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on 20 July 2018

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Rhetorical question is not answered by the writer, because its answer is obvious or obviously desired, and usually just a yes or no.

It is used for effect, emphasis, or provocation, or for drawing a conclusionary statement from the facts at hand.

Often the rhetorical question and its implied answer will lead to further discussion:

But how can we expect to enjoy the scenery when the scenery consists entirely of garish billboards?

Rhetorical Devices - Rhetorical question (erotesis)

Climax (gradatio) consists of arranging words, clauses, or sentences in the order of increasing importance, weight, or emphasis.

To have faults is not good, but faults are human. Worse is to have them and not see them. Yet beyond that is to have faults, to see them, and to do nothing about them. But even that seems mild compared to him who knows his faults, and who parades them about and encourages them as though they were virtues.

Rhetorical Devices - Climax (gradatio)

3 Secrets all inspirational messages share

Assignment – Explain the main points in the following video

Body language
Rhetorical devices

Emotional connection


What makes Obama a great speaker?

Sports champion
A good singer
A great poet
Class president etc.
Make a formal presentation about him/her
Use the following techniques
Visual words
Analogy/ comparisons
Tell a story with him as a hero, who encounters road blocks, emerges transformed or with an experience/lesson to share.\


Present in pairs
30 seconds each


Hyperbole, the counterpart of understatement, deliberately exaggerates conditions for emphasis or effect. In formal writing the hyperbole must be clearly intended as an exaggeration, and should be carefully restricted. That is, do not exaggerate everything, but treat hyperbole like an exclamation point, to be used only once a year. Then it will be quite effective as a table-thumping attention getter, introductory to your essay or some section thereof:

There are a thousand reasons why more research is needed on solar energy.

I said "rare," not "raw." I've seen cows hurt worse than this get up and get well.

Rhetorical Devices - Hyperbole

Diacope: repetition of a word or phrase after an intervening word or phrase as a method of emphasis:

We will do it, I tell you; we will do it.
We give thanks to Thee, 0 God, we give thanks . . . . --Psalm 75:1 (NASB)
I will show you, I promise, I will show you

Rhetorical Devices - Diacope

Sententia: quoting a maxim or wise saying to apply a general truth to the situation; concluding or summing foregoing material by offering a single, pithy statement of general wisdom:

But, of course, to understand all is to forgive all.
As the saying is, art is long and life is short.
For as Pascal reminds us, "It is not good to have all your wants satisfied."

Rhetorical Devices - Sententia:

Pleonasm: using more words than required to express an idea; being redundant. Normally a vice, it is done on purpose on rare occasions for emphasis:

We heard it with our own ears.
That statement is wrong, incorrect, and not true at all in any way, shape, or form.
And lifting up their eyes, they saw no one, except Jesus Himself alone. --Matthew 17:8

Rhetorical Devices - Pleonasm

Analogy compares two things, which are alike in several respects, for the purpose of explaining or clarifying some unfamiliar or difficult idea or object by showing how the idea or object is similar to some familiar one e.g. 500,000KSH can buy you a plot in Kitengela
illustrate one thing by its resemblance to another e.g Black as night
Metaphors and similes are both
types of analogy

Rhetorical Devices - Analogy

Makes a speech powerful

Rhetorical Devices

Sign Posts
I shall discuss, this or that point after or later
I will discuss 3 points, First point, second point etc.

Transitional Formulas
And, but, to turn to,
to return to, to amplify this, to resume to the main point (after a digression),
To go further in the same direction
Rhetorical Devices
Rhetorical question

In speech devices

Summarize speech in figures e.g 3 points to take home
Give a call to action – Let us go out and ……
Promise Hope for the future

NB: Do not give new information

Strong Conclusions

Tell a story
Give personal experience
Give experts opinion on the subject and your agreement or disagreement
Use analogy to explain complicated information e.g figures etc.
Use quotes from respectable people e.g. Mother Teresa
Use statistics to impact clarity e.g every minute 5 people commit suicide (UN 2010)
Use Humor to loosen people up and enhance their retention levels
Ask a question

Strong Starts and Strong Conclusions

Video on communicating your dream

Why Public Speaking is important ?

In Pairs, 30 seconds each, 140 word summary – Twitter style
Find out one interesting aspect of your
partner’s past and their future dream
Full transcript