The persuasive speech is one of the most common assignments given to debate clubs, those in public-speaking courses and forensics teams. Though many students may groan at the thought, a persuasive speech is actually quite a useful activity for anybody who may someday go into politics, law, sales or psychology; its principles will come in handy for any profession that involves convincing people of anything.
Lying as a Necessary Part of Good Relationships
Two aspects of a very good persuasive speech topic is that many people in your audience can relate to it, and that it's at least a little bit controversial -- if not downright wildly unpopular. In that spirit, (almost) everyone knows what it's like to lie or be lied to within a relationship, and it is almost always recognized as a very bad thing. Include the topics of white lies to protect a person's feelings, things one's partner might as well not know and anecdotal evidence to support your argument in favor of lying.
Women Cheat More Than Men (or the Reverse)
If opinions aren't your thing, try persuading your audience of a fact that may or may not be provable. The question of who cheats more in relationships is one for the ages and can be supported by statistics, anecdotal evidence and even unofficial opinion polls that you conduct prior to writing your speech. For a topic like this one, be sure that you establish a position on the matter early on and stick to it throughout the speech. However, don't be afraid to change your opinion based on evidence before you actually take it to the stage.
Marriage Between Same-Sex People Should (or Should Not) Be Legal
A political hot-button issue is the classic persuasive speech topic. The biggest relationship-related issue in politics (at the time of this writing) is whether or not same-sex marriage ought to be recognized under the law. Like the cheating topic, you must support your position on same-sex marriage with statistics, anecdotal evidence and unofficial polls. Consider interviewing (and subsequently quoting) someone whose life has been drastically (positively or negatively) affected by the lawfulness or otherwise of same-sex marriage.
All Is Fair in Love and War
If you prefer to keep your speech on the timeless side, argue for or against one of those common cliches that people are always using to get themselves out of trouble. Though your position on whether all is indeed fair in love and war can be supported by anecdotal evidence and polls, for this topic you will need to dig deeper into your metaphorical and philosophical pockets to persuade your audience of your position. Muster up all the passion you've got and make your audience believe it, no matter how they felt when they walked into the auditorium.
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