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AmericanForeign Policy

The U.S. foreignpolicy refers to the standards and practices adopted by the countryin its interactions with other countries. The foreign policy isdetermined by domestic perceptions about the kind of country Americais (Merino 23). It is important to isolate the American identity soas to understand foreign policy. In many cases, the American identityhas been closely linked with exceptionalism. This phenomenondescribes the tradition of a country to consider itself as superb insome way. Therefore, such an exemplary nation would not need toconform to traditional principles and rules regarding conduct (Restad10). The foreign policy tradition has also manifested elements ofisolationism. This refers to the phenomenon where a country keepsseparate from the interests of other countries through avoidinginterference in foreign political affairs (Stephens 26). A thirdaspect of American foreign policy has been identified asexpansionism. Under this policy, a country extends its economicinfluence and territorial significance through military means(Anderson 39). American exceptionalism needs to be redefined andconceptualized in a manner that reflects modern developments inforeign policy.

Exceptionalismhas been used to describe the American identity since the 1830s. Atthe time, America existed as the only prosperous democracy in theWestern world and beyond. Compared to other countries such as France,the U.S. showed more commitment to individualism, human rights, andreligious tolerance (Hastedt 45). Since then, America’s economicand political institutions have been compared to other Westernnations. These comparisons have yielded an objective confirmation ofAmerican exceptionalism. In the late 1960s, scholars acclaimed thedistinct nature of American institutions through a study ofcomparative politics (Hastedt 60). Scientific research also focusedon approaches to religion, culture, economy, and government.

The Americanidentity is synonymous with the lack of class distinctions andconflicts. The middle class exercises dominance over the Americansystem. Besides, rival ideologies have ignored divisive debatesduring the creation of American policy. The general view ofexceptionalism was erroneously attributed to the U.S due to thecountry having better systems than European nations (Restad 71).Therefore, America has been lauded as not only unique but also betterthan other nations. American exceptionalism has also been captured bythe notion of superiority. In the 19th century, manifestdestiny argued that the U.S. was divinely mandated to spreadenlightenment and liberty to other Western territories (Hastedt 78).Consequently, belief in American exceptionalism has permeated allsectors of the citizenry.

Contemporaryacademic views also recognize the exceptional nature of the U.S. as amodel of self-government. The country is also depicted as a pillar offreedom, and a defender of liberty either through persuasion or force(Restad 99). Therefore, American exceptionalism has been expressedthrough comparative politics and also as the American identity.Nevertheless, exceptionalism cannot mean ‘different’ since allcountries have different qualities. Besides, scientific study doesnot suffice in determining the comparative levels of exceptionalismamong different countries. American exceptionalism should be viewedas a profoundly entrenched belief. Its persistence throughout historyhas contributed not only to American identity but also foreignpolicy.

Consequently,American policy has been reflected in the foreign policy adopted bythe country. The U.S. is expected to play a special role in worldlyaffairs due to its uniqueness in comparison to other Western nations.National identity can be defined as a pattern of traditions andvalues that contribute to cultural heritage. Foreign policy has beencaptured by isolationism and internationalism (Merino 30). The latterconcept refers to active engagement in worldly affairs. In the early20th century, an ‘exemplary’ national identity led toan isolationist foreign policy. On the other hand, a ‘missionary’national identity resulted in an internationalist foreign policy(Merino 33). Nonetheless, modern research recognizes Americanexceptionalism as the domineering American identity. This identityresults in a unilateral internationalist foreign policy.

The three idealsof exceptionalism, expansionism, and isolationism have generatedtension between fundamental American values (Stephens 27). Thistension has had many consequences in the manner through whichAmerican policy is formulated and executed. The missionary identityestablishes the right of America to spread its superior ideologies toother areas. This gives prominence to the rise of exceptionalism.Since the U.S. is presumed to have better economic and politicalinstitutions, the country is expected to provide leadership on manyfronts. Subsequently, the U.S. adopts aggressive foreign policiesaimed at educating and reforming other countries (Anderson 52).America also assumes the right and responsibility to insert itself inother nation’s affairs so as to ensure successful governance.

