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HIS WORK aims to show how to breathe correctly,
produce voice properly, put the meaning into words by aid of inflection, emphasis, and the tones of the voice; how to improve the memory, acquire fluency of speech, control an audience, construct speeches, and in every way become competent to think on one's feet and express thought vocally in an entertaining, convincing, and moving manner. It is intended as a text-book to aid in making students proficient in the art of vocal ext pression. It aims to cover the field exhaustively, dealing in a comprehensive manner with all subjects pertaining to the construction and the delivery of speeches.
There are so many books treating of the subject of oratory that there would appear scant room for another, but as they all treat mainly of the way to speak, and only give general instructions as to how to speak, there is, in the author's opinion, a wide field for a book that explicitly shows not only what means a person should employ in order to become a ready and effective speaker but also gives specific instructions as to the employment of those means.
This book is intended to take the place of the living teacher wherever the services of a thoroughly competent
one cannot be secured, or where the student desires to work in the privacy of his own room, and the aim of the author is to make it more practical and of greater value than any of the so-called “ Personal Correspondence Courses now being exploited, and for which exorbitant fees are charged. It may, however, be used to equal advantage by the teacher in the class room as a textbook.
No vague instructions such as, “ speak in a clear ringing voice, " "use expressive language," " mean what you say,” etc., will be given; but in their place will be found directions as to how to gain a good voice, how to acquire the power of explaining by the tones of the voice the meaning of the spoken words, how to secure a delivery that will carry conviction to the listener, and how to construct speeches. In short, this book aims not only to tell the essentials of oratory but also to show the way in which they may be acquired. It contains the complete course in oratorical training as given in the Lawrence School of New York. Finally, the book is presented as a vade mecum that will pilot the would-be orator to success.
EDWIN G. LAWRENCE.
ITAL are the questions now confronting man the
world over; but particularly are those questions important to Americans, because the United States of America is looked upon as the pioneer country of the world in all matters pertaining to man's emancipation from the injustice of ages, and that young country is expected to blaze a trail through the unsolved realm of progress along which the older nations may travel till they reach the plain of universal justice and liberty.
Among the problems now confronting the people are those of finance, labor, religion, conservation of natural resources, and civic justice. The questions are here, but where are the orators capable of making those questions clear to the masses ? Where are the men to solve those problems? Some there are who are nobly responding to the demands of the times, but they are too few successfully to grapple with the task.
It is claimed that this is the age of the printing-press and that the necessity for orators no longer exists. This is surely not a valid claim. The newspaper is doing its work, and in many cases is doing it nobly, but it can never take the place of the human voice. An article may be printed in a paper having a circulation running into the hundreds of thousands, and yet the article will be read by only a small percentage of those into whose hands the paper falls; and out of this percentage a still smaller percentage will be influenced by the printed word. The speaker, on the other hand, addresses an audience of only a few thousand, but of that number, if the speaker is deserving of the name, he will influence a majority. Suppose he convinces and persuades only one hundred, the one hundred are so thoroughly brought into accord with the speaker that they go out into the world and, by word of mouth, bring ten times their number to the same way of thinking. By this means all great movements have flourished. John the Baptist, with the spoken word, prepared the way and made straight the path; Jesus of Nazareth taught by spoken symbols only; Paul of Tarsus carried Christianity into Greece and Rome by means of speech; Peter the Hermit enthused the Crusaders by his spoken utterances; Martin Luther brought about a reformation by his speech before the Diet of Worms; Patrick Henry aroused his countrymen by his eloquence; Daniel O'Connell accomplished Catholic emancipation in Great Britain by means of presenting the cause of religious liberty to friend and foe in the shape of the spoken word; Daniel Webster expounded the Constitution orally; William Lloyd Garrison, Wendell Phillips and Abraham Lincoln pleaded for the enslaved negro by word of mouth; and La Follette, Bryan, and Roosevelt are expressing the thoughts of the people of today by means of man's greatest attribute — speech.