World War, 1939-1945 -- United States -- Art and the war.
World War, 1939-1945 -- United States -- Women.
This essay examines the World War II poster "We Can Do It!," commonly known as "Rosie the Riveter." Today, J. Howard Miller's print is a feminist icon. However, archival evidence demonstrates that during World War II the empowering rhetorical appeal of this Westinghouse image was circumscribed by the conditions of its use and by several other posters in its series. The essay concludes that, when considered in its original context, the "We Can Do It!" poster was not nearly as empowering of home-front women as it might seem to more recent viewers. The poster has become a modern-day myth.
The group calling themselves The Swift Boat Veterans for Truth first organized in April 2004 in order to plot a strategy to undermine John Kerry's bid for president. They developed several advertisements that questioned everything from the legitimacy of Kerry's medals to the accuracy of his version of the past; they portrayed Kerry as an overly ambitious person willing to distort the truth to achieve his political goals, and they generated a firestorm of political debate. This essay argues that the Swift Boat veterans used realist discourse in collusion with Vietnam remembrance to create rhetorically powerful indictments of Kerry. To develop the argument, I focus on the Swift Boat veterans' first broadcast advertisement, an ad that had a significant influence on the presidential campaign both ideologically and in the polls. I argue that a discourse of realism dominated the ad, concealing not only its questionable credibility and political motives, but also the rhetorical tactics it used to reinforce its realist frame.
Haiti -- History -- American intervention, 1994-1995.
Rhetorical analyses of foreign policy tend to focus on the president as chief executive and commander in chief. Yet the U.S. Constitution structures a struggle for power between the president and Congress. In this study of a 1994 federal debate, three discourse trajectories are assembled to show how President Clinton's actions in Haiti unsettled traditions of advocacy, opened questions of obligation within collective memory, and launched presidential supporters and opponents to create and debate public memories of war and race. Thus we offer a shared powers inquiry, as a complement to the rhetorical presidency, in the interpretation and critique of foreign policy discourse.
Although party conventions were originally conceived of as deliberative institutions, subsequent reforms that bound national convention delegates to the results of state primaries and caucuses have resulted in national conventions that most scholars have tended to understand in the terms of ceremony and ritual. In order to better understand the "lost" deliberative dimension to party conventions, this study looks backward in time to the origin of the party convention in the second party system. Analysis of the convention addresses and floor debates recorded within the Democratic and Whig convention proceedings between 1836 and 1852 reveal an institution whose purported representative and deliberative functions were already being attenuated by the demands of interparty competition.
This essay presents a longitudinal analysis of Clinton's framing of welfare and poverty from 1992 to 1996. Focusing on how Clinton strategically framed the potential impacts of "ending welfare," the analysis points toward three primary interpretations of Clinton's actions: institutional weakness, political opportunism, and his belief that the bill would transform the nation's "anti-welfare culture" from one hostile to welfare recipients into one amenable to helping the working poor. The essay focuses on this third interpretation, concluding that although there is significant support that such a transformation has occurred in some ways, overall it remains much more potential than reality.