetest” is better known as a poem. Nevertheless, both literatures are meant to persuade their audiences in a way to appeal to their emotions and leave an unforgettable mark on their minds and hearts.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Essay on Abraham Lincoln 's Second Inaugural Address

- From 1861 to 1865 the United States faced a time of great turmoil among the North and the South in various battles that came to be known as the American Civil War. During this time, the South wanted to secede from the Union so that they could keep slavery, the North however wanted to abolish slavery and keep the North and the South united. The controversy from this period sparked some of the greatest speeches, plays, books, and poems of all time, all powerful and heartfelt in their own way. Included in the literary works born from the Civil War are Abraham Lincoln’s Second Inaugural Address as well as Emily Dickinson’s poem, Success Is Counted Sweetest....   [tags: American Civil War, Abraham Lincoln, Rhetoric]

Better Essays
1393 words (4 pages)

Abraham Lincoln 's Second Inaugural Address Essay

- In a tradition dating back to George Washington, every newly-elected president gives an inaugural address at the time of his swearing into office. Many of these inaugural speeches have been given during times of war. Abraham Lincoln’s Second Inaugural Address was given on March 4, 1865, near the end of the American Civil War, Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s Fourth Inaugural Address was given on January 20, 1945, in the last year of World War Two, and John F. Kennedy’s Inaugural Address was given on January 20, 1961, during the darkest years of the Cold War....   [tags: United States, Franklin D. Roosevelt]

Better Essays
892 words (2.5 pages)

Essay on Abraham Lincoln Delivered His Second Inaugural Address

- Often of times, many of us speak without giving thought to how our words and the manner in which we speak will affect ourselves or another person. Regardless of how insignificant and harmless a few words and the tone we emphasize may seem, both hold power. In a moment, they have the power to either build up and give life or tear down and give death. In a moment, they have the power to shape and characterize the behaviors and values of both societies and individuals alike. In a single moment, they have the power to span beyond the individual who spoke it and cause, whether good or bad, repercussions that will affect a multitude of generations ahead....   [tags: World War II, Treaty of Versailles, Adolf Hitler]

Better Essays
971 words (2.8 pages)

Essay about Rhetorical Analysis Of Lincoln 's Second Inaugural Address

- Uses of Rhetoric in Lincoln’s Second Inaugural Address On March 4th, 1865, the Civil War was drawing to an end and Abraham Lincoln gave his Second Inaugural Address to become the President of the United States for the second time. At this point it was clear that the North was to win the war. Instead of boasting and bragging about his victory, Lincoln took a different route in his speech. He focused instead on putting the war behind the nation and reunifying the country. In this famous speech, he used various forms of rhetoric and literary devices to achieve this goal....   [tags: Abraham Lincoln, United States]

Better Essays
767 words (2.2 pages)

Lincoln 's First Inaugural Address Essay

- One of Lincoln’s most famous quotes is “A House divided against itself cannot stand.” This describes his presidency well- focusing on maintaining the Union. In the beginning, Lincoln tried to stay out of sensitive affairs involving the North and South in an attempt to keep them together, promising the South little interference. Despite this, he played a key role in passing the Thirteenth Amendment, doing whatever it takes to end slavery for good and ending the Civil War. Reading Lincoln’s first Inaugural Address, one wouldn’t think he would be the president to end slavery.Speaking on outlawing slavery, he says,“I believe I have no lawful right to do so, and I have no inclination to do so.” A...   [tags: American Civil War, Abraham Lincoln]

Better Essays
1028 words (2.9 pages)

Lincoln's 2nd Inaugural Address Essay

- Abraham Lincoln's Second Inaugural Address As I read the lines carefully of Lincoln's Second Inaugural Address, I wonder how a man who is elected for his second term as president with over 54% of the popular vote, and in turn, compose such an eloquent address can be assassinated little more than a month later. In reading other commentaries concerning this address it seems to me that everyone concurs that this address is one of the finest speeches ever written by a president. Lincoln wrote other memorable speeches such as his first inaugural address, and the Gettysburg Address, which are of equally high caliber, however, his second inaugural address is considered a favorite by most critics....   [tags: American History]

Better Essays
1454 words (4.2 pages)

Abraham Lincoln: A Moral Unifier? Essay

- Abraham Lincoln is a mythical figure in American culture and history because he is the President who saved the Union and abolished slavery. American admiration for him is so great that Americans have carved him into mountains and immortalized him in a Greek temple. In the Lincoln Memorial, one can find the inscriptions of the “Gettysburg Address” and “Second Inaugural Address”. To some, these speeches signify America’s rebirth as a unified political and moral country. Interestingly, these two speeches overshadow the fact that Lincoln’s words were once divisive....   [tags: Abraham Lincoln Essays]

Better Essays
1833 words (5.2 pages)

The Legacy Of President Abraham Lincoln Essay

- Have you ever wondered what the would be like, had it not been for such strong leaders. Before taking this class I had never even questioned it. Never did I know so much about history than I do today. Now I actually have interest in history, as I connect it to what is happening in this century. When I look back on certain things, I just see such an unbalanced world. Certain situations seem totally impossible according to laws and freedom put into place today. I truly believe we are at great standing in this world now because of the strong voices who served vital roles in our nation....   [tags: American Civil War, Abraham Lincoln]

Better Essays
811 words (2.3 pages)

Abraham Lincoln And The Civil War Essay

- Throughout our history, our country has been shaped by time, people, and events. People like Martin Luther King Jr and Teddy Roosevelt and events like 9/11 and the Civil War. As time goes on it was people and events like these ones that shape the face of our nation. One such event changed our nation forever; it changed the way our nation developed into what it is today. The event that was the major turning point in the 19th century was the assignation of Abraham Lincoln. The reason that it is the most influential event in the 19th century is because it changed the direction our country was headed and left deep wounds could have been made whole....   [tags: American Civil War, Abraham Lincoln]

Better Essays
1046 words (3 pages)

Essay on President Abraham Lincoln

- "Although Abraham Lincoln was President over a century and a half ago (1861-1865), he is still considered to be one of our greatest Presidents, and his legacy remains important for the nation today." By the late 1800s, sectional tensions in America had led to a split between the Northern and Southern states. During the Antebellum period, the North became more industrialized as the South increased its agricultural production. The two sections developed differing economies and ideas and by April 14, 1861, at Fort Sumter, the tensions came to a head as the American Civil War began....   [tags: President Abraham Lincoln]

Better Essays
1137 words (3.2 pages)