So today what I'd like to talk about is
the, the, the differences that go into
We can talk about this in terms of
So, let's sort of imagine a scenario,
it's not a wildly Unheard of scenario
that's probably being experienced right
now by hundreds of thousands of people
across the globe.
Which is the weekly office meeting.
All right, so imagine you have to give a
presentation at a, at the weekly office
At this presentation, you need to provide
an update on the project that you've been
working on, okay?
And let's say your project is maybe a
little bit over budget and it's certainly
so you want to have a good presentation,
you want to sort of maintain your
credibility in the office, you want to
look good in front of your office mates.
And certainly in front of your boss but
there are all sorts of conditions that
have gone into this type of presentation.
Well generally, it's a business
presentation, so you're operating within
the genre expectations of what a business
presentation looks like.
in the 21st century, your office has some
specific norms that have emerged.
Maybe let's say the room is particularly
hot or one area really smells bad and
everyone tends to stand at the podium and
not walk around.
So there are expectations.
Okay, all of this effect what you're
going to be able to do in that particular
Some of these are big, right?
And some of them you can overcome.
Maybe you send an e-mail around the night
before with your notes for the
So that way, people know what you're
So that's helped with clarity but there
are a number of socio-cultural issues
that are coming to bear on this one
That office presentation, by the way, is
going to look very different if it's in
Riyad, or if it's in Berlin, or if it's
in Caracas, right?
So, we're talking about public speaking,
which is really a very specific response
to a specific set of constraints, but
we're doing so in a course on Coursera
which is aimed at a global audience.
Understand these speaking situations is
key to understanding what this course is
Now in an older rendition in Rhetorical
Studies we called these rhetorical
And so the theory was a good speech, a
good speaker is one who responded well to
a number of different constraints, These
would include the topic Right, so there
are certain things that you could say
about a particular topic.
the audience and what their expectations
were for this individual presentation the
Okay, what is the norm of business
meetings in general?
The setting, the room itself the
Did you get caught in a lie two weeks
That's a constraint you now have to deal
with in addressing this audience and
many, many more types of constraints.
Now, all of these by the way are flexible
You can affect some of them.
Some of them you adapt to.
But the issue is there are so many
factors that go into shaping the
situation you step into when you deliver
Now, why go into all of this?
For this very simple reason, and this is
something you probably already know, but
it bears repeating.
There is no one single form of effective
public speaking, there's just not.
There's no Esperanto of public speaking,
it doesn't exist.
So in designing this class, this class
that your'e now enrolled in, we had to
make a coupla decisions, okay.
So we can't teach to the one form of
speech that works for all people across
all topics, across all cultures, across
We can't teach you to that, because it
On the other side, we can't teach to
every form of public speaking that will
work for every speaker across every
situation, looking at all these different
ways of being successful.
Can't do that either, it would take a
So what are we doing instead.
In this class, we're going to focus on
A couple of key skills.
And the idea is you can take these skills
with you into these various speaking
You can adapt these skills into those
and, the goal is not, and this may sound
odd, the goal is not to deliver a good
The goal of this course is to become a
And that's more than simply clever
And it is clever phrasing.
But the goal is to become a good speaker,
so imagine sort of a sports analogy.
So my, my sport was skiing, downhill
Although, this would work for soccer or
any sort of sports analogy.
So in skiing, you had to understand what
you were doing, but on that given slope,
you had to adapt to all the various
changes swirling around you.
Okay, other skiers coming in, the nature
of the mountain, how, how much visibility
you had, how cold it was.
If you're in soccer.
You want someone who's a good soccer
player, not someone who can just kick the
Because soccer requires a deep skill set
and a dynamic sense of judgement, right?
You don't just march down the field with
the ball, you'll get it taken, and you'll
But instead what you want is someone who
can control the ball who has those core
elemental skills, but can adapt to the
situation in a fluid and dynamic way.
So, we're going to be focusing on skills.
Now, what are these skills?
At the broadest level, these skills are,
designing clear presentations and
delivering them in an engaging way.
So, why just these?
because these are the ones that are
going to track across a whole range of
What types of speeches are these useful
Many, if not, most, okay.
So, being clear and being engaging, this
is tremendously useful when you are
designing speech presentations, or when
you're speaking in class, or when you're
Any time you need to be clear and
engaging for an audience.
Okay, now there are some times when maybe
these skills are not going to be as
Those times might be, eulogies, right?
That would probably be inappropriate.
He was a good man for two reasons.
First, you know, that violates those norm
Eulogies, by the way, think about that.
That's going to vary wildly from culture
to culture, from religious tradition to
religious tradition, so I mean, that's so
heavily encoded by those contexts, that
clear and engaging may not be
But this is going to work in almost all
speech settings where you want to engage
that audience, and have them understand
the nature of your claims, the nature of
Now poetry, right?
You, you may not want to be clear in
No one's reading, you know, Robert
Frost's so I stopped on a, or you know, I
the road less traveled by be different.
Right, that's now what you want.
Poetry is about engaging the emotionality
of the language OK, but in this calss we
are going to focus on clear speech and
Ultimately this class emerges from a
particular type of tradition.
We are, in the next lecture we are going
to be talk about rhetorical tradition.
It's very useful.
It's going to affect how we talk through
these different assignments.
We'll, unpack those assignments a little
this is clearly a rhetorical tradition.
So that has some Western connotations to
but we're choosing clarity of speech and
But ultimately I want this discussion of
these skill to blossom into a more robust
discussion in the discussion forums and
the online forums that we have in this
So, let's get to it.
Let me acknowledge this article first. It was there on my PC for long time. I forgot the name of the author hence dedicating this articles to that unknown person. Thanks.
So today what I'd like to talk about is
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