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  • 9th of January, 2007

  • Joshua Bell, one of the greatest violinist in the world,

  • played to a packed audience

  • at Boston's stately Symphony Hall of 1,000 people

  • where most seats went for more than $100.

  • He was used to full, sell-out shows.

  • He was at the peak of his abilities and fame.

  • Three days later,

  • Joshua Bell played to an audience of

  • nobody!

  • Well, maybe six people paused for a moment,

  • and one child stopped for a while looking,

  • as if he understood that something special was happening.

  • Joshua said of the experience,

  • "It was a strange feeling that people were actually ignoring me."

  • Joshua Bell was playing violin in a subway station.

  • "At a music hall, I'll get upset if someone coughs

  • or if someone's cell phone goes off,

  • but here my expectations quickly diminished.

  • I was oddly grateful when somebody threw in a dollar."

  • What changed?

  • Same music,

  • on the same violin,

  • played with the same passion

  • and by the same man.

  • Why did people listen and then not listen?

  • Aristotle would be able to explain.

  • What does it take to persuade people?

  • 2,300 years ago,

  • Aristotle wrote the single most important work on persuasion,

  • Rhetoric,

  • the 3 means of persuasion:

  • logos,

  • ethos,

  • and pathos.

  • Logos is that the idea makes sense from the audience's point of view.

  • This is usually different from the speaker's point of view,

  • so work needs to be done

  • to make the idea relevant to the world view,

  • the pains and the challenges of the listeners.

  • A good argument is like good music.

  • Good music follows some rules of composition;

  • good arguments follow some rules of logic.

  • It makes sense to the audience.

  • Ethos is reputation, what are you known for;

  • credibility, do you look and act professional;

  • trustworthy, are your motives clear,

  • do you show the listener that you care about them as much as yourself?

  • Authority is confidence plus a concise message,

  • a clear, strong voice.

  • Pathos is the emotional connection.

  • Stories are an effective human tool for creating an emotional connection.

  • There are moments where an audience is not ready

  • to hear the message.

  • A speaker must create the right emotional environment for their message.

  • What changed?

  • Why did people travel for miles to hear him play one night,

  • and not even pause for moment to listen the next morning?

  • The answer is that ethos and pathos were missing.

  • Ethos

  • The fact that the great concert hall hosts Joshua's concert

  • transfers its trust to Joshua.

  • We trust the institution, we now trust Joshua.

  • The subway does not have our trust for musical talent,

  • we do not expect to find great art,

  • great music,

  • or great ideas,

  • so it confers no trust to Joshua.

  • Pathos

  • The concert hall is designed for an emotional bond

  • between an audience and an artist,

  • a subway platform is not.

  • The hustle and movement and stress is just not conducive

  • to the emotional connection needed between performer and listener.

  • Logos,

  • ethos,

  • pathos,

  • the idea is nothing without the rest.

  • This is what Joshua Bell learned

  • on that cold, January day in 2007.

  • If you have a great idea,

  • how do you build credibility and emotional connection?

9th of January, 2007

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B1 TED-Ed joshua ethos emotional bell persuasion

【TED-Ed】What Aristotle and Joshua Bell can teach us about persuasion - Conor Neill

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    VoiceTube posted on 2013/03/20
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