It's easy to be mediocre, but if you want to give speeches that your audience will never forget, you must listen to this program. With 30 years of lecturing and debating under his belt, Reid Buckley rivals his brother William at the mike. In this program, Buckley covers many of the tips and principles for winning arguments and getting your point across that he taught at the prestigious Buckley School for Public Speaking. Topics included are: defeating your nervousness; building a formidable case that will crush the opposition; developing a speech; how to gesture; one common mistake of public speakers; how to cope with a hostile press; and how to dress.
©1988 by Reid Buckley; (P)1991 by Blackstone Audiobooks
Florid orotund public speech as practiced during the late 19th and early 20th centuries before the age of television sound bytes, and now found only in the oratory of Senator Byrd, the Buckleys, and in Hollywood versions of old Southern lawyers before the jury. Still, this presents an interesting person as well as encapsulates a style, complete with period cultural and political references and salted Latin tags, which won't be seen again. This is your opinionated aged great uncle reliving his past exploits at Thanksgiving dinner--but don't purchase with any expectation of a practical manual of rhetorical techniques. Seneca would be more current; useful as a comparison with one of Ann Coulter's or Al Franken's books to see how we have changed--not necessarily for the better--as a polemical society.
One can easily tell that the author is comfortable and persuasive in front of an audience. Spending 10 hours with him is practice for public speaking in itself. By the end of the book the reader wants to speak as confidently and clearly as the author does and is given good insight into how to do so. A lot of time is spent on debate and logic and personality types (at the front of the book) and the reader gets the sense that Buckley just barely misses conveying the big picture of public speaking (i.e. what is its proper aim?), which would have been very helpful. But ultimately one does find countless tips throughout the book that will assist development. At the very least, the reader is treated to time with a very enchanting personality--rare these days--and that is worth the book's cost alone.
This book was rather disappointing. The material is dated with emphasis on the sport of debating. Some of it is timeless but it sure is a great deal of work sorting through it all to find the nuggets. Buckley is of an older generation and shows off his vast mind and vocabulary. However, I found it odd to hear this man who reaks pomposity from every pore to speak about not being pompous. For practical advice, Buckley quotes Valenti and his technique at length. I came away convinced that I would have been better to have skipped this book and listened to Valenti's instead.
mr. buckley covers the practical, technical and performance components of public speaking and debate. he gives a keen insight in to the mindset of those on the lecture and debate circuit. his command of english is superb, his content thorough, and his Rooseveltesque accent an aural treat.
Elder Statesman Doctor
This man surprises by occasionally referring to his losses in a debate, but mostly refers to the importance of being overly educated and pompous like he is. And his pomposity is most overbearing when he mispronounces American words in his pseudo British accent. For example, he mispronounces "cache" as "cash - a", which is correctly pronounced "cash", ignoring the "e" at the end of the word. If he didn't do similar mispronunciations some 50 or 100 times with multiple words, I wouldn't mention this, but I found it most irritating that he couldn't look these up before recording this. Next the book disappoints by spending all it's time on talking about how to win in a debate, not about public speaking, which is what I thought at least a reasonable amount of time would be devoted to. Next, the book is extremely outdated, with all his arguments coming from the 1980's. This desperately needs to be updated, being some 20 years behind the times. His references are so old they don't include the Fall of the Soviet Empire, much less 9/11 etc. Finally, the only reason I didn't give one star is because there is some rudimentary information about how to research a debate that may be of interest to someone on the Harvard Debate Team.
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