arguing

 

 

Learning Journal – Entry #5

 

1. Saying Thesis/Previewing Points

It is very important to tell the audience where you are going with an argument before it really begins.  This way, the audience knows exactly what you are trying to prove by the end of the argument.  In addition, we can even notify the audience as to how long we will be speaking for, which is just another way to keep them “in the know.”  By previewing our points, our audience also has an idea of what we will be talking about.  This allows them to think about our points as they hear them and know what order they come in.  Also, we are probably less likely to bore our audience!  If we do not preview our points and give a concise thesis at the beginning, we risk losing members of the audience because if they don’t pay attention for one second they could quite possibly have no idea what you are even arguing about.  In addition, we must remember not to get too involved in our speech (especially if it is a story) that we forget to make these points at the beginning.  It is very important and the #1 point on my list to remember when engaging in argument and debate!

 

2. Displaying Passion and Genuineness

As a speaker, displaying passion and genuineness while arguing is very important.  However, it is not an easy task.  When we speak, we want to connect with our audience.  Moreoever, we want to make them believe us.  Even further, we want to persuade our audience to think what we think, do what we want them to do, etc.  A very good way to achieve this is through displaying passion and genuineness.  Passion and genuineness can be displayed in many ways.  For example, speaking with a smile is a great way to seem passionate.  Also, one’s voice can reveal his/her sense of passion because we have the ability to adjust and raise our voice at times.  This can display emotions like excitement, urgency, the need for everyone’s help, fun, sadness, genuineness, and more.  Displaying passion and genuiness

 

3. Using Evidence

All great arguments will be even greater if they can offer some sort of support, which is most usually in the form of evidence.  Evidence comes in many forms including statistics and expert testimonies – both of which are very effective when trying to persuade.  If other people, and especially people in specific professions, can vouch for believing the same material we believe, we are more likely to persuade the audience towards the way we feel.  Also, if the audience hears statistics (from reliable sources!), they are also lively to be more convinced.  Evidence is a great way to support any argument and it is definitely #3 on my list!

 

4. Displaying Credibility

Displaying credibility is something Spence talks about in his book.  I find it very interesting how we describe the importance and power of credibility when engaging in argument and debate.  According to Spence, one could be the greatest speaker but if he/she does not prove credibility to the audience, you might as well be standing naked.  This was so strange to me when I read it!  However, as I delved in more I did realize how important displaying credibility really is.  Displaying credibility gives a sense of honestly and truth about ourselves and this makes it easier for others to identify with us.  In class, we discussed moving vs. impressing our audience.  Credibility is what moves our audience because we display ourselves as honest people, rather than over powerful, better, or prejudice.  Successful arguments will occur when we reveal our passions and ourselves.  Then, we have displayed credibility and “we stand naked before those to whom we make our arguments” (Spence).

 

5. Paying Attention to Delivery and Content

When getting ready to present an argument (or any speech), there are many things on our minds.  Most people, including myself, can sometimes focus too much on the delivery aspect and forget that the content is what people are actually going to hear you say.  I cannot determine if one is more important than the other is, as they seem to be equal in importance.  We must remember all the great things we think about regarding delivery, but we have to fine tune the content before any speech is ready to actually be delivered.  As a reminder, the content of a speech should always be well organized with a thesis and preview statement at the beginning, points that are backed by good solid evidence, and a conclusion that ties it all together.  Then, we are ready to deliver and we can be confident about the content of what we are saying. 

 

 


Comments:
 
DwayneKilbourne   DwayneKilbourne wrote
on 10/11/2008 4:16:57 PM
I liked many of your points. One thing that is really important is that we use the reliable sources and facts to back up our argument!

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