The Study of Speech Act on Barack Obama’s and Hillary Clinton’s Campaign Speeches; Nurul Idawati, 110110101080; 2016; 106 pages; English Department, Faculty of Humanities, Jember University.
The phenomenon of speech acts is seen in the campaign speeches conducted by Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. It is found that they used different strategies in conveying their campaigns that influence the result of the election in 2008. Barack obama became the winner of the election, while Hillary Clinton became the lost side at that time. Moreover, either Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton have communicative purposes expressed through their campaign speeches. Hence, the present study would like to find out the strategies used by Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton in their campaign speeches through understanding the types and the most dominants speech acts used by them. Besides, it also want to reveal the intended meaning of some speech acts used by them. To analyze the data, this research applied quantitative and qualitative method. The data are in the form of written text that is speech transcripts by Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. There are 199 utterances produced by Barack Obama in his campaign speech and there are 304 utterances produced by Hillary Clinton in her campaign speech but the writer only takes 30 utterances that contain of speech acts either in Barack Obama’s or Hillary Clinton’s campaign speeches that will be analyzed.
The first step in processing the data was sorting 30 speech acts utterances, classifying the utterances into types of speech acts by using the theory proposed by Searle (1983), making table for counting the most dominant speech acts and the last, analyzing the intended meaning of speech acts used by Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton with speech act theory proposed by Austin (1962) and and the theory of context of situation by Brown and Yule (1983).
The findings show that there are four types of speech acts produced either by Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton. Those are commisives, representatives, directives, and expressives. In Barack Obama’s campaign speech, the highest of speech acts produced by him is commisive with the percentage 53%. Representative and directive respectively follow commisive with the percentage 27% and 13%. The lowest percentage of speech acts is expressive with the percentage 7%. While in Hillary Clinton’s campaign speech, the highest of speech acts produced by her is representative with the percentage 41%. Then, the second speech acts produced by her is commisive with the percentage 33%. The next rank is directives and expressives. Both of them have the same percentage that are 13%
The result above shows that in Barack Obama’s speech commisive appears as the dominant speech acts. While, in Hillary Clinton’s speech representative appears as the dominant speech acts.
This study found that the main intended meaning from Barack Obama’s utterances are commiting himself to future acts and also convincing the audience about his seriousness to be the President of United States of America through conveying his great programs that will be run in his period of governance. While, the main intended meaning from Hillary Clinton’s utterances are expressing the truth or facts to the audience referring to the case of crisis economy in the United States at that time.