Rhetorical Analysis of Gov. George C. Wallace Inaugural Address

George C. Wallace gave his inaugural Address on January 14, 1963, to a large crowd of primarily white, racist, religious, and relatively uneducated Alabamians. His argument relied heavily on the ideas of the people in his audience and the ideas of time period which he gave his speech. Wallace effectively used the logic of religion, appeal to emotion, and his authority as a southern Christian to successfully convey his message to his audience of segregation as a necessity for the Alabamian society to thrive economically and socially.

Wallace used logic to prove his point only on the basis of the southern perception of God. For example, he claims that southern whites have the right to maintain segregation for the prosperity of their states (including Alabama) because God is giving them the “wisdom and the strength” to fight for segregation. Wallace also uses the logic that segregation was the right way to live in the eyes of the founding fathers because they institutionalized racism by allowing slavery; therefore it is the right way to live in the eyes of God because the founding fathers were highly religious and used God as an endorsement for their actions. According to this logic it is the Southerner’s spiritual responsibility to fight for segregation. He says, “southerners played a most magnificent part interacting with great divinely inspired system of freedom… and as God is our witness Southerners will save it.” This was an effective approach to logic because his audience was mostly religious and motivated by the logic of God. If he uses God’s logic to prove his message as beneficial to society his audience will be easily convinced and would rally behind him. Wallace’s use of logic was not as essential to convincing his audience as the emotional appeal, however it was important in order to show that he has “reasoning” to some extent and is not driven solely by personal motives.

Most importantly, Wallace used the appeal of emotion and common ideals to rally his audience behind the goal to maintain segregation. He uses the justification that he wants black people to be successful… but separate: “We invite the negro citizens of Alabama to work with us from his separate racial station.” As shown here, he’s acting welcoming to the group he wants to segregate from people of his own race and economic status. This makes it seem like he has the best interest for them, and therefore his ideas will be beneficial to everyone. This also may reach his black audience as inviting, and because he establishes this connection with them, they are more likely to support him. Also shown in that quote, he uses language such as ‘we’ and ‘us’ to establish a sense of community and force the audience to assume that they agree with him because they’re on his side. Another main point of emotional connection is his use of southern pride to unite his audience under his goal. Wallace often references back to ‘our grandfathers,’ like in this quote when he says, “our grandfathers bent their knee only in church and bowed to their head only to God.” Here he is talking about the difficulties Southerners experienced after the Civil War within the Reconstruction time period. By introducing this nostalgia and pride about southern confederate leaders and forefathers, he encourages the audience to continue those values in honor of their ancestors. Wallace boasts about southern perseverance to maintain segregation, and uses this with his southern audience to show them that they should continue this fight.

In addition, Wallace uses his authority as a fellow racist, white, religious, Christian to prove his point. He assumes the values of his audience and uses his own personal experiences as a southerner and a Christian to again establish southern pride; Wallace uses this to convince his audience that he can be trusted and to show them that they should rally behind him. One instance where he establishes his religious authority is when he says, “This is the heritage of my religion, of which I make full practice… for we are all the handiwork of God.” Of course, as it is his inaugural address, he uses his political authority to show his audience the power he has to carry out his message when he says, “…as governor of our State… you stand with me… and we, together, can give courageous leadership to millions of people throughout this nation who look to the south for their hope in this fight to win and preserve our freedoms and liberties.” By saying this he is promising further segregation to the people who agree with him and showing that his segregationist sentiment will spread under his influence to the people who disagree with him. Again, he refers back to southern “heroes” as the foundation of his beliefs to establish authority; the people he references, like Jefferson Davis and Robert E. Lee, are already respected amongst his audience so if he shows that his ideals are founded by theirs then he has also gained respect and trust.

