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The Presidential Campaign 1976

A Selection of Campaign Speeches

Eckhard Breitinger

The American Presidency has suffered a decline in public esteem since the middle of the Sixties, since Vietnam and the anti-authoritarean movement. The speeches of the 1976 Campaign reflect the duality of newness and tradition that has always been inherent to American society. The speeches selected here reveal the structural pattern of the Presidential campaign with its attendant differences in rhetorical and political strategy. They also reveal the range of political philosophies from radical liberalism to reactionary separatism. The speeches should not primarily be looked at from the point of view of materialization of political programs, the major and more lasting interest should rest with textual analysis, with the view to verbalisation and rhetoric packaging of political messages.