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Date of Award


Document Type

Thesis - Pacific Access Restricted

Degree Name

Master of Arts (M.A.)



First Advisor

Jon Schamber

First Committee Member

Qingwen Dong

Second Committee Member

Marlin Bates


This thesis analyzes the eulogistic and ideological rhetoric generated by the commemoration ceremonies recognizing the first anniversary of the events of September 11, 2001. By evaluating these ceremonies generically through a set of established epideictic criteria, a comparison and contrast of form and style in relation to their varying situations and rhetorical constraints was achieved. The intentional introduction of deliberative aspects to epideictic rhetoric was also a focus of this study in an attempt to discern the ideological frameworks employed by the various rhetors responsible for the content of the day's events. By analyzing the tokens and ideographs embedded in the rhetoric of the commemorative speakers, the ideological purposes of the planners and rhetors of the ceremonies were revealed. As a nationally televised, ceremonial event, the 9/11 commemoration failed. The mixed messages contained in the eulogies and the lack of a planned rhetorical strategy resulted in an emotionally engaging but fragmented exercise in public discourse.



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