Exceptionalism isclosely associated with expansionist ideals. The country exercisesits manifest destiny by impressing its views and policies on othernations. The U.S. can afford to avoid conforming to any establishedinternational standards. On the other hand, an ‘exemplary’identity fosters the idea of isolationism. This identity wasexemplified by Puritan settlers who viewed the U.S. as the proverbialPromised Land (Stephens 48). Consequently, America was regarded asthe ideal place to pursue economic and social prosperity. Thefreedoms enshrined in American policy made the country complete andself-sufficient (Stephens 49). Isolationist foreign policies canstill be seen in various interactions between the U.S. and the restof the world.

Indeed,exceptionalism needs to be redefined as the modern depiction ofAmerican identity. This has resulted in a unilateral internationalistforeign policy. The tension between expansionism, exceptionalism, andisolationism has had massive consequences. For example, the U.S. hasintervened in many worldly conflicts so as to broker peace. Thecountry has employed special envoys to assess the needs of othercountries and recommend apt means of intervention. In some cases, thecountry has been accused of overstepping its mandate and underminingforeign sovereignties (Anderson 101). Isolationist policies have beendemonstrated where the country has chosen not to participate incertain conflicts or debates.

Works Cited

Anderson, Perry. American foreign policy and its thinkers.Brooklyn: Verso, 2015. Print.

Hastedt, Glenn. American foreign policy: Past, present, andfuture. Lanham: Rowman &amp Littlefield, 2015. Print.

Merino, Noël. US foreign policy. Farmington Hills, Mich.:Greenhaven Press, 2015. Print.

Restad, Hilde. American exceptionalism: An idea that made a nationand remade the world. London: Routledge, 2015. Print.

Stephens, Bret. America in retreat: The new isolationism and thecoming global disorder. New York: Sentinel, 2015. Print.

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Modifyingthe Point of View

OnBeing Told I Don’t Speak Like a Black Person by Allison Joseph

Life in the 1970swas tumultuous,

Especially growingup in Jamaica.

The influence of thewhite man

Permeated manyaspects of daily life.

I constantlyimagined my future

When blacks wouldfinally embrace

And cherish theirunique identity.

School was tough inthose days.

We were told tochange our ways

And persevere sincehard work pays.

The British systemsupplanted our

Own form ofeducation and training.

The punishments werefrequent and severe

Intended to readjustour listening ear

And to modify ourCaribbean accents.

I remember the redskin on my palm

From constantbeatings.

I also remember thebroken rulers

That were used todiscipline us.

All of it was provedwasted effort.

I still retained myaccent

Like a true MarcusGarvey.

But it was not allgloom.

At least I met myfuture husband

A British man with aCockney accent

Who later moved tothe United States.

It was early days inthe post-colonial era

And migration wasquite rampant.

Who was I to resist?

So we set sail earlyin the 1990s

And set up shop inNew York.

That is when ourprecious daughter

Came along torevitalize our life.

Allison was hername.

The people therewere charming

And respectful ofpersonal identity.

Nobody eversuggested

That I change myaccent

To fit localintonation.

What a contrast toJamaica!

Where blacks denied

Their own identity.

What a shame!

I thank the highheavens

For keeping megrounded.

Talkby Terrance Hayes

Basketball was aphenomenal game, especially

Back in theadventurous days of high school.

I remember theexcitement in the locker rooms

Before we went outon the court, with all

The cheerleadersready to grace our entrance.

My teammates dubbedme Larry Bird, more

Due to my skincolor, than my lanky legs.

I would like tothink that my excellent play

And my ability toknock down shots made me

Worthy of comparisonto the great legend.

I doubted any of myteammates would ever get

To my level offinesse, talent, and determination.

As an avid fan ofbasketball, the NBA was always

Never too far frommy mind and heart, even when

The games would bebroadcast during late nights.

Other sportingevents also provided a real spectacle.

I could never forgetthe Dream Team assembled in ’92,

When Barcelonahosted the greatest Olympics in

Recent decades, ifnot the best in living memory.

Who knew blackscould be so good at something?

Something as whiteas basketball, as European

As the Olympics, thepinnacle of athleticism.

Then spread the fameand reverence of Michael Jordan,

The darling of theblack community, the super athlete,

More honored thanthe other Michael of Formula 1.

Maybe skin colorcounted for little, or so my mind

Imagined duringextended periods of reflection.

Alone with mythoughts, isolated in my thinking.

Maybe an unjustworld had made us different, and

Maybe thesedifferences did not mean superiority.

