John F. Kennedy’s Inaugural Speech Grammatical Analysis
“Since this country was founded, each generation of Americans has been summoned to give testimony to its natural loyalty.” This sentence is an example of subject-verb-object. Kennedy starts by beginning the sentence with an introductory phrase to introduce a reminder of the past; he gets straight to the point. He uses a comma after the introductory to further explain his most important thoughts about the country. “Now the trumpet summons us – not as a call to bear arms, though arms we need – not as a call to battle, though embattled we are – but a call to bear the burden of a long twilight struggle…” This sentence uses subject-verb-object. The sentence is also a compound sentence because the two sentences before and after the em dashes can stand alone. The subject of the first sentence is trumpets and the predicate is a summons. The subject of the second sentence is called and the predicate is to bear, which is an infinitive. The dashes give further detail or information on the first independent sentence.
“Can we forge against these enemies a grand and global alliance, North and South, East and West, that can assume a more fruitful life for all mankind?” This sentence tells or lets the audience know that Kennedy wants to unify the countries. He uses a rhetoric question to ask the audience for understanding his purpose. Kennedy tells who he wants to have alliances with before he finishes his questions. The sentence is a subject-verb-object because even though it is a question, the subject comes after the verb, which has an object to modify it. Kennedy uses a question to persuade his readers of the purpose of his speech.
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“I do not shrink from this responsibility – I welcome it.” This sentence would be a subject-verb-object. This could also be a compound sentence because it has two complete phrases before and after the em dash. Kennedy shows his audience that from the beginning of unifying his country, he will not back down from it. The dash helps the reader understand that he steps up to the challenge.
“…ask not what your country can do for you – ask what you can do for your country.” Kennedy wants to form a union between the citizens of the U.S and other countries. He just wants the people of the U.S to do right for our country. The sentence he uses tells the reader exactly what he wants to happen and he wants the citizens to help.
“I do not believe that any of us would exchange places with any other people or any other generations.” This sentence is an example of a subject-verb. This is just a simple sentence; it doesn’t have two or more independent phrases so it is not a compound sentence. Kennedy is saying that no one would want to be in anyone else’s shoes or whatever position they are in.