- Paperback: 408 pages
- Publisher: Penguin Random House USA Ex; Revised, Updated ed. edition (6 Aug. 2013)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0385347758
- ISBN-13: 978-0385347754
- Product Dimensions: 15.5 x 2.3 x 23.4 cm
- Average Customer Review: 14 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 340,509 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Thank You for Arguing: What Aristotle, Lincoln, and Homer Simpson Can Teach Us about the Art of Persuasion Paperback – 6 Aug 2013
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About the Author
JAY HEINRICHS spent 25 years as a journalist and publishing executive before becoming a fulltime advocate for the lost art of rhetoric. Since then he's taught persuasion to Fortune 500 companies, Ivy League universities, NASA, and the Pentagon. He is also the author of Word Hero: A Fiendishly Clever Guide to Crafting the Lines that Get Laughs, Go Viral, and Live Forever.
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A very amusing read, very useful if you want tips and tricks to get your voice heard in a world of marketing and persuasion.
Easily read and humorous.
Heinrichs puts his arguement across well and develops his ideas logically throughout the book. Like any good writer of something of reference the conclusions at the end of each chapter allow a certain ammount of cheating - should you wish only to cover the key points. This also serves to aid in referring back to find key sections. His style is conversational but manages to avoid sounding partronising - unlike some books of its kind.
There are two thoroughly refreshing aspects to this book that made the reading experience all the more enjoyable. The first was the juxtaposition of the classic (and well researched) arguments with some very contemporary references. Some of the contrasts are mentioned in the title and it really does mix them up in this way. This is particularly effective when the arguement itself becomes complex and somewhat abstract. It may lead to the book dating somewhat in years to come, but does really help illuminate the points most effectively.
The other aspect I enjoyed was his almost obsessive notation and the derivation of the words, in particular. This will result in my ensuring this book is put to good use and not left to gather dust.
If you are looking for something to illustrate the power of persuasion then this book definately achieves the remit. It is an engrossing, unconventionally illustrated, and ultimately intersting read.
This book offers you a choice: allowing you to control the argument or allowing the argument to control you. Jay has made esoteric seeming rhetoric into everyday practicality. Illustrating clearly how we all use elements of rhetoric in our daily lives, he goes on to demonstrate how to improve and structure it. Arguments, in the true rhetorical sense, become more productive, pleasurable and useful as a result.
I wish I'd had this book when I was a teenager; I would love to get my brothers kids to read it-what an advantage they would have, especially in building a career-never mind dodging the fallacious nonsense argued in the media and in politics.
Flowing easily from offense, defence, advanced defence-finally culminating in advanced agreement; Jay structures his discussion using ethos, pathos and logos succinctly, weaving tips, anecdotes and everyday examples into every page.
The Appendices are well thought out, the first being a total gem.
Entitled The Tools, here they are:
Goals-Set the tense:
* Personal Goal: What do you want from your audience
* Audience Goals: Mood, Mind and Willingness to Act.
* The past is forensic-guilt and innocence, such as a court case.
* The present values-demonstrative-Praise and Blame.
* The future-the rhetoric of politics and good argument, what is best for the audience.
Ethos-Argument by character
* Decorum-Ability to fit in with the audience's expectations of a trustworthy leader.
* Practical Wisdom
* Liar Detector
* Virtue Yardstick
* Volume control
* Unannounced emotion
* Passive voice
* Persuasive Emotions
* Figures of Speech
* Proof Spotter
* Commonplace Label
* Logical Fallacies
* Bad Proof
* Bad Conclusion
* Disconnect between proof and conclusion
* Rhetorical Fouls
Kairos-Timing or seizing the occasion
* Persuadable Moment
The Further reading gives you a decent selection of books-I agree with his recommendation on Lanham's Handbook of Rhetorical Terms. Use it in conjunction with this text though as Lanham is not giving you daily life usage, rather he's offering his discussion on the terms themselves in an A-Z order.
The initiated may be a little put off by the terminology; however Jay points out the names are not important, simply grasp the concepts-I believe everyone reading this will do that with ease both from recognition and Jay's instruction.
This book has served me as a solid course in debating skills; something I believe we all could use to great advantage thus allowing us to avoid being persuaded by poor argument, poor reasoning ,bad proof and giving us the ability to make choices that are fully informed-something that is frequently unavailable on a daily basis.
If you have never read any book on persuasion, argument or similar, let this be your first-you won't be disappointed-in fact I think you may even be back to thank me.
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