Analysis Of George Nelson 's ' The Death Of Civilians ' Essay

Analysis Of George Nelson 's ' The Death Of Civilians ' Essay

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Throughout the nation catastrophes occur on a daily basis; however there are a few catastrophes that have taken national precedence and left a traumatized nation. Most usually these catastrophes are an act of terrorism. Michael Nelson (2010) describes the nature of such terrorism catastrophes as disconcerting, unanticipated and that unnerve “the country’s sense of safety and identity” (p. 20). When such “a traumatic event results in the death of civilians” and “calls the nation’s institutions or values into question” the nation as a whole looks to their leader, our president, to offer solace and calm through a responsive speech (Campbell and Jamieson, 2008, p. 102). In Presidents Creating the Presidency, (2008) the authors have labeled these speeches as a national eulogy in which they usually occur at the sight of the tragedy itself.
Their primary goals of this eulogy is to help the nation come to terms with the death of a loved one, with the president helping the nation to make sense of the tragedy, “transform symbols of destruction to symbols of renewal” and finally to explain how he ensures it will not happen again (Campbell and Jamieson, 2008, p. 80).
Until September 11th, the most devastating of catastrophes or acts of terrorism that drew a nation together was the Oklahoma City Bombing. Within this bombing over 300 buildings were damaged and 168 people perished, including nineteen children. It was during this time that the nation looked to their president, Bill Clinton for solstice and calm. On the fourth day after the incident the president addressed the nation with his national eulogy that “consoled the bereaved, affirmed the community’s values, and exhorted the audience to be virtuous” (Hewett, 2008, p. 91).

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...he nation, as well as lift the nation up so that the citizens do not dwell on the tragedy, but to rise from the tragedy. While mourning they need to remember to stay strong and to come together as there are strength in numbers. Each president does this through a eulogy that displays ethos and pathos through tone, quotations, repetition and a “unique blend of eulogistic content and elements” (Campbell and Jamieson, 2008, p. 75). In times of tragedy it is the president’s job to offer solace and calm through a responsive speech. Their primary goals of this speech or eulogy is to help the nation come to terms with the death of a loved one, with the president helping the nation to make sense of the tragedy, “transform symbols of destruction to symbols of renewal” and finally to explain how he ensures it will not happen again (Campbell and Jamieson, 2008, p. 80).

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