"A call to action" Mr. Obama being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize
When the Committee awarded President Obama the Nobel Peace Prize it said that "Only very rarely has person to the same extent as Obama captured the world's attention and given its people hope for a better future". And unlike his predecessors Obama was elected not for substantive accomplishments, but for his "vision" and inspiring hope at the beginning of his presidency.
Bringing together the hope and idealism of the community organizer and the sophistication and strategizing of a seasoned (perhaps lightly seasoned) Chicago politician, Obama does indeed seek believable change—a grassroots, bottom-up revitalization of American democracy, built on the spirit of service and the many efforts of the many, duly aided by the more far-sighted elites. But at heart, he has voiced through one policy position after another an urgent sense that the future is not given us, but must be created in a new mold, for the sake of future generations.
Obama's acceptance speech when he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize and his speech in front of the Norwegian Nobel Committee moved artfully between the sense of "promise" as a ground for expectation and "promise" as a specific pledge, as a saying that is a doing.
In rhetorical terms, this is an artful move from forensic or juridical oratory concerning the past, through epideictic or demonstrative oratory concerning the present, to
that deliberative or hortative oratory concerning the future, choices to be made together. With Obama, the accent is always on the latter, the future as consensus and climax.