Discourse Analysis of Chairman Hyde's Speech Against President Clinton

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Discourse Analysis of Chairman Hyde's Speech Against President Clinton This discourse analysis attempts to answer several questions regarding Chairman Hyde's speech against the president. Firstly an attempt has been made to uncover some of the more prevalent themes and discourses in the hope that they will give some kind of enlightenment of American society and culture. Secondly, this analysis describes the many ways in which Chairman Hyde attempts to persuade his audience of his cause. The portrayed image of President Clinton is then focused on, and finally there is a discussion relating to the various social codes implied within Hyde's speech. It has been found that many of these areas overlap to a greater or lesser degree. However it is believed that the four questions should be answered separately at the risk of sounding repetitive, as this gives the reader a chance to identify and understand how ideas and themes can serve quite different purposes when expressed in different contexts and discourses, and with particular motivations. Throughout the summation of Hyde's case against the president, he draws upon several prevalent discourses. These act as an influential basis for his argument, designed to appeal specifically to other members of the senate, the counsel for the president and the chief justice. Secondly, and more importantly these discourses allow us some insight into an idealised conception of American history, political climate and culture. They represent a popular conception of the foundations of white, middle class America. Throughout the analysis, we must remember that Chairman Hyde implicitly speaks of the discourses within a tangled web of bias and intent. I am extremely sceptical as to the validity of these themes and discourses as active mentalities or social constructs within contemporary American society. Rather I believe they express an idealistic dream or goal that particularly politicians would like to believe is the foundation of American society. Expressed throughout Hyde's argument is an unmentioned yet strong sense of nationalism. He immediately starts out with a romanticised image of America's history. He asks the question whether America can "long endure" while being dedicated to "liberty" and "equality." (para 1, p.1) There are military connotations throughout the speech, which allude to a righteous fighting spirit in American history, which succeeded in gaining independence and fighting back the worldwide threat of communism and other totalitarian regimes.

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