Finally, the timeliness of Wallace’s argument is essential to the effectiveness of his rhetorical devices. His purpose was to argue for the continuation of racial segregation in America and by using God and southern pride as the foundations of his argument he relied heavily on the place and time of his speech. The northern states of America would have widely disagreed and felt unconvinced by his argument; most people in America, around the world, and even Alabama would also disagree with Wallace’s argument today. When Wallace gave his speech (1963), segregation and racism were still very much supported and enforced in the southern states of America. Religion was much more reliable as a source of logic, authority, and emotional appeal. The south in America at this time was much less integrated with people from around the world and around America, so it was composed mostly of racist white people, who still looked to their confederate leaders and forefathers as a source of inspiration or pride. The minorities who did live in the south at the time (immigrants and black people) were very suppressed and were intimidated not to vote or speak up in their communities/politics.

In conclusion, George C. Wallace’s inaugural address was effective for his audience in the south of the 1960’s. By using religion, southern pride, and political authority as means of appealing to emotion, reasoning, and authority, Wallace effectively assured his audience of the message to continue segregation in America, specifically in the south.

Sources:

Newman, John J., and John M. Schmalbach. United States History: Preparing for the Advanced Placement Examination. 3rd ed., New York, Amsco School Publications, 2016.

Staff, History.com. “The 1960s.” History.com, A+E Networks, 2010, http://www.history.com/topics/1960s. Accessed 5 Mar. 2017.

Wallace, George C., Gov. “Inaugural Address.” Alabama Governor’s inauguration, 14 Jan. 1963, Montgomery, Alabama. Address.

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Is the American Dream driven by love or desire?

The entire story of the Great Gatsby centers around Jay Gatsby’s desire to return to the loving state he once shared with Daisy. In addition to this central storyline, the other main characters exhibit desire through their own desires: Tom’s desire for more success as he already has money and a wife, Daisy’s desire for higher status and more material items, and Nick’s desire to be accepted by people in a higher class than he was born into. Desire drives the idea of the American dream, not love, as proven by Jay Gatsby and the surrounding characters in the Great Gatsby.

The American Dream is built from the idea of the “self- made man” which developed in the Gilded Age. During this time thousands of immigrants came to America because of the welcoming message of the Statue of Liberty; the Statue of Liberty was symbol to show that success is possible for everyone with hard work. This idea was also shared amongst lower class Americans who wanted to reach the status of higher class people. This was shown in the Great Gatsby by Nick, who came from a middle class family in the West and traveled to the East coast in order to become wealthy and acquire position in the upper class. He explains this on page 9 when he says, “Instead of being the warm center of the world, the Middle West now seemed like the ragged edge of the universe- so I decided to go East and learn the bond business. Everybody I knew was in the bond business, so I supposed it could support one more single man.” Nick did not have a love for the bond business: he had a desire to acquire wealth and independence.

Hence, the American Dream is driven by desire. Jay Gatsby represents the American Dream in the Great Gatsby, along with the other main characters, because of the way he worked his way up to the top and achieved the classic “large suburban house, dazzling parties, high social status” American ideal that was the American Dream in the 1920’s. Jay Gatsby was driven by his desire for Daisy because of how unattainable his love for her was, as shown on pages 86-87 when Nick says, “There must have been moments even that afternoon when Daisy tumbled short of his dreams–not through her own fault but because of the colossal vitality of his illusion.” Even if Gatsby loved Daisy, he more so was in love with the idea of her, with his illusions of her, with the memory of what they once were.

Even Nick (who is relatively objective and disconnected to the other characters throughout the book) knows that Gatsby is driven by an idea of a memory which is unattainable. On page 87, Nick says, “He talked a lot about the past, and I gathered that he wanted to recover something, some idea of himself perhaps, that had gone into loving Daisy. His life had been confused and disordered since then, but if he could once return to a certain starting place and go over it all slowly, he could find out what that thing was . . .” This is a good representation of people who desire the past; often they do so because they left a piece of themselves in the past and they wish to retrieve it. So of course Gatsby could not ‘find out what that thing was’ because that thing is his love for her which has been replaced by desire.

