Today I thought I’d share three more rhetorical devices that you can use in writing or in presentations.
One of the most well-known rhetorical devices is the rhetorical question. This is a question that we ask without expecting an answer. We ask it for effect. Your audience knows the answer to the question. In presentations, asking a negative question is an effective way to get your audience to think about something.
- Shouldn’t we be learning from our mistakes?
- Don’t we all know that this is true?
- Isn’t this what we need to do know?
Contrasts and Opposites
Another fairly simple technique. It’s most effective when you make your main point second.
- If we don’t seize the opportunity, someone else will.
- Some people are saying we can’t afford to pay for staff training. I say we can’t afford not to.
- Five years ago this company was going nowhere; today we’re number one in the industry.
By reversing the word order in a statement, you can add a sense of formality.
- We’ve done better in Central Europe than anywhere.
- Nowhere have we done better than in Central Europe.