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New York Times Upfront:
10 speeches that made history.

"A SPEECH IS POETRY: CADENCE, RHYTHM, IMAGERY, SWEEP!" said Peggy Noonan, a speechwriter for President Ronald Reagan. "A speech reminds us that words ... have the power to make dance the dullest beanbag of a heart."

Indeed, when written and delivered well, speeches can change minds, stir people to action (both positive and negative), and even alter the course of history. Here are excerpts from some of America's most important speeches, why they mattered in their time--and why they...

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