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How to Make a Political Speech
KEY WORDS: IN MAKING A POLITICAL SPEECH SPEAK POSITIVELY, AND ADDRESS YOURSELF DIFFERENTLY TO DIFFERENT AUDIENCES.
Election is approaching, and you have thrown yourself heart and soul into promoting the cause of your party.
You have been asked to speak in various places.
What sort of speech is the best political speech?
Follow these suggestions:
1. Adapt yourself to your audience.
That is one of the secrets of speech that aided in giving Mr. William J. Bryan his great reputation as a speaker.
Do not make the mistake of speaking in the same way to all audiences.
Some audiences will follow you best if you speak calmly and thoughtfully.
Others need to be aroused by witty anecdotes, by loud voice, and by intense vigor of every sort.
Measure your audience and speak accordingly.
2. Make a general point of contact by telling some humorous story applicable to the situation. Follow this by a second, and a third. Make your audience laugh, and you will draw eager attention.
3. Speak emphatically of the leading principles of your party or candidate.
All audiences are quick to grasp fundamental principles. It is probable that most of the people more or less understand the principles you will present. In any case, you will gain a point of contact with the serious thought of the audience by speaking first of principles.
4. Now proceed to giving a small number of statistics that can be remembered, to show that your principles are well founded. Drive these statistics, few in number, home by repetition. Emphasize them and their value in every possible way.
5. In the course of your speech present one or two original slogans.
Frame your slogans so that they will carry your thought. You cannot expect your audience to remember much of your speech, but you can expect it to remember the slogans. Repeat the slogans again and again, and teach' them to your hearers. In one election campaign certain speakers produced great effect by constantly repeating the excellent slogan: "Vote for the full dinnerpail!"
6. If at any time in your speech you find even a slight flagging of interest relate some humorous anecdote. You should prepare beforehand a list of such anecdotes, and should be ready to use them when needed. They are "oratorical-life-savers."
7. Present one or two challenges to your opponents. Prepare these carefully beforehand. Make them center on the weak points in your opponents' arguments. Make your challenge such that your opponents will wish to avoid answering it. Say (for example): "I challenge any member of the opposing party to show that that party has ever at any time called for an investigation of the public service corporations of this city."
Emphasize your challenges by repetition, and by demanding an answer to be given at some future time.
8. Speak in personal praise of your candidate.
Give specific instances to prove his ability.
Point out the steps in his career, and show how he has shown ability in every place he has filled.
Point out some of his distinctly "human" and democratic characteristics. . Nothing pleases an audience more than the intimate touch of humanity.
9. Speak loudly.
10. Watch every part of your audience and pick out individuals here and there whom you address particularly.
11. Don't drink water during the course of, your speech.
12. Avoid standing in one position.
13. Do not enter into any controversy with an individual.
14. At all times remember that you are speaking to the entire audience.
15. Never, never, never use invective. It always reacts on the speaker.
A recent candidate for office threw away his election by basing his campaign on invective.
Do not charge your opponents with being knaves and fools.
16. Speak positively of what your candidate stands for.
17. Make a strong link between the principles of your party and the prevailing principles of your particular audience.
Think out the lines of a political speech in favor of a man now in office.
How to Give a Public Lecture
KEY WORDS: IN GIVING A LECTURE MAINTAIN A CONSTANT POINT OF CONTACT BETWEEN YOUR AUDIENCE AND YOUR SUBJECT.
A lecture is a somewhat dignified, extended address on a single topic, usually for the purpose of instruction. It has for a secondary purpose the giving of pleasure. Both purposes are essential.
When you give a lecture bear in mind the following:
1. Give definite information.
2. Produce the effect of pleasure.
Many lecturers fail because they omit one or the other of these purposes which audiences expect.
Other reasons for failure are the following:
1. Failure to make a point of contact.
2. Failure to use clear language.
3. Failure to use familiar illustrations.
4. Failure to speak to the point.
5. Failure to be brief.