But there was onlyone Larry Bird, and he was vastly

Superior to theother pretenders masquerading as

Good players, bettershooters, best guards.

How we would soaras a bird, the ultimate eagle!


I chose to modifythe two poems since they have a clear depiction of characters. Forexample, On Being Told I Don’t Speak Like a Black Person byAllison Joseph was narrated by Allison. The poem makes reference toother characters such as her parents and her friend Cathy. The poemalso made reference to teachers in Jamaican classrooms and highschool friends (Joseph). On the other hand, Like by TerranceHayes also featured the persona and his white friend (Hayes). I alsoselected both poems since they have similar thematic elements ofethnicity and diversity.

In On BeingTold I Don’t Speak Like a Black Person, the new narrator isAllison’s mother. Allison had mentioned how the teachers in Jamaicatried to change her mother’s accent (Joseph). The modificationprovided more information on this subject since the mother had thefirst-hand experience. Allison also refers to the US as her homewhile the mother hails from Jamaica. The poem also alludes to theBritish nationality of Allison`s father (Joseph). The modificationattempts to explain these details through creativity. In this regard,the modification states that Allison’s parents met in Jamaica andmoved to New York, where they started a family. Nevertheless, themother was not privy to the reaction of Allison’s friends to heraccent (Joseph). Therefore, these details are nonexistent in themother’s point of view.

In Like,the new narrator is M, the white friend (Hayes). The modificationfocused on the white boy’s view of basketball and blacks. Thepersona in the original poem took offense to the M’s insensitivityand sense of superiority. M had a low opinion of the black friend’sbasketball skills (Hayes). He was also dismissive of blacks. Thissame attitude is reflected in the modified poem. The new narrator isamazed at the skills of blacks in the 1992 Dream Team. M considershimself as good as Larry Bird and, therefore, looks down upon theblacks. The modified poem also expands on the theme of basketballfeatured in the original poem.

Modifying thepoint of view of the two poems presented various challenges. Everyliterary piece usually has a narrator. The persona is omniscientsince he is aware of all the facts surrounding the chosen theme.Therefore, the new narrator can have only a fragmented understandingof the critical issues. In this regard, it was challenging to givethe new narrator comprehensive knowledge of events. It was alsodifficult to ensure the new narrator expressed the events in alogical manner. Another challenge was in the identification ofcentral characters in the poem. Besides, proper modification of thetext precludes one from altering the central action. This presentedthe challenge of identifying the key thematic elements in the poem.

I overcame thechallenges by rearranging the sequence of events described in thepoems. In other instances, I modified the text by recreating events.I was able to identify the central characters in the poem by notingthe use of pronouns in the poems. I read the poems severally so as toisolate the central themes. Modifying the points of view in bothpoems required immense creativity. For example, in my modification ofTalk, I added plenty of new details in trying to capture M’slove for basketball. In On Being Told I Don’t Speak Like a BlackPerson, I added details pertaining to how Allison’s mother mether husband and their decision to relocated to the US. I was able torecreate both poems by analyzing the sequence of events. I used mysense of imagination so as to compensate for the limited perspectivesof the new narrators in both poems.

The assignment has taught me plenty of lessons about the power ofpoint of view and voice. The same narrative could be told indifferent ways through adopting various perspectives. Therefore, itis expected that some details will appear contradictory when thepoint of view is modified. This occurs because each person tends tofocus on a particular aspect of the narrative (Ehrlich 45). A personain a poem has a specific aim of telling his story. On the other hand,another character in the poem could have a different purpose. Motivesare unique to an individual. The assignment has also taught me tonurture the analytical skill of creative thinking. In analyzing aliterary piece, it is always important to evaluate the writer’spoint of view (Ehrlich 70). From that point forward, it becomeseasier to develop an objective understanding of the subject matter.

Works Cited

Ehrlich, Susan. Point of View: A Linguistic Analysis of LiteraryStyle. Hoboken: Taylor and Francis, 2014. Print.

Hayes, Terrance. Like, 2015. Print.

Joseph, Allison. On Being Told I Don’t Speak Like a BlackPerson, 2002. Print.

