The purpose of this paper is to analyse the rhetoric of Habibie's speeches in order to explain his rhetorical strategies in intensifying Indonesian science and technology development using Kenneth Burke's ‘dramatistic analysis’. It examines significant key terms selected from Habibie's campaign speeches (1983–1993), discusses the symbolic relationships among the key elements of the drama of Indonesian technology development, as well as interprets the rhetor's strategies and motivations. It also describes the significance of Habibie's roles in recent political develompent with the background of Indonesian ideologies and traditional values. It concludes that Habibie's rhetoric points to ‘technologically modern society’ as the national goal, technologists and scientists as the leaders, and intensive science and technology development as the means, which marks a dramatic change in the already changing traditional concepts of development, political leadership and prosperity.
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