Sunday, February 27, 2011

Mary Beard on Oratory

Courtesy of Farnum Street (an interesting blog that I discovered), classicist Mary Beard writes an interesting reflection on oratory as occasioned by the wide acclaim give to the King's Speech. This is a fascinating topic, especially if one has to persuade others (and we all do). Speeches in the public arena are challenging or uplifting or most often, awful. But when one hears a great one, say Churchill or Martin Luther King, Jr., one can be moved and one's mind and disposition changed. However, the flip side of this coin is demagoguery, and now it comes in large quantities of sound bites from hideously small minds. Perhaps TV has ruined the art, and now we only get foul noise.

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