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Crescentby Diana Abu-Jaber tells the love story of Sirine and Hanif Al Eyadinterlaced with the fantastical narrative about AbdelrahmanSalahadin. The book is in the form of narration by Sirine’s uncle.The uncle narrates about the life events of Salahadin, whom he refersto as his long-lost cousin. In the novel, Sirine’s experiences arejuxtaposed with the adventures of Salahadin. Sirine and Han portraythe lives of Arabs living within American communities (Boosahda 23).Sirine is an established chef at a local diner while Han is aprofessor at a nearby university. She has worked for many years inCalifornian, Italian, and French restaurants. Her current posting ata Lebanese restaurant rekindles her passion for cooking. In thisregard, she begins using old recipes from her deceased parents(Abinader 12). The novel uses the connection between Han and Sirineto extol the virtues of cultural reinvention and self-discovery.Nevertheless, the mythical story concerning Salahadin has a deepermeaning and application that covers Andalusian and Arabicperspectives.

Significanceof Salahadin

The novel makesconstant reference to the search and rescue efforts made for the sakeof Salahadin. The fictional man is referred to as the drowned Arab.This is due to his conniving tactics aimed at deceiving his captors.Salahadin sells himself severally but later escapes by pretending todrown. The significance of the fantastical story about Salahadin iscaptured by a historical examination of the name. ‘AbdelrahmanSalahadin’ has subtle links to both Andalusian and Muslimconnections. For example, ‘Abdelrahman’ was a renowned Andalusianprince who escaped from Baghdad in the eighth century. He was forcedto flee the city so as to avoid the massacre of his entire royalfamily. He finally settled in Al-Alandus after five years on the run(Gana 45). After some months, he founded Cordoba and exalted himselfas the prince of the massive Iberian Peninsula.

Abdelrahman usedhis reign as governor and prince of Cordoba to enact radical changesthat shaped the history of Andalusia. Foremost among these wasbuilding the Great Mosque. The iconic structure was at the time oneof the most prominent buildings in Cordoba. The reign of Abdelrahmanwas characterized by peace and religious tolerance. Arts and sciencealso flourished under his regime. Therefore, the name ‘Abdelrahman’makes reference to the period of rapid advancement and development ofAndalusia. Besides, other parallels can be drawn from the lifeexperiences of both persons. The prince successfully averted thepotent threat of execution during the massacre in Baghdad (Gana 86).After that, he moved from city to city in search of refuge.

In the novel,Salahadin also escapes from captors on numerous occasions. Inparticular, he feigns death by drowning as he attempts to flee. Thisis meant to fool his captors and dissuade them from making anyattempts to recapture him. The constant search for the prince afterhis escape from Baghdad mirrors the futile search attempts forSalahadin (Fadda-Conrey 39). The novel also narrates how Han escapedfrom Iraq so as to save his life. Han had to leave his entire familybehind as he made his departure. The prince was able to reclaim hislost glory by becoming not only the emir of Cordoba but also rulerover the entire Iberian Peninsula. Similarly, Han was also able toachieve success after his escape to Los Angeles. He became areputable professor in California. The novel uses the depiction ofPrince Abdelrahman to alert the reader to the similarities betweenthe drowning Arab (Salahadin) and the Iraqi exile (Han).

The use of‘Salahadin’ invokes the memory of a fearsome Kurdish leader wholived in the 12th century. The Arabic leader was creditedwith rescuing Jerusalem from under the hold of crusader rule.Salahadin was a mighty warrior that had many conquests in wars. Helaid siege to Jerusalem for many days but finally managed to capturethe city. The city has been bogged down by Crusader rule for amammoth 88 years. Granted, the conqueror’s triumphal entry intoJerusalem was a surprise to many observers. Salahadin had beenmotivated by bitterness and revenge (Gana 101). Nevertheless, hepursued peace and spared the lives of the vanquished Christians. Hismerciful actions contrasted that of the first crusaders who hadbrutally massacred the Muslims years back.

