Quotes for Public Speakers (No. 245) – Aristotle

Aristotle (384 BC – 322 BC) Greek Philosopher

“An emotional speaker always makes his audience feel with him, even when there is nothing in his arguments; which is why many speakers try to overwhelm their audience by mere noise.”

— Aristotle


About John Zimmer

International speaker, presentation skills expert, lawyer, improv performer
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6 Responses to Quotes for Public Speakers (No. 245) – Aristotle

  1. Fae Hicks says:

    From whence does this quote come, I need to reference it and would greatly appreciate the title of the book in which it was written.

  2. The uneducated want to hear things clearly and to the point. They like to get “pumped up” about things! It makes it simple and easy to believe. Then the addition of saying it over and over again is the perfect recipe for electing a fascist. It’s hard to read a quote like this right now and not think of Donald.

  3. Andy Jonas says:

    I guess the Trumps, Christies, and Palins of the World are nothing new. Their bluster, mere noise, and “word salad” delivery evades a good argument or important point. The tragic success of such a speaker is the measure of an impoverished and ignorant audience. Apologies for the possible political invectives.

    • John Zimmer says:

      No need to apologize. I agree with you.

      It is also worth recalling another insight from Aristotle:

      “It is this simplicity that makes the uneducated more effective than the educated when addressing popular audiences—makes them, as the poets tell us, ‘charm the crowd’s ears more finely’. Educated men lay down broad general principles; uneducated men argue from common knowledge and draw obvious conclusions.”

      The potential danger is that the “obvious” conclusions might not be real, but rather what the speaker wants us to believe is real. I wrote about the potent simplicity of Donald Trump in this post.

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