American Voices: An Encyclopedia of Contemporary Orators

Overview

Contemporary public speaking remains an important part of our national life and a substantial force in shaping current events. Many of America's most important moments and issues, such as wars, scandals, election campaigns, September 11, 2001, have been defined by oratory. Here, over 50 essays cover a substantial and interesting group of major American social, political, economic, and cultural figures from the 1960s to the present. Each entry explains the biographical forces that shaped a speaker and his or her ...

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American Voices: An Encyclopedia of Contemporary Orators

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Overview

Contemporary public speaking remains an important part of our national life and a substantial force in shaping current events. Many of America's most important moments and issues, such as wars, scandals, election campaigns, September 11, 2001, have been defined by oratory. Here, over 50 essays cover a substantial and interesting group of major American social, political, economic, and cultural figures from the 1960s to the present. Each entry explains the biographical forces that shaped a speaker and his or her rhetorical approach, focuses mainly on a discussion of the orator's major speeches within the context of historical events, and concludes with an appraisal of the speaker and his or her contribution to American political and social life. All entries incorporate chronologies of major speeches, bibliographies including primary sources, biographies, and critical studies and archival collections or Web sites appropriate for student research.

Entries include high profile individuals such as: John D. Ashcroft, Elizabeth Dole, Jerry Falwell, Anita Hill, Ralph Nader, Ronald Reagan, Janet Reno, Gloria Steinem, Malcolm X; and many others. Excerpts of major speeches and sidebars complement the text. Ideal for researchers and students in public speaking classes, American history classes, American politics classes, contemporary public address classes, and rhetorical theory/criticism classes.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"[F]ollows the critical moments, issues, and writings of modern American speakers through the decades."

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MBR Bookwatch

"More than 50 alphabetical essays ranging in length from five to eight pages examine the orators' speeches, styles, and contributions to political and social life. A useful introduction defines oratory, reiterates the rich history of rhetoric, and discusses the effects of television, radio, and the web on the success or failure of these speeches….Compared with former presidential speechwriter William Safire's Lend Me Your Ears: Great Speeches in History, which is arranged by theme and subject, American Voices goes into greater depth in appraisal of the speakers' skill, effectiveness, and historical contribution. Recommended for larger public and academic libraries and students of rhetoric and public speaking."

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Library Journal

"This unique reference examines more than 50 contemporary speakers from the 1960s to the present in terms of style, substance, and ability to shape American thought. All U.S. presidents since 1960 are included, as well as legendary orators such as Martin Luther King, Jr.; Wilma Mankiller; Billy Graham, Jr.; Ralph Nader; and Thurgood Marshall. More contemporary names include Christine Todd Whitman, Sandra Day OConnor, Larry Kramer, and Donald Rumsfeld….Portions of key speeches are discussed in terms of purpose and effectiveness. Well-known speeches such as Caesar Chavezs El Plan de Delano and Hillary Rodham Clintons It Takes a Village can be found in the comprehensive index by phrase or subject matter. Lists of official Web sites, selected critical studies in periodicals and books, and a chronology of major speeches follow each essay. This volume will aid history classes, debate clubs, and public-speaking forums."

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School Library Journal

"This volume is an informative resource and a useful complement to other reference works that cover many of the same individuals but from different angles. Recommended for academic and large public libraries."

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Booklist/Reference Books Bulletin

"Duffy and Leeman have compiled a collection of essays representing American orators since 1960….The 50 signed entries include every president since John F. Kennedy, politicians, activists, and jurists; despite its selective content the editors have made an admirable effort to represent all backgrounds. The introduction defines the coverage and discusses how the Internet, radio, and television have influenced rhetoric. Each essay includes a brief biography and examines key speeches made by each orator, complete with the events surrounding the speech and rhetorical analysis. Bibliographies accompanying each entry are among the strengths of this work. Information about research collections, collected speeches, biographical works, critical studies, and a chronology of the major speeches can be found in most entries. Primary sources, Web sites, books, magazines, and journal articles are among the many referenced entries. The accompanying bibliographic essay provides general sources on oratory and rhetoric that can be used by students and critics alike. This title will be useful for courses in public speaking and rhetoric, American history, and political science. Recommended. Lower-level undergraduates through faculty/researchers."

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Choice

"[F]or the right collection this would make a valuable addition. The biographies could be particularly useful in guiding American studies reading."

