Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Barack Obama's Inaugural Address

Writers praise Barack Obama's inaugural address.

President Obama's address was full of soaring optimism but also seemed to criticize aspects of the administrations of both George W. Bush and Bill Clinton. Most say that restraint and plain speaking distinguished the speech. One calls it a 'sophisticated view of the world and our role in it.'

More novel than short story; more ballad than poem -- most writers agree that restraint and plain speaking were the qualities that distinguished President Obama's inaugural address. Long on plot (and it will thicken), it did what literature does best: the backward glance, the standing on shoulders, the salute to ancestors and other sources of wisdom.

"He is our first (in the best sense of the word) aristocratic president," said author and journalist Malcolm Gladwell. "Bush was a buddy. Clinton was the kindly uncle. Obama is a prince." Read more

Read Transcript of Barack Obama’s Inaugural Address