Tag Archives: Mary Beard

Thoughts on Oratory from Mary Beard

This post by British classicist (and JLF speaker) Mary Beard reflects on contemporary oratory via the movie, “The King’s Speech”. What makes a speech “great”? Why do we have no woman recognized as great orators? (A male category?) How do we distinguish good oratory from demagoguery? Can a politician reading the words of another be a great orator, or is that politician just an actor? It’s a very thoughtful piece that applies to lawyers as well as politicians. It does not address the profound mistrust or suspicion that any orator encounters today, however, which I consider the most difficult issue of all.