First and Second Inaugural Addresses of Modern and Traditional U.S. Presidents: An Analysis of Self-Presentational Strategies
Keywords:Self-presentation, U.S. presidents, ingratiation, inaugural addresses.
AbstractThe present study examines the self-presentational strategies modern and traditional U.S. presidents employed in their first and second inaugural addresses. Specifically, we examined the presidents’ use of the strategies of ingratiation, self-promotion, exemplification, ingratiation, and supplication. We predicted that modern presidents would use more ingratiation than would their traditional counterparts in the first but not the second inaugural address. This prediction derives from an analysis of the president’s dependency on the public at the time of the inaugural address. In particular, the president is not as dependent on the public at the time of the second inaugural as compared with the first inaugural. We also predicted that modern presidents would use more self-promotion than would traditional presidents in the second but not the first inaugural address. And, finally we predicted that modern presidents would use more exemplification and intimidation than would traditional presidents. Our results supported several predictions.
Barbour, C., & Wright, G. (2012). Keeping the republic: Power and citizenship in American politics. Washington, D.C.: Congressional Quarterly Press.
Baumeister, R. F., & Jones, E. E. (1978). When self-presentation is constrained by the target’s knowledge: Consistency and compensation. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 36, 608-618. doi:10.1037/0022-35188.8.131.528
Campbell, K. K., & Jamieson, K. H. (1990). Presidents creating the presidency: Deeds done in words. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Donley, R.E., & Winter, D.G. (1970). Measuring the motives of public officials at a distance: An exploratory study of American presidents. Behavioral Science, 15, 227-235. doi:10.1002/bs.3830150304
Fallows, J. (2004). The state of the union moment. In T. Halstead (Ed.), The real state of the union (pp. 3 – 6). New York: Basic Books.
Gardner, W.L., & Avolio, B.J. (1998). The charismatic relationship: A dramaturgical perspective. Academy of Management Review, 22, 32-58.
Godfrey, D.K., Jones, E.E., & Lord, C.G. (1986) Self-promotion is not ingratiation. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 50, 106-115. doi:10.1037/0022-35184.108.40.206
Greenstein, F.I. (1978). Change and continuity in the modern presidency. In A. King (Ed.), The new American political system (pp. 45-85). Washington, D.C.: American Enterprise Institute.
Greenstein, F.I. (1988). Leadership in the modern presidency. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
Greenstein, F.I., Berman, L., & Felzenberg, A. (1977). Evolution of the American presidency: A bibliographical survey. Washington D.C.: American Enterprise Institute.
Hesse, M. (2013, January 15). For many presidential inaugurations, the second time is not the charm. The Washington Post. http://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/style/for-many-presidential-inaugurations-the-second-time-is-not-the-charm/2013/01/15/e7a8f456-5923-11e2-beee-6e38f5215402_story.html
Jones, E.E. (1964). Ingratiation: A social-psychological analysis. New York: Appleton-Century-Crofts.
Jones, E.E., & Pittman, T.S. (1982). Toward a general theory of strategic self-presentation. In J. Suls (Ed.), Psychological perspectives on the self, Vol. 1 (pp. 231-262). Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Earlbaum.
Jones, E.E., & Wortman, C. (1973). Ingratiation: An attributional approach. Morristown, N.J.: General Learning Press.
Leary, M. R. (1989). Self-presentational processes in leadership emergence and effectiveness. In R. A. Giacalone & P. Rosenfeld (Eds.), Impression management in the organization (pp. 363-374). Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Earlbaum.
Nichols, D.K. (1994). The myth of the modern presidency, University Park, PA: The Pennsylvania State University Press.
Pfiffner, J. P. (1994). The modern presidency. New York: St. Martin’s Press. Morristown, NJ: General Learning Press.
Shaw, M. (Ed.). (1987). The modern presidency: From Roosevelt to Reagan. New York: Harper and Row.
Smith, S.H., Whitehead, G.I., Melo, A., Correa, A., & Inch, M. (2014). Self-presentational strategies of modern and traditional U.S. Presidents in state of the union and inaugural addresses. North American Journal of Psychology, 15(1), 13-24.
Tulis, J. (1987). The rhetorical presidency. Princeton N.J.: Princeton University Press.
Whitehead, G.I. & Smith, S.H. (1999). Self-presentational strategies of modern and traditional presidents. Journal of Social Behavior and Personality, 14, 479-490.
Whitehead, G.I. & Smith, S.H. (2001). Motive profiles of modern and traditional presidents. Journal of Psychology, 135, 237-240. doi:10.1080/00223980109603694.
Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:
- Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are permitted and encouraged to post their work online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) prior to and during the submission process, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work (See The Effect of Open Access).