Honored Guests: Citizen Heroes and the State of the Union

Honored Guests: Citizen Heroes and the State of the Union

by Stephen Frantzich
     
 

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In 1982, Ronald Reagan invited Lenny Skutnick-the government employee who dove into the icy waters of the Potomac River to rescue passengers following the crash of Air Florida Flight 90-to sit with First Lady Nancy Reagan in the House of Representatives balcony during the State of the Union address. Since that time, presidents have found it useful during major… See more details below

Overview

In 1982, Ronald Reagan invited Lenny Skutnick-the government employee who dove into the icy waters of the Potomac River to rescue passengers following the crash of Air Florida Flight 90-to sit with First Lady Nancy Reagan in the House of Representatives balcony during the State of the Union address. Since that time, presidents have found it useful during major addresses to recognize ordinary citizens responsible for extraordinary acts of citizenship. In this book, Stephen Frantzich tells the fascinating stories of forty of the heroes who have earned this presidential recognition and explores the larger context of whether they represent a presidential gimmick or a touchstone with the American spirit. Taken together, the stories of how they got there, their decision to allow themselves to be used as symbols, and the impact of the recognition tells a great deal about the presidency, politics, and the role of heroes in American society.

Editorial Reviews

Janette Kenner Muir
Since Ronald Reagan began recognizing every day heroes during his State of the Union address, the practice has become a regular expectation of this rhetorical genre. Stephen Frantzich takes us on a historical journey, telling the story of people chosen to illustrate sweeping lessons of heroism, bravery and daily hardships. In doing so, we gain greater insight into the symbolic and visionary power of an administration to set the tone and agenda for a nation, while also learning how each individual copes with this brief moment of fame.
Stephen Farnsworth
Dr. Frantzich has done a wonderful job of examining an important trend in presidential communication: the identification and praising of 'ordinary' American heroes in State of Union addresses. At a time when so many politicians disappoint, we can find comfort in these extraordinary citizens who faced crises with bravery, intelligence, and hope.
Steven E. Schier
Frantzich provides an incisive study of a new form of presidential rhetoric. His account contains some fascinating stories, and asks us to consider how to define heroes and how to honor them. It's a book deserving a wide readership among general and classroom audiences.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781442205628
Publisher:
Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
Publication date:
12/16/2010
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
136
File size:
0 MB

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