political culture and political language essay ekilby11

Oct 21st, 2014
Anonymous
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Question description

Essay #1 – Political Culture and Political Language

4-5 pages, double spaced, Times New Roman 12pt font, 1-inch margins

Some central topics that we have covered so far this semester have been:

  • Introduction to Politics
    • We discussed the meaning of politics, the types of power relationships that exist in society and how the political process ultimately determines the rules of the game in the competition for the limited valued things in society.
      • Resources:
        • Lecture Notes
        • “What is Politics?” chapter by Wasserman
  • American Political Culture
    • We discussed how the values of the political culture are important for the policymaking process because they define the terms of the political debate and establish the range of acceptable policy options available to policymakers.
      • Resources:
        • Lecture Notes
        • “American Political Culture” chapter by Patterson
        • In-class exercise with the President’s Address at Newtown

  • Political Socialization
    • Political socialization is the process whereby individuals acquire political knowledge, attitudes and beliefs. The vast majority of our beliefs are learned from our experiences and the environment around us.
    • The places where we acquire our political beliefs are called “agents of socialization”, some of the most important are family, school, religion, peers and the media.
      • Resources:
        • Lecture Notes
        • See “Political Socialization/Political Opinion” chapter
  • Political Language: Liberal and Conservative
    • We have also discussed George Lakoff’s article on “framing” and his theory that:
      • If you see the nation in the metaphor of a family, there are two ways that you might understand how the family AND the nation should be run/governed:
        • The Strict Father Model
        • The Nurturing Parent Model
      • Resources:
        • Lecture Notes
        • See “Political Language” chapter by Lakoff

Additionally, in preparation for this essay I would like for you to view and read an example of political language in both President Obama’s 2013 State of the Union Address and one of the Republican party’s two responses to the State of the Union that year.  Please watch/hear/read the speeches below:

AND

  • “Establishment” Republican Party’s Response delivered by Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) Video Transcript

OR

  • “Tea Party” faction of the Republican Party’s Response delivered by Senator Rand Paul (D-KY) Video and Transcript

Having considered the information presented in the pieces above

In this essay I would like for you to:

  • In President Obama’s address, please find two distinct examples of the President alluding to a tenet/tenets of American Political Culture. 
    • What idea or policy is the President seeking to justify by evoking this tenet? 
    • How is the tenet specifically linked to the idea/policy being discussed? Be explicit – use the meaning of the tenet as described by Patterson.
    • Is the justification for the idea or policy being presented from within a nurturing parent or strict father frame?  How so? Be explicit – use the components of the model as described by Lakoff.
    • From your point of view, is the President successful in justifying his proposal through the tenet?  Why or why not?
    • Is he staying true to the core meaning of the tenet, or do you believe he is using the tenet in a more coercive way? Why or why not?
  • Similarly, please analyze the Republican response that you chose.  In analyzing Senator Rubio/Senator Paul’s speech, please find two distinct examples of the speaker alluding to a tenet/tenets of American Political Culture. 
    • What idea or policy is the speaker seeking to justify by evoking this tenet? 
    • How is the tenet specifically linked to the idea/policy being discussed? Be explicit – use the meaning of the tenet as described by Patterson.
    • Is the justification for the idea or policy being presented from within a nurturing parent or strict father frame?  How so? Be explicit – use the components of the model as described by Lakoff.
    • From your point of view, is the speaker successful in justifying their idea through the tenet?  Why or why not?
    • Does the speaker stay true to the core meaning of the tenet, or do you believe he is using the tenet in a more coercive way? Why or why not?
  • Taking into account your analysis of the success of the arguments being made in the speeches please reflect upon whether your own political thought is based more within a nurturing parent or strict father frame. 
    • Which frame resonates with you most?
    • How have you been socialized to believe that this frame is the most just? Which agents of socialization introduced you to these beliefs? Be precise, use the agents of socialization and the “cycles of life” described in the Public Opinion article.
    • What did these agents of socialization specifically teach you about these beliefs? 
    • What has been your reaction to these teachings? 
  •  Include a relevant introduction and conclusion.

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