Desire is a state of being that can only be achieved if the thing being sought is not yet achieved. The green light at the end of Daisy and Tom Buchanan’s dock represented Gatsby’s desire for Daisy; he wanted to go back to the state of love which he and Daisy once had. It is impossible to return to a state of love that once was, just like how it is impossible to reach the green light at the end of the dock. This symbol is introduced when Nick first sees Gatsby on his front lawn on page 24, and he says: “…I didn’t call to him for he gave a sudden intimation that he was content to be alone—he stretched out his arms toward the dark water in a curious way, and far as I was from him I could have sworn he was trembling. Involuntarily I glanced seaward—and distinguished nothing except a single green light, minute and far away, that might have been the end of a dock.” The symbol of the dock shows that Gatsby’s “love” for Daisy is distant and surrounded by a desire for the idea of love.

Lastly, desire goes hand in hand with greed because once the person achieves what they seek they no longer have desire, so they strive for more to continue this lust for desire. Greed was exhibited through Daisy and Tom who constantly sought more. They both had already achieved wealth and love, but Daisy wanted material items and to raise her social standing in any way possible, and Tom wanted more love and respect. In chapter seven Nick said about Daisy’s voice: “I’d never understood before. It was full of money—that was the inexhaustible charm that rose and fell in it, the jingle of it, the cymbals’ song of it . . . High in a white palace the king’s daughter, the golden girl . . .” This shows that she was so driven by her desire for material wealth that her character/voice/personality has been shaped around it. Daisy has never had to struggle: she was born into a great amount of wealth and married into it young. Gatsby’s desire for Daisy forced him to strip himself of his own character and achieve wealth instead, in order to make Daisy love him as much as she once loved the idea of his wealth.

In conclusion, the Great Gatsby is a tale of desire mistaken for love. Love is only present when those who experience it are content in it, and none of the characters in the Great Gatsby are satisfied with their success or love. The characters are representative of the American Dream in this way, and the story of the Great Gatsby shows that the American Dream is driven by desire.

October 13, 2016: First Lady Michelle Obama addressing upcoming presidential election in response to Donald Trump’s treatment of women

Michelle Obama delivered her speech to New Hampshire, transcribed by NPR (October 13, 2016), about republican nominee Donald Trump’s alleged treatment of women only days after a tape of him talking about sexually assaulting women was released. Obama gave this speech this context, and in the context of the upcoming Election day. The speech could be considered a presidential speech- after all it is endorsing Hillary Clinton being elected president. However, it really is more of an inspirational speech, rallying up her audience; Obama is telling her audience to go out and vote, and to not let Donald Trump become the President.

Through rhetorically analyzing this speech, the audience is better able to understand messages and intentions, which are very important in modern politics and in presidential elections such as this one. The speech was very effective: Obama clearly used her authoritative power as the First Lady to convince the audience that she was worth listening to, it appealed to the fear and anger of the women in the crowd, and it appealed to the logic of those who want to vote for the more logical, qualified candidate.

From the beginning of her speech, Michelle Obama established her authority (or ethos) of being First Lady as the speaker. The first anecdote used was an event held at the White House, and throughout the speech she refers to her and Barack Obama’s law degrees. At the end of the speech, she convinces the audience that every vote counts by referring to Mr. Obama’s election. Most of her authority in this speech, however, comes from her experience as a woman. The speech was a response to Trump’s alleged treatment of women, therefore it was directed at women- So the most effective speaker would be a woman. Obama uses this, constantly referring to the audience as “we,” and saying “us women.” This causes the audience to feel comfortable and agreeable with Obama’s message, and like she personally cares about them. For example, referring to Trump’s comments she said, “And I have to tell you that I listen to all of this and I feel it so personally, and I’m sure that many of you do too, particularly the women. The shameful comments about our bodies. The disrespect of our ambitions and intellect.” This kind of language and personal connection to the audience makes the listeners feel like Obama has their best interest in mind, and that listening to her message will benefit them. The audience is more likely to trust her, and follow her lead.

