Date of Award


Document Type



Rhetoric & Comm Studies


Rhetoricians such as Robert Ivie and George Lakoffhave examined the use of language of opposition to create and control various enemies during the War on Terror, but they have also ignored or overlooked numerous cases. This paper will examine one such case, that of Muammar al-Gaddafi, whose reciprocal violence eventually succumbed to the oppressor's global economic power. This case study will explore how the U.S. government rhetorically constructed Gaddafi in order to control both his identity within American society (as either an enemy or an ally), as well as the counter-violence that Gaddafi supposedly enacted against Western systems of power. This essay aims to bring to light the circumstances of Gaddafi' s situation that lies between the two poles of the imposed binary and to ultimately question the faulty rhetorical system with which the U.S. government justifies its violent foreign policies.

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Rhetoric Commons