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Business English, Professional English, Legal English, Medical English, Academic English etc.
Online peer-reviewed Journal for Teachers

English for Specific Purposes World (ESP World)

English for Specific Purposes World

ISSN 1682-3257

English for Specific Purposes World (ESP World) Home    Information   ESP Encyclopaedia    Resources    Contacts

On “Yes, We Can”: Linguistics Power and Possibility

Krishna K. Bista, MA, MED, MSPSE

Department of English

Troy University, Alabama, USA

kbista@troy.edu

Abstract

In this article I address a hitherto used buzz phrase in English, “Yes, we can.”  This phrase represents various forms of meanings—challenge, possibility, ability, permission and opportunity in social, political and linguistics domains. I consider the syntactic and the semantic properties of "Yes, we can." I also compare its conventional usages with more recent treatments. The catch phrase "Yes, we can" has standard usage in sports, music, language, literature and politics. Candidate Obama elevated it as a slogan in his presidential campaign.

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