What is even more, the speaker, namely his/her overall appearance and gesticulation, is also a factor in this equation. These three factors are perhaps the most important in effective public speaking.
The purpose of this essay is for me to analyze a speech that I have heard, in terms of the above three factors, more specifically with regard to the guidelines of the Out-of Class Delivery Form that I was given. I have chosen the speech of Rabbi Besser to analyze in this regard. Rabbi Besser is the Rabbi at my synagogue, and he was speaking at our weekly Saturday evening Havdulah.
Starting from his physical appearance, Rabbi Besser looked very presentable in his dark suit and nicely polished shoes. The importance of personal dressing and grooming in public speaking is asserted by most writers of the topic. Rozakis states that not only the dressing of the speaker but his cleanliness is also very important (310 & 312). Condrill and Bough do not mention personal cleanliness separately, however, they do stress that the speaker should dress appropriately for the occasion (74). In this regard, Rabbi Besser was very well prepared for the speech, not only was he dressed well to suit the occasion, as I mentioned earlier, but he maintained good personal cleanliness that was quite apparent.
Once Rabbi Besser started his speech, he started walking around the podium. I feel, that this took away from his speech as he moved around too much, causing the audience to be distracted by his movements. Though moving around can be a good method for holding the audience’s attention, however, I felt that the Rabbi used it excessively, causing distraction.
Moreover, the use of hand gestures by the Rabbi was excessive too. Gesticulation is a good tool in making a point in a speech; it sometimes helps elaborate what the speaker is trying to say. Additionally, gesticulation can also help the speaker in remembering certain key points of the speech. Rozakis’ “The