It is quitenoteworthy that the experiences of Salahadin the warrior reflectthose of Han. Salahadin had returned to Jerusalem in pursuit ofrevenge. The Muslims had suffered tragedy courtesy of the firstcrusaders. Therefore, Salahadin was rightly motivated by anger inseeking to avenge the massacre of Muslims (Gana 100). On the otherhand, Han had left his homeland of Iraq so as to save himself fromcertain death. Bitter memories plagued him concerning the crueltreatment he faced. Nevertheless, he longed to return to hislong-lost family. Just like the warrior had done, Han chose to let goof resentment. Allowing hatred to fester would have been calamitous.It is also significant that Han was partly motivated by anger in hisdecision to return to Iraq. He felt betrayed by Sirine since she fellin love with someone else (Fadda-Conrey 51). His decision to go backto Iraq out of anger mirrored the warrior`s siege of Jerusalem. Inthis manner, the novel uses the historical story of Salahadin tohighlight the similarities between the drowned Arab and Han.

The mythicalstory of Salahadin displays the risks and difficulties of being anArab. The novel laments the suspicious treatment of Arabs byAmericans. The context of the novel revolves around the 9/11 bombingin the US. From that point onwards, Arabs have been abhorrent toAmericans. In this regard, the novel implies that being an Arab isbearable only when one strips off the consciousness associated withbeing Arabic. The constant reference to Salahadin as the drowningArab has implications for the whole community (Gana 125). The novelalso attempts to layer the two cultures side by side. For example,Sirine hailed from an Iraqi father and an American mother. Althoughher parents died while she was barely nine years old, their memoriesimbibe her with strength and perspective (Abinader 61). Han is anIraqi exile staying in Los Angeles. Sirine tells Han about Americanlife while Han gives her insights into her Arabic heritage. Nathan isalso featured in the novel as an American photographer with previousresidence in Baghdad. It is worth noting that he has deep connectionsto both Han and Sirine.

Salahadinand Han

Perhaps the mostobvious connection between Han and the drowning man was made towardsthe end of the novel. The uncle’s story of Salahadin appears likean unnecessary divergence into fantasy. This is because of thereferences made to a Mother of All Fishes, a mermaid, and BlueBedouins. The blooming romance between Sirine and Han appearsauthentic since it is filled with discernible facts and details. Atthe end of the novel, Han returns to Baghdad after staying away forthe best part of two decades. Upon his return, Han adopts the name‘Abdelrahman Salahadin.’ In this manner, the connection is madebetween fantasy and reality. The novel helps the reader to make senseof the mythical figure in the fantastical story. While Salahadin wasreferred to as the drowned Arab, Han was designated as the found Arab(Ludescher 73). The regular references to Salahadin were intended tosymbolize the life experiences of Han.

In various ways,Salahadin bears similarities to Han. Both characters surviveddifficult situations to attain freedom. This means that they escapedfrom seemingly hopeless situations (Fadda-Conrey 36). For example,Salahadin evaded many captors while at sea. In fact, he pretended todrown so as to deter further pursuits from his captors. Similarly,Han was rightly considered an Iraqi exile. He escaped the country atthe time of Sadam Hussein’s ascension to power.

Both charactersmanaged to overcome adversity so as to achieve unprecedented success(Fadda-Conrey 59). Salahadin transformed his life in the US by takingup an acting role. He achieved phenomenal success and fame as aHollywood actor. In fact, Salahadin came to be known as Omar Sharif.Changing his name and identity showed an utter reversal of hisfortunes. The past experiences as an enslaved prisoner were over. Ina sense, Abdelrahman Salahadin had drowned at sea and reemerged asOmar Sharif. On the other hand, Han also found success after escapingfrom Iraq. The new regime in Iraq had brought sweeping changes. Theinstability and turmoil led many citizens to fear for their safetyand security (Boosahda 40). Han could not bear to live under suchconditions. His decision to escape seemed to be vindicated by thesuccess he later attained in the field of education. Han experiencedrapid development to become a respectable translator of literature.He also became a prestigious and dignified professor at UCLA.


Crescentby Diana Abu-Jaber intertwines the dual experiences of Han andAbdelrahman Salahadin. The name given to the mythical man betrays thedeep connection between Han and Salahadin. Also, the novel highlightsthe unfortunate plight of Arabs by invoking historical characters(Gana 66). ‘Abdelrahman’ was a Prince who escaped death andsettled elsewhere to enjoy great prosperity. Han also escaped fromhis homeland to preserve his life. Nevertheless, he became asuccessful lecturer in the US. ‘Salahadin’ was a mighty warriorwho captured Jerusalem while motivated by revenge. Han was alsomotivated by anger in returning to Iraq. Therefore, the story of thedrowning Arab reflects the life of Han.

