The mojologic blog

Insights on communication, influence, sales and leadership
Speech 25:  Nora Ephron (be the heroine of your life)

Speech 25: Nora Ephron (be the heroine of your life)

“What I’m saying is, don’t delude yourself that the powerful cultural values that wrecked the lives of so many of my classmates have vanished from the earth.”

Nora Ephron is the writer that brought us such classics as When Harry Met Sally, Julie and Julia and Silkwood.  So, we would expect sharp wit combined with humour and this speech delivers both.  Ephron goes further in her delivery a compelling feminist message and a warning to the graduating class of Wellesley College in 1996.

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Speech 24:  Malcolm X (The Ballot or the Bullet)

Speech 24: Malcolm X (The Ballot or the Bullet)

The Ballot or the Bullet speech was delivered by American civil rights activist Malcolm X on 3rd April 1964 at Cory Methodist Church in Cleveland, Ohio. "Once you change your philosophy, you change your thought pattern. Once you change your thought pattern, you change...

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Speech 23: Maya Angelou (On the Pulse of Morning)

Speech 23: Maya Angelou (On the Pulse of Morning)

Maya Angelou lived her life with the enduring belief that words are powerful.  
On January 20th, 1993, Maya Angelou recited her poem, On the Pulse of Morning, at the presidential inauguration of Bill Clinton.

As a poet, author and activist she regularly spoke out on the issues that mattered most to her.  In this post we celebrate the words she so masterfully assembled in the form of a poem.

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Speech 22:  Winston Churchill (On the beaches)

Speech 22: Winston Churchill (On the beaches)

One of the most famous and often studied speeches of the 20th century is Winston Churchill’s address to the House of Commons on 4 June 1940; commonly titled; “We shall fight on the beaches”.

Churchill was a student of the classics, an expert in rhetorical technique and, by this stage in his career, a seasoned politician.  This speech stands out as the manifestation of all his talents, delivered at precisely the right time to have maximum effect. 

What lessons in persuasion can we glean for this call to arms, delivered 80 years ago?

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Speech 21:  Roxane Gay (Confessions of a Bad Feminist)

Speech 21: Roxane Gay (Confessions of a Bad Feminist)

Roxane Gay Speech: ‘Confessions of a Bad Feminist’ TED Talk, June 2015
“I am failing as a woman, I am failing as a feminist.”
What Roxane Gay manages in her 2015 TED talk is quite masterful.  She wins over her opposition through the use of humour.  Self-deprecating humour, at that. Her persona (based on her book by the same title) of the ‘Bad Feminist’ is curious.  But more than that it signals that she is not perfect.  She tempers the implications of the position of ‘feminist’ with the admission that she herself, does not live up to whatever standards one might associate with feminism.  So, she makes what might, for some, seem to be a moralizing topic into one that is comedic.

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Speech 20: Franklin Roosevelt (a day that will live in infamy)

Speech 20: Franklin Roosevelt (a day that will live in infamy)

The Franklin D Roosevelt speech on 8th December 1941. “It will be recorded that the distance of Hawaii from Japan makes it obvious that the attack was deliberately planned many days or even weeks ago.  During the intervening time, the Japanese government has deliberately sought to deceive the United States by false statements and expressions of hope for continued peace.”

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Speech 17:  JK Rowling (fear of failure)

Speech 17: JK Rowling (fear of failure)

The Stoic Philosophy of JK Rowling JK Rowling delivered the commencement speech at Harvard University in 2008.  Her address is remarkable for the powerful message it contains. Through her dual themes of fear and imagination, Rowling echoes the philosophy of the stoics...

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