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Controlling an argument, Pop-Up Rhetoric style!

This is the fourth pop-up rhetoric video created from the speech analyses in my book, The Handy Communication Answer Book. These four videos are something of mini-series within my larger Pop-Up Rhetoric video series, so be sure to check out my other pop-up rhetoric videos on YouTube! 

Control: that’s what debates are all about. Are you able to get the upper hand and control the focus of the argument so you come out in front? Does your choice of words re-frame issues and refocus emotions? Are you in command of the direction of the argument, or are you always scrambling to keep up with your opponent?

In this video, we’re dialing back a few years to the 1980 presidential elections and the final debate between Carter and Regan. These two deliver a master class in how to subtly shift questions and issues so that listeners focus on your strengths and hopefully get distracted from your weak points. Check out the strategies that both Carter and Regan employ (with varying degrees of success) in their struggle to get and maintain the upper hand in this part of the debate. Some of the tactics they use might surprise you…and give you ideas for ways you can master your arguments and debates!




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