Barack Obama's political life can be demarcated by a series of major addresses in which he spoke to the nation with a voice uniquely his own. His eloquence, both written and spoken, propelled him to national prominence and ultimately made it possible for the son of a Kenyan man and a white woman from Kansas to become the first black president of the United States.
As president, Obama's words had the power to move the country, and often the world, as few presidents before him. Whether acting as Commander in Chief or Consoler in Chief, Obama adopted a unique rhetorical style that could simultaneously speak to the national mood and change the course of public events.
We Are the Change We Seek is a collection of Obama's 26 greatest addresses: beginning with his 2002 speech opposing the Iraq War and closing with his final speech before the United Nations in September 2016. These talks span his career--from his time in state government through to the end of his tenure as president--and the issues most important to our time: war, inequality, race relations, gun violence and human rights. Brief introductory remarks explain the context for each address. The book opens with an essay placing Obama's oratorical contributions within the flow of American history by E.J. Dionne Jr., columnist and author of Why The Right Went Wrong, and Joy Reid, the host of AM Joy on MSNBC and author of Fracture.