Barack Obama's Presidential Announcement Speech

This study guide will help you analyze Senator Barack Obama's announcement speech. We will show you examples of elements in the text that will be relevant for your analysis. In these notes, we will focus on summary, analysis, topic, speaker, audience, language, modes of persuasion, circumstances, and intention.

Presentation of the speech

Title: “Barack Obama's Presidential Announcement Speech”
Speaker: Barack Obama
Context: US Presidential elections
Date of speech: February 10, 2007

Barack Obama (b. 1961) is the former US President and senator. He served as President between 2009 and 2017. Prior to that, he was a civil rights lawyer and then an Illinois senator. This speech was given to announce his candidacy for President.

You can watch the speech here.


Below, you can read an excerpt from our study guide: 


Repetitions are frequently used throughout the speech. They help the speaker make ideas stick with the audience, and they give a sense of importance to what is being said. For example, in the next instance repetition suggests the idea of unity: “- farmers and teachers, businessmen and laborers,  all of them with a story to tell, all of them seeking a seat at the table, all of them clamoring to be heard.” 

Often, Barack Obama uses repetitions in the form of anaphora—he starts consecutive sentences with the same phrases:

That's why we were able to reform a death penalty system that was broken. That's why we were able to give health insurance to children in need. That's why we made the tax system more fair and just for working families, and that's why we passed ethics reforms… 


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Barack Obama's Presidential Announcement Speech

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