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SomePersuasiveTechniques

Weusepersuasivelanguagetoconvinceotherstoagreewithourfacts,shareourvalues,acceptour
argument,andadoptourwayofthinking.Therearemanydifferentwaystopersuadepeople.Herearesome
techniques:

Appeals
Canpersuadetheaudiencebylinkingtowhatheor
shecaresaboutmost.

Onepersuasivetechniqueisappealingtothe
audience's:
Emotionsorfears
Desiretoseemintelligent
Desiretoprotectfamily
Desiretobeacceptedorloved
Desiretobeanindividualorpartofagroup
Desiretofollowtradition
Desiretobewealthyorsavemoney
Desiretoproveloveofcountry
Desiretohaveajustorequitableworld

Evidence
Canpersuadetheaudiencebymakingthereader
seetheauthorasknowledgeableandtheargument
asmorelogicalorreliable.

Examples
:Statistics,expertopinions,research
findings

Note:Sometimesauthorsuseanecdotalevidence.
Thisiswhenyouuseapersonalexperienceor
isolatedexample,insteadofscientificproof.Itisoften
mucheasierforpeopletobelievesomeones
personalstorythancomplexdata.Butscientific
measuresarealmostalwaysmoreaccuratethan
personalperceptions.

Example
:Usingreferencestocutebabiesor
injustice
Attacks
Canpersuadetheaudiencebymakingtheaudience
feeltheydoNOTwanttobeonthewrongside.

Attackson:
Opposingviews
Thepeoplewhoholdopposingviews
Callingopposingviewsfoolish,dangerous,
uncaring,ordeceitful
Usinghumortomakefunofopposingviews
Note:thistechniquecanoffendoralienatethe
audienceifoverdone.

InclusiveandExclusiveLanguage
Canpersuadetheaudiencebyincludingthereader,
bycreatingasenseofsolidarity,orbycreatinga
senseofresponsibility.
Inclusivelanguagesuchaswe,our,us
Exclusivelanguagesuchasthem,their,
they

Example
:Peoplelikeyouandmedonotwanttosee
thishappen.

Example
:TownHall?
clownHall!
Ifweconsiderthe
mayorslatestcomments.
RhetoricalQuestions
Canpersuadetheaudiencebyencouragingthemto
thinkintheauthor'smindset.

RhetoricalQuestionsarequestionsthatdonot
requireananswerandareaskedforeffectonly.

Generalizations
Canpersuadetheaudiencebyappealingtoalready
heldprejudices,biases,stereotypes,racism,sexism,
etc.

Makesweepingstatementsaboutawholegroup
basedononlyoneortwomembersofthatgroup.

Thesequestionsengagetheaudienceand

encouragethemtoconsidertheissueandacceptthe Note:thistechniquecanoffendoralienatethe
authorsanswer,orimplythattheanswerisso
audienceifpreviousprejudicedoesnotalreadyexist.
obviousthatanyonewhodisagreesisfoolish.

Example
:Astoremanagermightseeoneteenager
Example
:Dowewantourchildrengrowingupina
shoplift,andwritealettertotheeditorclaimingall


worldwheretheyarethreatenedwithviolenceon
everystreetcorner?

teensstealandcantbetrusted.

SomePersuasiveTechniquesContinued

Connotation
Canpersuadetheaudiencebycarefullychoosing
wordstoappealtotheaudience'semotions.

Hyperbole
Canpersuadetheaudiencebyappealingtothe
audience'semotionsandmockingtheopposingside.

Theconnotationistheemotionalmeaning
associatedwiththeword.Persuasiveauthorsoften
choosewordscarefullyfortheirpurpose.

Hyperbole(highperbowlee)isextreme
exaggerationoftenusedforshockvalue.

Example
:Everyweekendthecityisoverrunby
Example
:Killandslaughterbothmeantocause
beggars.
deathbutslaughtercausestheaudienceto
imaginetheactwasparticularlyhorrific.Alsolabeling
peopleterroristvsfreedomfighter.

FormalLanguage
ColloquialLanguage
Canpersuadetheaudiencebymakingtheargument Canpersuadetheaudiencebyappearingfriendly
soundreasonable,rational,andbalanced.
andmakingaconnectionwiththeaudience.

Formallanguageisusingpropergrammar,noslang, Colloquiallanguageisinformal,everyday,
nocontractions,andlongerwords.Thiscanmake
conversationallanguage.
theauthorseemknowledgeablewhileremoving

emotionfromtheissue.
ExampleConversational
:

Informal:WenttoBarcelona.OMG,lotstotellyou!
ExampleWordChoice
:
Formal:WewenttoBarcelonafortheweekend.We

FormalInformal
havealotofexploitstodivulge.
CommenceStart
TerminateEnd
EndeavorTry

ExampleContractions
:
Formal:Shehasdecidedtoacceptthejob.
Informal:Shestakenthejob.
Repetition
Canpersuadetheaudiencebyensuringthe
messagestaysintheaudience'smind.

Repetition,sayingkeyphrasesmultipletimes,is
usedtoreinforceanargument.

Example
:Nowisthetimetomakerealthepromises
ofdemocracy.Nowisthetimetorisefromthedark
anddesolatevalleyofsegregationtothesunlitpath
ofracialjustice.Nowisthetimetoliftournationfrom
thequicksandsofracialinjusticetothesolidrockof
brotherhood.Nowisthetimetomakejusticea
realityforallGodschildren.

ImageryandFigurativeLanguage
Canpersuadetheaudiencebyappealingtothe
audience's5sensestoprovideatangible
connection.Alsothistechniquecanappealto
emotionandmaketheauthorappearwellspoken
andsophisticated.

Figurativelanguageisusingimageryanddevices
suchassimile,metaphor,andsymbolism.

Examples
:Australiaisafabricwovenofmany
colors

seerepetitionexample(imagery)