Nonetheless, the event that Obama spoke of at the beginning of her speech which was held at the White House, was the celebration of the International Day of the Girl and Let Girls Learn. This set up her audience very effectively (using pathos). At the beginning she said, “And we talked about their hopes and dreams. We talked about their aspirations. See, because many of these girls have faced unthinkable obstacles just to attend school, jeopardizing their personal safety, their freedom, risking the rejection of their families and communities.” Throughout the speech she referred to women’s hopes, dreams, and aspirations. This repetition helped the audience to keep a theme in their minds about women and what they face to be successful; The obstacles and risking of personal safety she refers to is an appeal to the audience’s fear. The concern in Obama’s speech is directed at the idea that people like Trump are the basis of women’s obstacles, and that if he becomes president women will be in danger. Not only that, Obama says, but also the men in this country are in danger of being influenced by Trump.

Those concerns are expressed effectively with strong diction when Obama says, “This was a powerful individual speaking freely and openly about sexually predatory behaviour, and actually bragging about kissing and groping women, using language so obscene that many of us were worried about our children hearing it when we turn on the TV.”

Michelle Obama also appealed to the logic (or logos) of the audience. She told an anecdote about how someone’s six-year-old son decided that because Trump called someone a piggy, he should not be president. Obama stated, “So even a six-year-old knows better. A six-year-old knows that this is not how adults behave. This is not how decent human beings behave. And this is certainly not how someone who wants to be President of the United States behaves.” In this quote, not only is Obama appealing to the audience’s sense of logic, but she is also using parallel structure in her sentences to give her message more emphasis. Also, she lays out her speech logically: Criticizing Donald Trump’s comments and breaking down the negative affects his presidency would have on America (negative tone); And then, slowly uplifting the audience with Hillary Clinton’s opposing views and outcomes; Finally, she ended with the inspirational message to vote for the woman that will protect everyone, who will make a difference, who will more our country forward.

In conclusion, Michelle Obama effectively delivered the right message to the right crowd; Using logos, pathos, and ethos, while incorporating repetition, parallel structure, and diction into those strategies. Her message was in the context of her audience and the events that had recently taken place. Obama used her authority as a politician, woman, parent, and professional to convey her message effectively: Vote for Hillary Clinton, because a leadership figure such as Donald Trump is dangerous to our community.

Rhetorical Analysis of Michelle Obama’s Speech- DRAFT

Days before Michelle Obama delivered her speech to New Hampshire on republican nominee Donald Trump’s alleged treatment of women, a tape of him talking about sexually assaulting women had just been released. Obama gave this speech this context, and in the context of the upcoming Election day. The speech could be considered a presidential speech- after all it is endorsing Hillary Clinton being elected president. However, it really is more of an inspirational speech, rallying up her audience; Obama is telling her audience to go out and vote, and to not let Donald Trump become the President.

The speech was very effective: Obama clearly used her authoritative power as the First Lady to convince the audience that she was worth listening to, it appealed to the fear and anger of the women in the crowd, and it appealed to the logic of those who want to vote for the more logical, qualified candidate.

From the beginning of her speech, Michelle Obama established her authority (or ethos) of being First Lady as the speaker. The first anecdote used was an event held at the White House, and throughout the speech she refers to her and Barack Obama’s law degrees. At the end of the speech, she convinces the audience that every vote counts by referring to Mr. Obama’s election. Most of her authority in this speech, however, comes from her experience as a woman. The speech was a response to Trump’s alleged treatment of women, therefore it was directed at women- So the most effective speaker would be a woman. Obama uses this, constantly referring to the audience as “we,” and saying “us women.” For example, referring to Trump’s comments she said, “And I have to tell you that I listen to all of this and I feel it so personally, and I’m sure that many of you do too, particularly the women. The shameful comments about our bodies. The disrespect of our ambitions and intellect.” This kind of language and personal connection to the audience makes the listeners feel like Obama has their best interest in mind, and that listening to her message will benefit them. The audience is more likely to trust her, and follow her lead.

