Mark twain a presidential candidate

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mark twain a presidential candidate

A Presidential Candidate by Mark Twain

You may read online at LibraryofAmerica.

“Mark Twain as a Presidential Candidate” appeared in 1879, the year before the race between James A. Garfield, the Republican candidate, and Winfield Scott Hancock, the Democrat. Although Twain found much to ridicule in politics and politicians, he was hardly reluctant to get involved or curry favor. A jubilant supporter of Garfield’s bid for the presidency, he delivered a mocking “funeral oration” for the Democratic Party at an election night victory celebration in Hartford.

Opening lines:
I have pretty much made up my mind to run for President. What the country wants is a candidate who cannot be injured by investigation of his past history, so that the enemies of the party will be unable to rake up anything against him that nobody ever heard of before. If you know the worst about a candidate, to begin with, every attempt to spring things on him will be checkmated.
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A Presidential Candidate Analysis

A Presidential Candidate is a man which everyone believes to be honest and trustworthy. He displays himself as being the ideal person but usually the press usually can dig up junk on him. In "A Presidential Candidate," Twain evokes a sarcastic tone in order to mock Presidential Candidates by using diction, selection of detail, and irony. Twain uses diction to mock the presidential candidate. Twain states how the Congressional committee "prowl" around his biography in hope of discovering any dirt on Twain. Twain is mocking how even though a Presidential Candidate looks clean, there is always people waiting to dig up dirt on him.

However, let me get to the point. In fact, I suggest you ignore my post, and just click on the link below to read it yourself. Sometimes, I think, we forget — at least I do — how little things have changed really. I have pretty much made up my mind to run for President. What the country wants is a candidate who cannot be injured by investigation of his past history, so that the enemies of the party will be unable to rake up anything against him that nobody ever heard of before.

Instead of having people digging up his past, he decides to put everything he has done in his life out in the open for everyone to know. He wants to go into the election with an open record but he definitely has had an interesting past and admits to many corrupt deeds such as killing his grandfather and burying his dead aunt under his grapevine. He is open and honest about his past and feels that if he is open about the worst parts of his record and if people do not like him, he will not let it bother him. His choice of words and attention to detail sets the sarcastic tone and it is inferred that is mocking a presidential candidate. Twain also uses irony in this satire when describing his past.

“Mark Twain as a Presidential Candidate” appeared in , the year before the race between James A. Garfield, the Republican candidate.
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S President Barack Obama once asked, Do we participate in a politics of cynicism or a politics of hope? The politics of the last 50 years have changed the political landscape to the point that it no longer matters what a candidate does or say he will do; rather, its about smearing the reputation of the opposition. Mark Twain certainly wouldnt be shocked at the current direction the American political system is heading, for in his satirical piece, A Presidential Candidate, he criticizes the need of the candidates to attack each others reputation instead of focusing on their own redeeming qualities, by entering the race and portraying himself as the only candidate worthy of votes. Twain achieves his goal through the utilization of diction and irony. Twain employs diction to expose the shamefulness of attacking other candidates because the lack of confidence in ones self.

3 thoughts on “A Presidential Candidate by Mark Twain

  1. Mark Twain, “A Presidential Candidate”. Mark Twain (–) From The 50 Funniest American Writers: An Anthology of Humor from Mark.

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