The Rhetorical Canons of Speechwriting
In this chapter, we present three tasks from the rhetorical canon that all speechwriting must engage in order to compose a coherent and persuasive speech. The first, finding content and arguments, involves a structured method of researching, the topical system. The second task, organizing the speech, involves reflection on the function of the parts. Our focus is on the speech consisting of four parts: introduction, narrative, argument, and epilogue. Presenting the third task, creating persuasive language and style, we argue that style is vital to the construction and meaning. We outline the basic principles of rhetorical style and advice speechwriters to use rhetorical figures to structure the argument, enhance communion with the audience, and make the speech memorable.