Sunday, March 30, 2014

3.31.14 - Building your argument

Daniel Goldstein's TED Talk

  • You are the product. You, feeling something. That’s what sells.
  • Daniel make three types of appeals in his speech:
    • Rational 
    • Illustrative/Narrative 
    • Emotional 
  • Critique - let's get used to critiquing everything, even if we "like" it:
    • How does Daniel balance the conversational, scripted and performative styles of speech?
    • Where are his strengths/weaknesses?
Outlining Basics
  • Outlines serve the purpose of a roadmap for your argument; I only need to see the roads, I don’t need a satellite-view of all of the details. Just like it’s harder to plot out directions on Google Earth rather than Google maps.
    • No outline that look like you took a script and bulleted it.
    • That said, your outline should be specific to YOUR speech. It shouldn’t be so general that I can’t tell your outline apart from your classmates’.
  • Thesis Statement Writing/Outline Creation
    • Thesis = crux of argument
      • Supporting argument 1
        • Illustrative Example
      • Supporting argument 2
        • Illustrative Example
      • Supporting argument 3
        • Illustrative Example
  • Logic/Reasoning
    • Inductive versus deductive
      • Inductive starts with a set of examples/observations/data that lead to a general conclusion (theory)
      • Relies on general-enough examples that your audience won’t think of your data as an anomaly
    • Deductive starts with general rules or theories and uses it to say something about specific examples or data
      • This is the part where generalizing assumptions are dangerous - make sure you aren’t taking for granted a premise upon which your whole argument is based without making sure your audience supports it
  • Exercise: Working backwards and translating Lewis Black's rant into an organized outline:

The power of Vulnerability
  • As we watch this video please be prepared to discuss:
    • the strengths of this speech in relation to the three approaches to public speaking. 
    • the ways in which the content of her speech is complemented to her style of speech making.
    • how the message of her speech can be applied to the upcoming Past/Present/Future speech assignment.

Listening and Ethics

  • No decision a speaker makes is politically or morally neutral. When you speak, you are by default editing by choosing what to say and what not to say; you are therefore issuing value and importance to various topics.
  • Be aware of your own personal/cultural/political biases. We all have frameworks that we use to make sense of the world. 

  • Linda Alcoff’s “The Problem of Speaking for Others.”

    • Determine your intentions: are your intentions to teach, or to learn?
    • Determine your vantage point: where does your cultural perspective differ from the perspective you are performing?
    • Be open to criticism
    • Predict what, if any, outcomes may be harmful, or perceived as harmful by members of the cultural perspective you are presenting

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