Works Cited

Abinader, Elmaz. “Profile of an Arab Daughter.” Al Jadid7.37 (2001): 4-5. Print.

Boosahda, Elizabeth. Arab-American Faces and Voices: The Originsof an Immigrant Community. Austin, Texas: U of Texas P, 2003.Print

Fadda-Conrey, Carol. “Arab American Literature in the EthnicBorderland: Cultural Intersections in Diana Abu-Jaber`s Crescent.”MELUS 31.4 (2006): 187-206. Print.

Gana, Nouri. “In Search of Andalusia: Reconfiguring Arabness inDiana Abu-Jaber’s Crescent.” Comparative Literature Studies45.2 (2008): 228-46. Print.

Ludescher, Tannys. “From Nostalgia to Critique: An Overview of ArabAmerican Literature” MELUS 31.4 (2006): 93-114. Print.

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The “From Obamato Trump” op-ed by Ross Douthat tells the story of the transitionin American politics. The article endeavors to explain the fears ofthe Republican Party and its hopefuls. Presidential candidate DonaldTrump has been the subject of ridicule from all sections of the mediaand the political divide. Perhaps the worst tragedy is the fact thatloyal members of his party are also skeptical of his qualifications.His enemies and political opponents have labeled him as an outrightjoke. Liberals are also amazed at the ensuing spectacle. The fearsheld by the Republican Party are enhanced every time Trump wins aprimary or even extends his lead in the opinion polls. Many areappalled by Trump’s apparent use of celebrity status to run aPresidential campaign (West). However, the author attempts toconvince the reader that President Barrack Obama’s campaign in 2008set the precedent for the debacle of Trump’s Presidential campaign.The op-ed successfully appeals to the reader’s logic and emotionthrough the use of various rhetorical devices.

The writer useshyperbole as an exaggeration technique designed to appeal to emotion.For example, the op-ed terms the spectacle orchestrated by Trump andthe Republican Party as “self-immolation” (Douthat). The termalludes to the Tibetan action of setting oneself on fire in protestor so as to prove a particular ideal. The irony of the statement isthat the Republican Party has not even selected Trump as itsflag-bearer. Besides, it cannot be said that the Party has made aconscious decision to endorse Trump for the Presidency. Therefore,using the term is a clear exaggeration of the facts. It is alsodifficult to imagine anything worse than self-immolation. Yet, theop-ed mentions that “what arises from the destruction will beworse” (Douthat). The op-ed also labels Trump’s campaign as an“uprising.” This brings to the mind the revolts that occurred incountries seeking independence from under the control of exactingcolonialists. In this instance, the op-ed attempts to convince thereader that the Republican Party is indeed in a precarious position.

The op-ed usesperspective to appeal to the reader’s logic and ensure objectivity.In this regard, the op-ed references various aspects of theRepublican Party that have contributed to the current situation. Forexample, the op-ed alludes to President George W. Bush’s disastrousreign to soften the impact of Trump’s recklessness (Douthat). TheParty is also blamed for “stoking and ignoring” (Douthat) thelegitimate grievances expressed by the working-class for decades. TheParty leadership also comes in for criticism for failing to provideproper guidance to the members. His rivals are also criticized forunderestimating Trump’s capabilities. The op-ed uses these examplesto convince the reader that Trump’s apparent brashness owes in partto failings within the Republican Party. Such appeal to logic drawsout the reader to consider the matter objectively.

The op-ed usesdiction to highlight particular phenomenon. For example, the authorrefers to the effect of Trump`s Presidential campaign as &quotTrumpism&quot(Douthat). The use of this term is intended to show the massiveimpact that Trump`s campaign has had on the nation. The media frenzygenerated by his utterances and actions has never been witnessedbefore. Many of Trump’s statements have sparked plenty of debateand widespread discussions. His campaign rallies have garnered plentyof support and disapproval in equal measure. The American public hasnever had such a carefree Presidential candidate devoid of fear.Trump has seemed to be on a roller-coaster of sorts with hispublicity stunts and quips (Collins). The majority of the publicappeared to consider him as an entertainer due to his disregard forthe repercussions of his actions (West). Therefore, the op-ed appealsto the reader’s emotion by labeling Trump’s campaign effect asTrumpism.

