Persuasion

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  • As you are developing your topic for this speech. Please keep in mind that you are advocating for a position. You are not simply arguing a truth, but your goal is to CHANGE BEHAVIORS.
  • An example of a bad topic would be, coke vs. pepsi. It is probably based mainly on opinion. There is no should statement. Who cares!
  • Why we should drink coca-cola. At least this has a should statement. You can move beyond comparison. You can focus on more than opinion. Such as: Coke sponsors the Olympics, Coke hires millions of people, etc. But it is still a bit vague
  • Why we should not drink soda. It is advocating, like the previous topic. It is a bit more ethical and related more to your audience. It highlights a problem, then offers a solution:
  • All good persuasive topics feature: A Problem. You have to convince your audience that there is a potential problem. In the previous example, we can say that obesity is the problem, or diabetes. A Cause: You then have to attribute the problem to some sort of behavior currently occurring. In this example, the drinking of coke is the cause of obesity. A solution: You have to advocate a new behavior that will counter the cause and address the solution. By avoiding coke, we eliminate one of the causes of diabetes, thus contributing to the solution.
  • The first category of topics I want you to avoid is the don’t eat babies speeches. These are the speeches where your solution is obvious. Topics such as “You should not smoke” or “You Should not Drink and Drive” fall into this category. It is already obvious that you should not do this, so the topic is not worth the time. We all know we should not eat babies, just as we know it is unhealthy to smoke, or that we should exercise more.
  • Anyone can come up with positive arguments. For example, I could easily argue that my mom is jesus: 1. She is forgiving, Jesus is forgiving, 2. She healed me when I was ill, Jesus cured the ill, 3. She is loving, Jesus is loving. However, she did not cure the blind, she can’t walk on water, and people do not worship her. The idea for your speech is to argue the counterpoints of the audience. Think about why people would disagree with you and counter that. I hear this often. In legalizing marijuana speeches, I hear all the positives of marijuana, but they rarely address the concerns of people who are against it. Thus, they are not persuasive.
  • We are in college now, so the same old boring, cliché topics should be avoided. Do not write speeches on the following: Global Warming Abortion Death Penalty Drinking and Driving Smoking As with the last speech, think “unique” angle. The more specific the better.

Transcript

  • 1. • 5-7 Minute Speech• Advocate the use of a product, service, or behavior.• Highlight Problem, Offer a Solution• Include “SHOULD” in your thesis statement.• Minimum of Four Sources• No audience required for this one.
  • 2. Discuss the last time you were persuaded. This could be anything from purchasing a product or service, to doingsomething you do not usuallydo. Explain why they were soeffective. Be specific, what did they do.