Nonetheless, the event that Obama spoke of at the beginning of her speech which was held at the White House, was the celebration of the International Day of the Girl and Let Girls Learn. This set up her audience very effectively (using pathos). At the beginning she said, “And we talked about their hopes and dreams. We talked about their aspirations. See, because many of these girls have faced unthinkable obstacles just to attend school, jeopardizing their personal safety, their freedom, risking the rejection of their families and communities.” Throughout the speech she referred to women’s hopes, dreams, and aspirations. This repetition helped the audience to keep a theme in their minds about women and what they face to be successful; The obstacles and risking of personal safety she refers to is an appeal to the audience’s fear. The concern in Obama’s speech is directed at the idea that people like Trump are the basis of women’s obstacles, and that if he becomes president women will be in danger. Not only that, Obama says, but also the men in this country are in danger of being influenced by Trump.

Those concerns are expressed effectively with strong diction when Obama says, “This was a powerful individual speaking freely and openly about sexually predatory behaviour, and actually bragging about kissing and groping women, using language so obscene that many of us were worried about our children hearing it when we turn on the TV.”

Michelle Obama also appealed to the logic (or logos) of the audience. She told an anecdote about how someone’s six-year-old son decided that because Trump called someone a piggy, he should not be president. Obama stated, “So even a six-year-old knows better. A six-year-old knows that this is not how adults behave. This is not how decent human beings behave. And this is certainly not how someone who wants to be President of the United States behaves.” In this quote, not only is Obama appealing to the audience’s sense of logic, but she is also using parallel structure in her sentences to give her message more emphasis. Also, she lays out her speech logically: Criticizing Donald Trump’s comments and breaking down the negative affects his presidency would have on America (negative tone); And then, slowly uplifting the audience with Hillary Clinton’s opposing views and outcomes; Finally, she ended with the inspirational message to vote for the woman that will protect everyone, who will make a difference, who will more our country forward.

Response to “Citizen” by Claudia Rankine

In Claudia Rankine’s Citizen there is a very prominent message of accidental, or subconscious, discrimination. The readers may ask themselves whether or not they have ever been racist or if they have failed to call out racism out of pure ignorance. We are trained from the beginning of our lives to subconsciously hold social and racial prejudices. Individuals who are often discriminated against quickly learn to ignore and, “let go,” as Rankine repeats in her book, the unfair treatment they face everyday. My project is screenshots of texts, all from the Black Citizen’s perspective. The messages are between the reader and God, the reader and White Citizen’s Subconscious, and the reader and Black Citizen’s Subconscious. These messages mostly revolve around two scenarios: There is an empty seat on the bus next to the Black Citizen and a white person chooses to stand instead of sitting next to them, and a white person crosses paths with the black person on the street late at night. There are other conversations encompassing the general subconsciousness of racism and the questioning of racism as a whole, but they mostly revolve around those two scenarios. I used the Black Citizen’s perspective used in Citizen to help decide what to center the texts around and what to say. I also took from Rankine’s idea of using the second person; When the audience of my project is reading the texts they will automatically read it from their own perspective, as if they are reading conversations on their own phone. The intended result of this is that the white audience understands what it feels like to be in the Black Citizen’s shoes for a few minutes and scenarios. Hopefully the reader sees their own subconscious racism from a new perspective and is able to avoid discriminating in small, typically unnoticeable ways (and of course larger ways).

Texts between Black Citizen and White Citizen’s Subconscious: 

Texts between Black Citizen and Black Citizen’s Subconscious:

Texts between Black Citizen and God:

Response to Citizen Proposal

After reading Claudia Rankine’s Citizen I feel like my eyes have been opened to the subconscious motives and acts of discrimination. My ideas about the book are not completely clear because some of the messages blended with abstract ideas that I couldn’t quite understand. However, the poetry had a huge impact on my view of the world and I feel the need to spread those ideas to my fellow citizens. Responding to this book will help me to understand concepts of the poetry in my own way in order to feel the full impact of the words, and to help me incorporate the ideas into my daily life. Explained below is the product I will create as my response to Citizen.

Medium: I will simulate text messages between the black citizen and their subconscious, a black citizen and the subconscious of a white person, and a black citizen and god/history. In addition to this I will write an artist’s statement to explain to my audience the purpose of my piece.

Topic: The topic I am addressing in my response is the way we communicate superiority and racism through subtle and subconscious actions.

