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Bradford Vivian
Vanderbilt University (Nashville, TN 37240-0001)
In Praise of Freedom: The Rhetoric of U.S. Liberty, 1900-1945

"In Praise of Freedom" analyzes the influence of twentieth-century U.S. public address on American conceptions of freedom and citizenship. Such address comprises a rich but sparsely utilized archive of uniquely American definitions of liberty. Historians have described changing definitions of American freedom across different historical periods. In contrast, my project uses the analytic tools of rhetorical theory and criticism to investigate how speakers and writers from the Progressive Era through World War II defined the central American vocabulary of freedom by persuading audiences to adopt particular civic norms, values, and actions in response to major sociopolitical events. The book forms the first half of a projected two-volume study.

Project fields:
Composition and Rhetoric

Summer Stipends

Research Programs

$5,000 (approved)
$5,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
5/1/2005 – 9/30/2005