Monday, December 1, 2008

can famous speeches boost eloquence?

When you can't access training, afford a speechwriter, or come up with a great idea, using existing famous speeches as a jumping-off point is one of my favorite practice methods. You can read a speech for rhetorical flourishes, analyze what made it powerful, and even read it aloud to practice your delivery skills.

I'm a big fan of the American Rhetoric website, where you can search text, audio and video of famous speakers and find a host of other resources (like figures of speech and examples of how to use them). Now, Michael Eidenmuller, Ph.D., founder of the site and an associate professor of speech communication at the University of Texas at Tyler, shares secrets you can learn from great speeches in Great Speeches For Better Speaking. Two women are featured among the six major speeches analyzed in the book, which says you can:
  • Use Mary Fisher's special rhetorical tactics to sway even the toughest audience
The book includes an audio CD so you can learn by listening to the speeches for their full effect. The site is frequently updated, and includes General Ann Dunwoody's speech at the ceremony promoting her to four-star general November 14.

Buy Great Speeches For Better Speaking