Message: The message to my audience is to be aware of your actions and their impacts, and do not let society brainwash your subconscious into enforcing discrimination.

Audience: I want all unknowingly privileged and discriminating citizens to read my piece. However, a more reasonable audience is the privileged students at my school, because they are more likely to actually look at my product and be affected by it.

First Assertion- This is Water

“In the day- to- day trenches of adult life, there is actually no such thing as atheism. There is no such things as not worshiping. Everybody worships. The only choice we get is what to worship.” David Foster Wallace said this in his commencement speech, This is Water.

When I read this my heart dropped and my breath caught, because even though I have been raised Presbyterian Christian, exposed to the Baha’i Faith, and practiced Ananda Marga Yoga, I challenge the idea of spirituality and God. I find all of that hard to commit to in faith, because I find it hard to believe. So, I was scared: What do I worship? Vanity? Materialism?

I realized that I worship the earth, and vanity, and the universe. I also realized that it is possible to not worship anything. However, when you do not live to appreciate or attain beauty, intellect, God, or anything of those other ideas that one can worship, what are you living for?

When I asked myself this, I answered back: Happiness. But then, what is happiness? Happiness is what everyone lives for, but however they define happiness defines what they worship.

Seems complicated, but the point is: If you are living for something, you are worshiping something. I agree with Wallace on that. On the contrary, not everyone lives for something. Those are the people who are not playing the game- they are often unmotivated, and commit suicide. Those people are the only ones who don’t worship anything.

Sardonically Sweating

I walk to my bus stop everyday. Still, most days sweat drips down my back by the time I get to the bus stop, because it’s hot. Not because I’m out of shape. At least that’s what I tell myself. When I’m switching to my mom’s house (as I do every other week), I haul way too many bags on the bus with me; And in turn, making my seat partner hate me. Hey, at least we have something in common. Because the AC was broken on the bus this morning, I was continuously becoming more sweaty on the ride to school. Who would’ve known: The universe hates me too! I try to relax and think about my beautiful nature filled walk to the bus stop, but all I can think about is the sweat slowly trickling down my back. I have a theory that sweat drips because it really, really wants to annoy everyone. It’s just trying to tell us to stop moving, forever. But hey, at least I’m at school now. Which also hates me.

Pigs for Power

As Napoleon transforms from a hero who saved his “comrades” to a ruthless leader, every reader is forced to question power and the effect it has on those who achieve it. In Animal Farm by George Orwell, the pig, Napoleon, assumes power over the rest of the animals. He eventually becomes a harsher and more dictatorial leader than the original farmer who took care of the animals. Was this version of power always the goal for Napoleon, or did it occur naturally through corruption as he gained control? What qualities of a person (or in this case an animal) determine whether or not they are a leader? Why do we trust our leaders so easily? What causes people to strive for power? I struggle to find answers within history, philosophy and reading.

An important concept in World History is power corruption, which has ruined almost every revolution, successful society, and great leader. Studying all of these successes and eventual failures, I question whether power corruption is a natural occurrence, or if everyone who comes to power happens to share qualities which make them corrupted in the first place. Certain personalities offer themselves to leadership. For example, natural confidence is a necessity. Intelligence and hard work often play a role, along with dominating tendencies, and unique ideas. Clover, the cow, reflected on this rise to dominance as she with her fellow animals looking out over the farm: “These scenes of terror and slaughter were not what they had looked forward to on that night when old Major first stirred them to rebellion.” (page 61)

There is a common occurrence in history where someone starts a revolution with wild new ideas. They are inspired by the poverty or oppression around them usually starting at the bottom. As they rise to power, the people who originally supported them realize that they are corrupt or have more extreme ideas than originally expected. By then it is too late, and that leader is left to dominate over the people they once suffered with. Most recent examples of this are Fidel Castro with the Cuban revolution and Stalin with the Russian revolution. It is too late because people are threatened by the powerful figure at that point. They are threatened by the idea of helplessness without that person’s leadership. They feel threatened by themselves and the people around them, and find comfort in leadership. For example, when the leaders of Animal Farm become so cruel that it dignifies another revolution, the animals are unable to revolt without the leadership of the pigs (the corrupt leaders). So, why is it that these particular people happen to be the ones to rise to power?

