President Obama's Nobel Peace Prize Essay

Excerpt from Essay :

Indeed, arguably he is playing a little loose with the terms here, for persuasion, while it may be based on logic, is rarely simply logic. Rather it is logic combined with at least a coating of emotion.

In the following passage toward the end of his speech Obama uses language that I believe to be persuasive in a way in which Aristotle would approve, for Obama is using facts to build a case for his point-of-view rather than simply trading in emotion that he has called up for the occasion: This is not sophistry.

And that's why this award must be shared with everyone who strives for justice and dignity -- for the young woman who marches silently in
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the streets on behalf of her right to be heard even in the face of beatings and bullets; for the leader imprisoned in her own home because she refuses to abandon her commitment to democracy; for the soldier who sacrificed through tour after tour of duty on behalf of someone half a world away; and for all those men and women across the world who sacrifice their safety and their freedom and sometime their lives for the cause of peace.

But while not sophistry it is impassioned, and it arouses in us passion -- but passion grounded in the realities of the moment. Aristotle would have joined…

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