Great course on rhetoric

I recently came across a great course on rhetoric. Over the summer I had been doing some reading around Greek philosophy. Repeatedly I came up against how importantly they viewed the subject of rhetoric.

It made me conscious that in all of my education, I had never studied rhetoric. While I have had a lot of experience in delivering rhetoric, and have a new book coming out about speaking with impact, I have never had any formal education on this topic.

A quick search revealed this amazing free course – Rhetoric: The Art of Persuasive Writing and Public Speaking run by Harvard University. While it was good to have a refresher on some of the theory behind rhetoric, what really made this course stand out for me were the lectures given by Prof James Engell.

Over the course of this module, he took a number of classic US political speeches and offered a fascinating analysis of them against the theory of rhetoric. I’d love to see more focus in schools and universities on rhetoric – it such a useful skill for life!

I highly recommend this course to anyone with even a passing interest in the importance of writing and public speaking persuasively. And what is more remarkable is that this amazing course is free. Why not check it out?

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