People can be classified as “leaders” or “followers.” The world makes us think that we should be leaders. However, some people do not want to be “leaders.” Followers can change the world, and leaders can go their whole lives without making a difference. We all go about our lives striving for power, even in the smallest of ways. As humans we feel to need to have power over something, even if it is something as small as a flower in our garden. The difference between “leaders” and “followers” is that leaders feel this need to have power over people, and are able to control others to satisfy this need.

Whether powers corrupts people (or the people who achieve it are prone to corruption) we may never know for sure. Through reading stories like Animal Farm, we can discover what power means to us and to society, but there will never be a certain answer. After many successes and failures in government, we have figured out ways to avoid destructive corruption. We can control power, or we can let power control us. One good thing about America is that we have figured out how to control power. For the most part, at least.

Fallen Comrade: Nazi Propaganda, 1933 (OPTICC 5)

Depicted with combed hair, clean and innocent faces, and chiseled jaws, this propaganda art makes the audience believe that the soldier depicted were fighting for the right cause. This piece embodies the style and message of most propaganda during World War II, especially throughout Germany and the Soviet union. A German soldier, holding a Nazi flag, looks down solemnly at his fellow soldier lying dead, who is looking up triumphantly at the painted red and purple skies.

The color of the skies may resemble the violence of warfare, which was a magnificent theme during this time, or it could be a symbol for the mourning of this particular death of the Nazi soldier. Obviously, this symbolism is meant to encourage sympathy for Nazi soldiers at war, and imply the message that the Nazis were the victims. The majority of propaganda at this time was to encourage German citizens, along with the citizens of countries aligned with Germany, that the Nazis were “The Good Guys.” The standing soldier is looking down solemnly, but still stands strongly, gripping the Nazi flag, perhaps “for support.” The soldier on the ground looks up with his mouth agape, looking peaceful and not at all in pain. This is a message to the audience that he died knowing it was for a good cause- satisfied with his own death. In reality, any death at war would most likely be a painful one.

Similar to many other aspects of this piece, this Nazi propaganda resembles the other propaganda of this time in that it does not come with a title. Perhaps when it was made and displayed, it held a title, but as it moved through books and archives, that became irrelevant to the meaning. Most Nazi propaganda titles were probably identical, and unimportant to the message to the audience. This was because the real message was either depicted in the art, or in words over the art. For example, another piece like this may have had the words (in German), “Stand with our nation, fight with our nation, die for our nation,” written in the sky. The actual caption from the archive is: “Here a Nazi looks down on a fallen comrade.” This could be a title, but it is not persuasive, and therefore would not have been used as a title during the Holocaust.

The message of this piece is that the Nazi’s are good people, experiencing pain and sadness, and standing strong through it “for the good of Germany.” This particular propaganda was showing the people of Germany that the Nazis who were creating and enforcing the extreme circumstances of World War II were experiencing sorrow, and that they were not to blame. It is influencing Germans to support the Nazi’s, to make sure that the “fallen comrade” is not forgotten, and to make sure that the Nazi’s were victorious.

This is within the context of World War II, wherein governments relied on propaganda to force their people to accept circumstances that were morally unacceptable. The Germans were persuaded to support Hitler through extreme propaganda, portraying Jewish people as terrible people, and essentially “the enemy.” Russians were persuaded to be prideful of the harsh circumstances of their communism and the militarism of Stalin’s rule. Japanese people were convinced that all other Asians were a subspecies, or animals, and deserved to be experimented on, disregarded concerning feelings, controlled, and murdered. Germans were desperately trying to take over Europe, and perhaps eventually the world. In order to do so, they needed the absolute support of their own citizens.

Painted with perfect features in front of a mourning sky, with sorrowful and perseverant expressions, this piece of propaganda art is a perfect representation of how the harsh governments such as Japan, Russia, and Germany, maintained support during World War II. When studying this war, it is important to acknowledge the manipulation of media that happened to sustain control over the people.