The op-ed alsouses analogy in linking the liberal tendencies of previous regimes tothe showmanship visible in Trump’s campaign for Presidency. Forexample, the op-ed mentions the beginning of President Obama`scampaign as a case in point. Granted, the op-ed acknowledges therandom nature of Obama`s cultural status. However, the facts of thematter show that a former reality TV star now leads the march to thegreatest seat in world politics. In this regard, the op-ed outlinesvarious examples to explain the culmination of an entertainer“leading a populist, nationalist revolt” (Douthat). In attemptingto cite reasons and give accompanying evidence, the op-ed appeals tothe reader’s logic.

Firstly, theop-ed references previous deployment of celebrities in Presidentialcampaigns. The public endorsement of President Obama by renowned talkshow host Oprah Winfrey is mentioned as a case in point. In fact, theop-ed features a well-chosen image of President Obama speaking at acampaign rally in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, in December 2007. Perhaps themost fascinating aspect of the picture is the depiction of media guruOprah listening intently next to Obama. The op-ed uses this image toserve as corroborating evidence in its appeal to the reader`s logic.President Obama`s first campaign also used a & musicvideo` (Douthat) to whip up the crowds. Several other Hollywood starsare on record as having endorsed President Obama for the top job. Theuse of pillared sets and “quasi-religious imagery” (Douthat) alsoadded the celebrity element to Obama`s first campaign. A furtherappeal to logic occurs through the reference to Obama`s campaign as a&quotprestige movie`s Oscar campaign&quot (Douthat).

Furthermore, theop-ed references the imperial presidency of Obama as a case to provethat Trump is indeed justified in his use of celebrity status togarner for support and votes. The choices made by President Obamaduring his stay in office give precedence to imperialism. The authoralso uses contradiction to appeal to the reader’s logic. Forexample, the op-ed mentions how Obama once campaigned against thepower grabs evident in President George Bush’s government.Nevertheless, Obama has magnified executive authority. Obama is alsoon record as having criticized the terrible decisions made by hispredecessor with regards to leading the country into unnecessarywars. However, he too has launched wars without seeking majoritysupport from the Congress (Douthat). Obama also decried theimplications of the Patriot Act (Shear). Nevertheless, the op-edmentions that he has claimed “the power to assassinate Americancitizens” (Douthat).

The op-ed usessymbolism in its appeal to logic. For example, Presidential politicsis compared to a “season of Survivor” (Douthat). This comparisonalludes to the popular TV show where participants endeavor to outlasteach other by sheer grit and determination. Succession politics isalso compared to “The Apprentice.” This comparison appeals tologic in various ways. First, it reminds the reader of Trump’ssuccessful reality TV show. In that show, Trump was responsible forfiring and hiring contestants based on their decisions. The referencealso helps the reader to picture the hard work, resourcefulness, anddrive that typifies the Presidential campaign.


As discussed, theop-ed employs various rhetoric techniques so as to appeal to theemotions and logic of readers. The op-ed strives to convince thereader that President Barrack Obama’s campaign in 2008 set theprecedent for the imperialism of Trump’s Presidential campaign. Forexample, hyperbole is used to appeal to emotion by overstating thefacts. The op-ed also uses diction to heighten the sensitivity of thereader to a particular phenomenon. Symbolism is used to make boldcomparisons and hence appeal to logic. Besides, analogy and allusionare used to great effect to show the culpability of the RepublicanParty and the responsibility of President Obama. Therefore, theauthor succeeds in convincing the reader of the legitimacy of Trump’scampaign for office.

Works Cited

Collins, Gail. “Trump Clarifies, and It’s Worse.” TheOpinion Pages. New York Times, 11 March 2016. Web. 12 March 2016.

Douthat, Ross. “From Obama to Trump.” Sunday Review. NewYork Times, 27 February 2016. Web. 12 March 2016.

Douthat, Ross. “Clash of the Populists.” Sunday Review.New York Times, 20 February 2016. Web. 12 March 2016.

Shear, Michael. “Obama, at South by Southwest, Calls for LawEnforcement Access in Encryption Fight.” Politics. New YorkTimes, 11 March 2016. Web. 12 March 2016.

West, Lindy. “What Are Trump Fans Really ‘Afraid’ to Say?”The Opinion Pages. New York Times, 11 March 2016. Web. 12March 2016.