SOAPSTone Analysis Chart
Title: “Bush 9/11 Speech”____________________
Author: George W. Bush (or speechwriter)
The speaker is George W. Bush, the relatively new, then-president of the United States.
The occasion was the aftermath of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, which prompted this speech which was televised later that same day. One can assume that the nation was in a state of shock, with emotions running high.
The primary audience for this speech is the American public as a whole, with perhaps a special emphasis on those who are mourning the loss of loved ones and those who participated in the rescue efforts. The speech is also meant to reach non-American audiences. One such audience is the terrorists who carried out the attacks and any nations that supported them. He also may be speaking to other non-friendly nations as a form of warning.
One purpose Bush had was to reassure the American people that everything is under control. Also, to express condolence and provide comfort to the whole nation. Another purpose was to emphasize America’s unyielding power to other nations who might be under the impression that America was weakened by the attacks. Finally, Bush is issuing a warning to the terrorist groups who carried out these attacks and their supporters that they are in the sights of the American government.
The subject of the speech is the terrorist attacks of 9/11, and the government’s response to the attacks.
The tone of the speech starts out in a compassionate, sympathetic voice, where the president expresses grief and sorrow for those who have died. In paragraph 5 of the speech, however, the tone shifts to one of national pride and patriotism. When he describes the government’s reaction to the attacks, the tone of the speech again shifts to one of command and authority. His final tone is threatening to those who perpetrated the attacks.
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