The Five Canons of Rhetoric

Crafting Clear and Effective Communications

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PaulTessier

During World War II, Winston Churchill gave weekly radio addresses to bolster the confidence of the British people, to allay their fears, and to remind them that they were fighting for a worthy cause.

His oratory during this time is now legendary. In the early days of the war, the United Kingdom stood alone, yet Churchill’s rhetoric convinced its people to remain strong. He encouraged feelings of patriotism, commitment, and sacrifice with his words, his voice and his timing.

Churchill's deep understanding of rhetoric, and his knowledge of how to use it to inspire and persuade others, had an enormous impact on British morale. In this article, we'll look at how you can use rhetoric yourself to communicate clearly, and persuade your audience more effectively.

What is Rhetoric?

Rhetoric is the ancient art of persuasion through speaking or writing.

Over the years, politicians and advertisers have given it a bad name. Some people associate it with "bending the truth," unethical communication or even manipulation. You might also associate rhetoric with "hype" or "spin."

However, rhetoric is nothing more than clear, effective communication and persuasion. It's a way to immerse yourself deeply in a subject, express your ideas clearly, and share your knowledge with others....

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