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Bernie Sanders Genre Analysis

Kristopher Martinez
University of El Paso at Texas


The President of the United States will be declared later in the year of 2016.
Bernie Sanders is behind Hillary Clinton in the Democratic Party. Two genres that are
being used in order to fuel there campaign is through videos and articles. The video by
Bernie Sanders, “I believe America is ready for a new path to the future”, is to support
Sanders campaign, which gives a little glimpse on what he is hoping to change within the
future. The article by Harry Enten, “Its Gets Harder For Here For Bernie Sanders”,
informs the public about the state of New Hampshire and how the Democratic Party
stands with the caucus votes. In this essay it will help analyze the different genres that are
used to approach and persuade a specific discourse community towards the 2016
presidential campaign.
Audience and Purpose Question
These two genres have different intentions as for what audience they are reaching
out too. Overall the audience that this is intended for is the supporters of Bernie Sanders
and anyone who is interested in the presidential election. For the video, its discourse
communities are the Caucasian youth and the middle class like farmers (Sanders, 2016).
As for the article it does not have a selective community compared to the clip because, it
is intended to inform for Bernie Sanders supporters and the subscribers to the website.
Now that the audience has been determined they all have different knowledge and
understanding when it comes to politics. The audience in the clip is likely to know that
Bernie Sanders is supporting the middle class and the youth due to the images that were
being portrayed. The audience is interested on Bernie Sanders campaign, although there
is a lack of information that causes the clip to be more focused on the supporters he
already has. In the opposite genre the audience is likely to know that Bernie Sanders


triumphed Hillary Clinton in the state of New Hampshire, from the title of the article. The
audience will question what problems Sanders will be facing after he executed a great
campaign with momentum on his side. Time spent on the visual genre is limited to one
minute, in all about five minutes to fully comprehend the message. On the other hand the
article is more time involving due to its length in reading. To fully understand it will take
about 20-30 minutes after going through the article and different graphs and charts it
obtains. The purpose for the clip is to convince others voters to vote for Sanders. While
the article is to inform about Bernie Sanders and the challenges he is going to confront in
the more diverse states like Nevada.
Rhetorical Issues
In order to inform and persuade each genre approaches rhetorical issues in their
own manner to best suite their genre. For the videos ethos is demonstrated through the
different visuals of the middle-class for example farmers, and youth is seen in the rallies
in different universities that are supporting Sanders. With these supporters Sanders’ is
seen in massive rallies, also interacting with his supporters outside of the rallies (Sanders,
2016). The article is published on a website that has built its credibility in politics and
other important issues such as culture, economics, and sports on a global base (Enten,
Pathos is presented through emotion within the video as for the article it is
expressed with information on the Sanders and Clinton standings. The video clip begins
with different images of farmers maintaining there life stock like cows, calves, and sheep.
They are with their families in clean attire with heart-warming weather such as cloudy
skies and snow already settled on the ground. The rallies are loaded with supporters filled


with joy and excitement with smiles from ear to ear, jumping and cheering chants. The
video begins and ends with “AMERICA” (Sanders, 2016) in large letters taking up the
center of the space provided, behind is Sanders speaking in a rally that is off a port with
marvelous scenery. Empathy is the emotion presented in the article. The author
understands that although Sanders came on top in New Hampshire, Clinton was leading
into this state. Now they are facing states that are more diverse, where Clinton has
planned-ahead building her foundation with the African and Latino American vote
(Enten, 2016).
Logos is presented straight forward in the article but as for the video it is almost
nonexistent. In the clip logos is denser due to the lack of information, although it presents
the colors red, white, and blue to help present Sanders in a patriotic manner. Also plenty
of repetition with the color green in order to help express his standing toward protecting
the environment. In the article it states that he won big, “He earned 60 percent of the vote
in New Hampshire and won nearly every town and cite in the city in the state”(Enten,
2016). With in this quote it contains a link to present the primary election results that
shows 60.4 percent with 15 delegates to Sanders, 38 percent and nine delegates to Clinton
(Enten, 2016). This article does a superb job citing its reason by relating the voting
patterns with the state across all counties and also does a comparison to 2008 election.
The video did have a shortfall of presenting reason because someone who is not a
supporter may not be easily convinced with the images portrayed.
In order facilitate a message structure is key in order for the reader and or the
viewer can full comprehend the information that is being presented. The structure in the


video is shaped by the different images to portray that the people are ready for change in
the future. With the video being one minute long Bernie Sanders has a short window to
present a “new path to the future”. Throughout the video people are going on the their
daily duties whether it be feeding there toddlers or maintaining livestock: these people
are also shown participating in Sanders rallies in order to convey that the common family
and college student is on board with his campaign so the viewer should be too! By
showing interest in these individuals the viewer is able to facilitate Sanders support base
involving the middle-class and also the youth.
The article has a structure in order to ensure that the reader can fully understand
the position of these two candidates at that time. It presents the strong victory that
Sanders campaign conducted in New Hampshire. Also includes the different voting
patterns that took place in this state. The author is able to facilitate the purpose by
bringing in prior states where Sanders did not win as well as the states they are traveling
to next where Clinton has been building her momentum with the diverse vote being on
here side. The article finishes with the past election that took place in 2008 where Obama
was ahead of Clinton in the state as well.
The style to the video is kept formal and professional with images that relate to
the American middle-class. Although there is no words spoken within the video the song
in the background is almost like a humming tune that touches the soul. A downfall to the
video would be the little interest in the diverse minority vote.
Language that was expressed in the article is in a level that ages 12 and up will
understand but not bore the more advanced readers. The author kept it formal all


throughout its structure not siding with either party but informing where each of their
campaign has lead them to up to New Hampshire. For specialized vocabulary the author
includes the different voting polls that help structure and facilitate its information.
In conclusion the article genre was more effective because it presented a more
reasonable argument and was simply easier to buy into. The clip was too vague in
attempting to convey its message of building a new path for the future. The clip was
focused towards his supporters not allowing the outside discourse communities to buy
into its message. As for the article it presented valuable information and support to
convey its message not only to the discourse community within the websites subscribers
but also to anyone interested in the Democratic Party standings.


Sanders, B. (2016, February). I believe America is ready for a new path to the future.
Enthen, H. (2016). It gets harder from here for Bernie Sanders. FiveThirtyEight.