Powerful Public Speaking from Winston Churchill

Winston Churchill's Way With Words : NPR

Churchill still matters.  An exhibit at the Morgan Library reveals how the Lion of Britain developed what he is best known for — his powerful rhetoric.

Churchill wasn’t born a master orator — he overcame a childhood lisp by practicing enunciation. He understood the power of words early in his career.

As a 23-year-old British soldier in India, Churchill wrote an essay called “The Scaffolding of Rhetoric.” The original manuscript is in the Morgan exhibition.

“The climax of oratory is reached by a rapid succession of waves of sound and vivid pictures,” Churchill wrote.

via Winston Churchill’s Way With Words : NPR.

Giving a little context Edward Rothstein observes:

So you won’t really be able to understand that there was a period — between Germany’s beginning to bomb England in 1940 (killing more than 40,000) and the United States’ entrance to the war at the end of 1941 — when England might well have fallen or made generous accommodation to German demands, had Churchill not been a master of words and ideas, rallying his “great island nation” as prime minister with promises of blood, toil, tears and sweat.

But you will see enough to get a sense of what his wartime leadership meant.

via Successes in Rhetoric: Language in the Life of Churchill – NYT


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