Origins of Public Speaking
By: Peter A. DeCaro, Ph.D.
University of Alaska, Fairbanks, AK
After reading this chapter, you should be able to:
- Identify the historical events that led up to democracy and recognize persuasion and public speaking as art forms in Athens, Greece.
- Describe the nature of public speaking in Athens during the 5th century B.C. and the role it played in a democratic society.
- Apply Plato’s approach to dialectics and logic.
- Explain Aristotle’s descriptions of rhetoric and public speaking.
- Describe the Roman Republic’s adoption of rhetoric to public speaking.
- Elucidate Cicero’s influence on the Roman Republic and public speaking.
- Describe the relevance of Quintillion’s influence on the Roman Empire, rhetoric, and public speaking.
- Recognize the impact that St. Augustine, Christianity, and the Middle Ages had on rhetoric and public speaking.
- Clarify the roles that the Renaissance, Rationalism, and the Humanists had on the rebirth of rhetoric and public speaking.
- Explain the role that Classical rhetoric and the advent of psychology in the 18th and 19th centuries, known as the Modern Period, had on public speaking.
- Describe the influence of the Elocutionary Movement on public speaking.
- Describe the restoration of public speaking in the United States.
- Ancient Greece
- The Rise of Democracy
- The Nature of Rhetoric
- Dialectics and Logic
- The Rhetorical Approach
- The Roman Republic’s Adoption of Rhetoric
- Cicero’s Influence
- Quintillion’s Influence
- The Middle Ages
- St. Augustine
- The Renaissance
- The Humanists
- The Rationalists
- The Modern Period
- The Epistemological Tradition
- The Belles Lettres Movement
- The Elocutionary Movement
- Review Questions and Activities