1. What was the specific purpose of Pinker’s speech?
The purpose of Pinker’s speech was to persuade the audience that violence has actually been on a declining trend were allegedly in contemporary times, people have been living in the most peaceful time since mankind existed .
2. What was the strategic order Pinker used in presenting his main points?
Pinker used historical data through a strategic order that categorized his evidences and arguments to support his main points through the millennium scale, the century scale, the decade scale, and the year scale .
3. What was Pinker’s delivery method?
Pinker used descriptive lecture-presentation method to persuade the audience on this assertion that there is an evident decline in violence exhibited since the beginning of time.
Refer to the PowerPoint Appendix, beginning on page 285. Discuss whether Pinker effectively or ineffectively followed each of the formatting techniques:
4. Color: Pinker effectively used different colors in his PowerPoint Presentation to highlight and differentiated main points from sub-topics through diversity of colors in texts and in selected photos which still conforms to the expected level of professionalism.
5. Text: The texts used were also changed according to main points and sub-points; as well as in highlighting needed portions through effectively summarizing strategic words needed.
6. Fonts: The fonts which were used abided with the standards of presentation through conformity to font sizes and colors; by changing these according to main points and sub-points and in highlighting words and phrases through the italics or bold interfaces.
7. Images: The images were carefully selected to assist Pinker in highlighting points and in soliciting audience appeal through vivid representations of the points being discussed.
8. Space: There were enough space in the presentation that effectively balanced the use of texts and photos, as needed.
9. Animation: Due to the topic which was formal and highly professional, no animation was used in the presentation which was just appropriate and effective.
10. The purpose of Pinker’s speech was to persuade. Which major kind of persuasive speech organization did he use to accomplish this?
The kind of persuasive speech organization that Pinker used was the logical or topic pattern where he used historical data to assert the declining trend of violence which apparently has been evidently exhibited through time
What are three specific pieces of evidence Pinker used in an attempt to persuade the audience to believe his argument?
11. One piece of evidence that Pinker used in attempting to persuade the audience to believe the decline in violence is through statistical figures exhibited through graphical illustrations
12. Another piece of evidence to support Pinker’s assertion was through citing authoritative sources which validates his points such as the Bible, and works of famous people such as Thomas Hobbes, James Payne, and other professionals in their respective fields of endeavor.
13. Finally, another piece of evidence to support Pinker’s arguments is through historical facts which traced the number of deaths of men from 10,000 years ago until contemporary times.
14. Which type of appeal, ethos (p. 353) or pathos (p. 370) did Pinker use in his persuasion?
Pinker used mostly ethos (credibility) as the type of appeal to persuade the audience on his contention for alleged decline in violence through exuding authority in the topic and through effective choice of supporting facts that validated his assertions.
15. Cite one specific example of that type of appeal from the speech.
Pinker introduced the use of validating support through this statement, which confirms the use of ethos: “Let me take you on a journey of several powers of 10 -- from the millennium scale to the year scale -- to try to persuade you of this” .
16. Explain how the example you cited meets the characteristics of that appeal type.
The example affirmed that through asserting that he has extensive and comprehensive knowledge on the topic, with the appropriate support, he has the knowledge and credibility on the subject matter and his information is reliable to the point that this appeal was confirmed.
17. Chapter 11 urges using concrete words over abstract words (p. 228). Did Pinker follow that advice? Explain, supporting your explanation with three examples from the speech.
Pinker definitely followed the advice to use concrete words over abstract words through the following examples for the reason that concrete words through enabling the audience to visualize the things noted through the physical senses were effectively used.
- When explaining a verse taken from the Bible, Pinker explained and expounded on the statement by affirming that: “In other words, kill the men; kill the children; if you see any virgins, then you keep them alive so that you can rape them” .
- “The kind of infraction today that would give you a fine, in those days would result in your tongue being cut out, your ears being cut-off, you being blinded, a hand being chopped off” .
- “Perhaps the most vivid example was the practice of cat burning, in which a cat was hoisted on a stage and lowered in a sling into a fire, and the spectators shrieked in laughter as the cat, howling in pain, was burned to death” .
Pinker, S. (2007, September). Steven Pinker: The surprising decline in violence. Retrieved from YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ramBFRt1Uzk