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The frequency of ‘America’ in America

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From nascent European colonies to a global superpower, the United States of America has risen in many aspects throughout its history. One such aspect is rhetoric. Specifically, each successive American president speaks more and more frequently of America. In this talk, we will examine historical speeches from present day Barack Obama to the founding father George Washington who in 1790 first addressed congress in what has now come to be known as the State of the Union (SOTU) address. Across the 227 years worth of SOTU speeches and written reports as well as inaugural addresses, we will track the usage of one specific word, “America,” and attempt to predict the rhetoric of the profoundly unpredictable President Donald Trump. This talk is based on the winning article of the Royal Statistical Society’s 2016 Young Statisticians Writing Competition.

This talk is part of the Cambridge Statistics Discussion Group (CSDG) series.

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