To my magnificent readers. I welcome you. Here you will find a list of excellent famous persuasive speeches used to sway the audience’s opinion and manipulate their emotions.
Included are famous propaganda speeches involving the best persuasive speech techniques made by master strategists. Some of them you will know, some you won’t. There are a lot of videos but if you have time, watch them all and try to uncover the core elements that made these speeches so powerful.
Who can you expect?
- Ronald Reagan
- Winston Churchill
- John F. Kennedy
- Adolf Hitler
- Joseph Goebbels
- Benito Mussolini
- Saddam Hussein
- + 2 unannounced bonuses
Don’t fall victim to the Halo effect and disregard some of the people in this list, just because you don’t like them.
Adhere to what Ralph Waldo Emerson said:
‘In my walks, every man I meet is my superior in some way, and in that I learn from him.’
I am in the course of writing a post about persuasive speech techniques. I actually wanted to merge it with this video list, but it got too long and hence I split it up. You can expect the post about the tactics for manipulating your adience soon.
Let’s take a look at the gathered gems, here is the
List of Famous Persuasive Speeches
Number 10) Ronald Reagan in Berlin
Pretty meagre talk lacking any kind of enthusiasm but it makes up with great content. One of the most famous phrases known by virtually everyone despite most of them not having seen the actual speech. Here it is:
Highlight: Mr. Gorbatschow, tear down this wall!
Another good speech of him was the following about never backing down:
Number 9) Winston Churchill during the second world war
This is the first war speech in my list and others are to follow. I dislike the modulation of his voice, but he is a charming drunkard full of calm power and wit. He manages to persuade the masses and evoke vigor in their hearts.
Highlights: You ask, what is our policy? I can say: It is to wage war, by sea, land and air, with all our might and with all the strength that God can give us; to wage war against a monstrous tyranny.
Number 8) John F. Kennedy – State of the Nation
Highlights: Fellow Americans: Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country?
Number 7) Good old Charlie Manson
Listening to our most famous Hipster sends a chill down your spine. This guy is utterly insane but a master manipulator who managed to draw people into his spell and make the innocent commit atrocious crimes. Sooner or later I am definitely going to write a post about him, digging deep into the psyche and persuasion talent of this mad man.
Highlights: The mind is endless. You put me in a dark solitary cell and to you that’s the end. To me it’s the beginning. It’s a universe in there, it’s a world in there… I am free!
Number 6) Benito Mussolini’s Propaganda Speech
Il Duce, an advocate of Machiavelli and probably one of the best manipulators and populists to ever walk the earth. A powerful communicator who had an excellent body language. Mussolini is known for his insane gaze which could freeze brave men dead in their tracks.
Highlights: This is your day, your great day. with your courage, with your sacrifice, with your faith you have given a mighty impulse to history.
Number 5) Saddam Hussein’s Trial
Another great power speech. Saddam had no support, nothing to work with; he was not even thrown a bone. They continuously cut him off and refused his request to at least bring a little piece of paper with his notes to the trial. Despite that he delivered a perfect speech, managing to artfully arouse emotions. In the end, this didn’t save his neck and he was murdered like a common criminal.
Highlights: Too many, example: [addressing the judge] Don’t cut me off. I am not defending myself. I am defending you.
Number 4) Germany’s war declaration against Poland
Disregard any prejudice you might have and watch this from start to finish. Everything about this speech was delivered par excellence. His voice, modulation, body language as well as the content. Everything. Reframing, playing the victim, creating an enemy, pretending honesty and the wish for peace, etc, etc…
*Seit 5:45h wird jetzt zurück geschossen. Und von jetzt an wird Bombe mit Bombe vergolten.Wer mit Gift kämpft, wird mit Giftgas bekämpft.* (at 19:22)
Since 5:45 we are shooting back, and from now on we are going to repay bomb with bomb. Whoever fights with poison will be combated with poisonous gas.
Number 3) Martin Luther King, you know which one
Unbelievable, watch, enjoy, pay special attention to his sentence structure and rhetorical devices.
Highlights: I have a dream, that one day…
And the winner is:
Joseph Goebbels’ Famous Propaganda & Persuasive Speeches
The propaganda mastermind behind Hitler, Germany’s minister of propaganda and creator of the holocaust. Ironically he applied the techniques of, the Austrian jew and nephew of Sigmund Freund, Edward Bernays in order to spark so much hate among the population that they called for the Jewish heads.
Goebbels was a physically weak person with apparently no strong presence at all. Until he opened his mouth. The first video is about the Jewish problem and the second video is his most famous speech given during the late phase of the second world war when times were looking dull for the German citizens.
Here is what a reader said about the German videos:
It’s crazy seeing the Nazi speeches with translation. All your life you hear them and assume it’s some viciously angry stuff that people would be insane to follow but when you see the words it’s not much different than modern political discourse/power talk with just some words substituted.
This video looks broken but you can infact watch it.
This concludes the list of the best famous persuasive speeches and I follow it up with three bonus videos on life, success & motivation.
Bonus Motivational Videos
Steve Jobs’ amazing Stanford Speech
Highlights: I slept on the floor in friends’ rooms, I returned Coke bottles for the 5¢ deposits to buy food with, and I would walk the 7 miles across town every Sunday night to get one good meal a week at the Hare Krishna temple. I loved it.
When you are out there, partying horsing around, someone out there at the same time is working hard. Someone is getting smarter and someone is winning; Just remember that!
You sleep 6 hours. “Now wait a minute, I sleep 8 hours or 9 hours.” Well, then sleep faster I would recommend.
Thank you for reading my post about the most famous persuasive speeches and I hope that you could learn from these masters of manipulation. If you have a keen interest in propaganda, I can recommend this vimeo video.
Of course another resource for learning more about persuasion and propaganda is the 48 Laws of Power.