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From Hope to Audacity: The Evolution of President Barack Obama's Rhetoric and the 2012 Election

Wednesday, Oct. 24, 2012, 7:30 p.m. to 9 p.m.

  • Where: Woodruff Auditorium, Kansas Union
  • Cost: Free
  • Age limit: All ages


Barack Obama built a reputation as the most eloquent public leader since Ronald Reagan, beginning with his Keynote Address at the 2004 Democratic National Convention and culminating with a series of moving addresses in the 2008 presidential campaign, in which he promised to bring Hope and real Change. But as President, Obama has faced both a devastating economic crisis and intractable opposition, leaving some to conclude that he had lost his rhetorical magic. KU Professor of Communications Robin Rowland argues that Obama's rhetoric has just evolved: the arc has moved from impassioned appeals that created a new sense of Hope, to an audacious call to reaffirm basic fairness in American economic life and therefore save the American Dream.

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