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The Sound of Ideas

Inaugural Moments

Posted Friday, January 16, 2009

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Inaugural Moments President-elect Barack Obama will take his oath on Abe Lincoln's Bible. Lincoln was the first to include African Americans in the inaugural parade. But his speech? One writer called it “a sea of twaddle.” When Franklin Roosevelt said “the only thing we have to fear is fear itself,’’ it didn’t make the front page of some newspapers. When our 44th president is sworn in next week, what will we remember about his speech decades from now? Join the conversation Friday morning at 9.

Photo Gallery

President John Kennedy being sworn in, 1961. Photo courtesy of John F. Kennedy Presidential Library Inaugural Parade, 1961. Photo courtesy of John F. Kennedy Presidential Library Richard M. Nixon takes the oath of office, 1969. Photo courtesy of the Nixon Library President Ronald Reagan being sworn in, 1981. Photo courtesy of the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and Museum




Mike Bailey, professor of government, Berry College in Georgia
Justin Vaughn, professor of political science, Cleveland State University

Additional Information

New York Times: Inaugurations in Times of Peril
Weekend America: Our First Inaugural Poet
American Rhetoric

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