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Fighting Words (Hardback)

Persuasive Strategies for War and Politics

Military > Reference

Imprint: Savas Beatie
Pages: 312
Illustrations: 16-pg b/w photo section
ISBN: 9781932714784
Published: 6th February 2010



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In Fighting Words, award-winning author Richard F. Miller (In Words and Deeds) looks to some of history's most successful battle speechmakers to answer the age-old question of how did it work? How did Pope Urban II's speech convince tens of thousands of Europeans to wage the First Crusade, a dangerous, and for many, a one-way journey to Jerusalem? How did George Patton's speech transform the green kids of the Third Army into the terror of the Third Reich? How did the words of General David Petraeus resurrect a losing effort in Iraq and in the process, retrain his soldiers for a new kind of war? Miller argues that human persuasion is seamless and that the persuasive strategies by which men (and increasingly women) are recruited, trained, and exhorted for war can be applied to politics and business. For those who manage, motivating, instructing, and preparing your people to perform their jobs is, for the competent manager, Job One. For those who recognize that in this partisan age, politics is just war by other means, Fighting Words applies the insights of battle speeches to politics. Miller concludes his study by analyzing three of President Obama's most successful and controversial speeches based on the lessons learned from the great military motivators of history. What did the president do right? What did he do wrong? Miller doesn't speculate, rather he analyzes real historical examples and extracts their lessons. As Miller aptly demonstrates, persuasive strategies based on love, hate, duty, patriotism, comradeship, fear, and shame are as widely used today as they were in antiquity.About the AuthorHistorian and journalist Richard F. Miller has served four stints as an embedded journalist, most recently, with the 101st Airborne at various posts in eastern Afghanistan (2008).

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