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Reference Reviews

"This well-researched reference text contains entries for 58 U.S. orators whose differing styles, messages, and abilities provide a good glimpse into the richness of American oratorical culture….American Voices provides an important resource for the study of contemporary U.S. oratory….The depth of research, insight, and references in the volume will impress students, researchers, and teachers alike. American Voices stands as a welcomed addition to the field, and will be a reference source that promises to have staying power."

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The Review of Communication

Library Journal
Eighteen years after the publication of Greenwood's American Orators of the Twentieth Century: Critical Studies and Sources comes this book on contemporary speakers. Editors Duffy (rhetoric, California Polytechnic State Univ.) and Leeman (communication studies, Univ. of North Carolina, Charlotte)-authors/editors of previous Greenwood titles within the "Great American Orators" series-cover major American social, political, economic, and cultural figures from the 1960s to the present who exemplify contemporary American oratory, e.g., Hillary Rodham Clinton, Jerry Falwell, Sandra Day O'Connor, and Malcom X. More than 50 alphabetical essays ranging in length from five to eight pages examine the orators' speeches, styles, and contributions to political and social life. A useful introduction defines oratory, reiterates the rich history of rhetoric, and discusses the effects of television, radio, and the web on the success or failure of these speeches. Following the entries, an "Information Sources" section directs readers to secondary sources that include research and archival collections, articles, selected biographies, audiovisual materials, and web sites. Random checks of the web listings found the majority to be valid. Bottom Line Compared with former presidential speechwriter William Safire's Lend Me Your Ears: Great Speeches in History, which is arranged by theme and subject, American Voices goes into greater depth in appraisal of the speakers' skill, effectiveness, and historical contribution. Recommended for larger public and academic libraries and students of rhetoric and public speaking.-Bobbie Wrinkle, McCracken Cty. P.L., Paducah, KY Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780313327902
  • Publisher: Greenwood Publishing Group, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 12/1/2005
  • Pages: 512
  • Product dimensions: 7.00 (w) x 10.34 (h) x 1.43 (d)

Meet the Author

BERNARD K. DUFFY is Professor of Rhetoric in the Communication Studies Department at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, and author/editor of several previous Greenwood titles. He was also co-series editor for the Great American Orators reference series.

RICHARD W. LEEMAN is Professor and Department Chair of Communication Studies at the University of North Carolina, Charlotte. He is the author/editor of three previous Greenwood titles, including African-American Orators: A Bio-Critical Sourcebook (1996).

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Table of Contents

John D. Ashcroft 1
Elizabeth M. Birch 8
Patrick J. Buchanan 16
Georgia Herbert Walker Bush 22
George Walker Bush 31
Robert Carlyle Byrd 39
Stokely Carmichael (Kwame Toure) 46
James Earl "Jimmy" Carter 53
Cesar Estrada Chavez 61
Ward L. Churchill 70
Hillary Diane Rodham Clinton 77
William Jefferson Clinton 84
Mario Matthew Cuomo 97
Thomas Andrew Daschle 104
Angela Yvonne Davis 111
Alan Dershowitz 119
Elizabeth Hanford Dole 126
Marian Wright Edelman 133
Joycelyn Elders 141
Jerry Falwell 149
Louis Abdul Farrakhan 155
Gerald Rudolph Ford 164
Albert Arnold Gore, Jr. 169
William Franklin (Billy) Graham, Jr. 177
Anita Faye Hill 187
Jesse Louis Jackson 192
Lyndon Baines Johnson 203
Sonia Johnson 211
Barbara Charline Jordan 217
Edward Moore Kennedy 224
John Fitzgerald Kennedy 231
Robert Francis Kennedy 238
John F. Kerry 247
Martin Luther King, Jr. 258
Larry Kramer 270
Winona LaDuke 277
Andre Geraldine Lorde 285
Wilma Mankiller 293
Thurgood Marshall 299
William (Bill) Paul McCartney 307
Russell Means 316
Harvey Bernard Milk 324
Ralph Nader 330
Richard Milhous Nixon 338
Samuel Augustus Nunn 346
Sandra Day O'Connor 353
H. Ross Perot 360
Colin Luther Powell 368
Ronald Wilson Reagan 378
Janet Reno 390
Donald H. Rumsfeld 398
Antonin Scalia 407
Al Sharpton 414
Gloria Steinem 422
George Corley Wallace 429
Alyce Faye Wattleton 434
Christine Todd Whitman 440
Malcolm X 449
Bibliographic essay 455
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