PROFESSIONAL SEMINARS, WORKSHOPS, LECTURES, AND CLASSES DEVELOPED AND PRESENTED BY ALAN PERLMAN
Alan Perlman, a former university professor shares his practical knowledge of language in seminars, workshops, and other presentations.
Business Communications: Theory and Practice (Wayne State University, Detroit MI; Oakland University, Rochester MI); 1979-80.
“Speechwriting in the Corporate Context,” Public Relations Update, Detroit MI, 1982.
Fundamentals of Public Speaking; Executive Communications: Speech and Writing (D’Etre University, Grosse Pointe MI); 1982-83.
Business Writing (Burroughs Corp. After-Hours Education Program); 1981-83.
“Jobs Without Experience, Experience Without Jobs: Breaking the Vicious Cycle,” Communications ’83 (careers conference).
“Sounds in Space — A Seminar in Effective Oral Presentation,” Detroit Chapter, International Association of Business Communicators (IABC), November, 1983.
“Preparing Humanities Students for Business Careers: What Liberal-Arts Faculty Can Do” (Keynote Address, to faculty); “Business Careers for Liberal-Arts Graduates: Improving Your Chances (speech to students), Liberal Arts Careers Seminar, Bowling Green State University, April, 1985.
“Writing for the Tongue,” IABC District 7 Conference, November, 1985.
“Employment Opportunities Outside the Classroom,” Michigan College English Association, Annual Meeting, October, 1985.
“Speeches That Sing, Speeches That Sell: Insights into the Craft,” National Association for Corporate Speaker Activities (NACSA), April, 1987.
“Tips on Effective Speechwriting,” IABC/Detroit, March, 1989.
“The Instant Expert: Mastering the Technical Speech,” NACSA, September, 1989.
“Words, Words, Words: Some Basic Truths About Symbols and Things,” Keynote Address, Toastmasters International, November, 1989.
“Writing for the Big Guns,” Detroit Producers Association, May, 1990.
“Power on the Podium: Coaching the Executive Speaker,” Metro Detroit Speechwriters’ Forum, June, 1990.
“Those Troublesome Ceremonial Speeches: the Toast, the Dedication, the Introduction, and the Acceptance,” Third, Fourth, Fifth Annual Speechwriters Conferences, November, 1990, 1991, 1992.
“How to Write a Speech,” Ragan Communication Seminars (various cities), April-June, 1991.
“The Speech as an Instrument of Policy,” Keynote Panel, Fourth Annual Speechwriters Conference, November, 1991.
“Soft Words for Hard Times: The Function of Euphemism in Corporate Communication,” Panel Remarks, Corporate Communicators’ Conference, May, 1992.
“The Year’s Ten Worst Speeches — And What We Can Learn from Them,” Fifth Annual Speechwriters Conference, November, 1992.
“Style: You’ve Either Got It or You Don’t — and How to Get It,” Chicago Speechwriters Forum, October, 1993.
“Speechwriters of the World, You’re Needed!”, Sixth Annual Speechwriters Conference, November, 1993.(with Jerry Tarver) “How to Write Speeches that Motivate,” Sixth Annual Speechwriters Conference, November, 1993.
“To P.C. or Not P.C.,” Public Relations Society of America, Greater O’Hare Chapter, February, 1994.
“In Pursuit of the Optimal Interview,” Chicago Speechwriters Forum, Nov. 1, 1994.
“The Power and the Gory: Words Do Mean Something — Don’t They?”, Chicago Speechwriters Forum, June, 1995.
“Some Components of ‘Cogent’ and ‘Memorable,'” Chicago Speechwriters Forum, January, 1996.
“On Libertarian Rhetoric,” Chicago Speechwriters Forum, October, 1996.
“Creativity on Cue,” Chicago Speechwriters Forum, July 7, 1998.
“Acquiring Quick Credibility,” Chicago Speechwriters Forum, October 6, 1998.
“Language Variation and Change: A Speechwriter’s Primer,” Chicago Speechwriters Forum, March 3, 1999.
“And Bingo Was Its Name-Oh: Buzzword Bingo and its Implications for Speechwriters,” Chicago Speechwriters Forum, August 3, 1999.
“Writing Great Speeches,” Toastmasters International Conference, Chicago, IL, August 19, 1999.
“The Visible Ghost: Speechwriting in the Corporate Context,” Department of Communication Studies, West Chester University, West Chester, PA, October, 25, 1999.
“Reflect Your Speaker’s Personality in Your Speeches,” Ragan Communications Speechwriting Conference, Washington, DC, Feb. 9, 2000.
“Writing Great Speeches,” Diplomatic Toastmasters #4378, District 30, 10th Anniversary Celebration, Evanston, IL, March 19, 2001.
“World English: How to Communicate with an International Audience,” International Association of Business Communicators, International Conference, Chicago, IL, June 11, 2002.
“The Language of Music and the Music of Language,” Chicago Speechwriters Forum, September 9, 2003.
“When a Lawyer Needs a Linguist,” Association of Forensic Document Examiners, Milwaukee, WI, Nov. 8, 2009.
- How the virus of political correctness spreads: none dare call it “looting” - When I use a word,’ Humpty Dumpty said in rather a scornful tone, ‘it means just what I choose it to mean — neither more nor less.’ ’The question is,’ said Alice, ‘whether you can make words mean so many different things.’ ’The question is,’ said Humpty Dumpty, ‘which is to be master —... Read more »
- From etiquette to coercion: language police threaten harsh punishments - Not merely the validity of experience, but the very existence of external reality was tacitly denied by their philosophy. The heresy of heresies was common sense. Who controls the past controls the future. Who controls the present controls the past. George Orwell It has finally happened. The language police have gone from etiquette... Read more »
- “The Biden Administration…”– evading responsibility through impersonal language. - Political language is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind. ― George Orwell Governments and organizations of every kind evade personal responsibility by making the organization the subject of an active sentence, as if it moved of its own will. Granted, it’s sometimes a... Read more »
- On the futility of International Pronoun Day - Referring to people by the pronouns they determine for themselves is basic to human dignity. Being referred to by the wrong pronouns particularly affects transgender and gender nonconforming people. Together, we can transform society to celebrate people’s multiple, intersecting identities. From the home page of International Pronoun Day Woke/left tampering with and manipulation of language provides... Read more »
- Not “chain of command” – but “pyramid of obedience” - “A wise man changes his mind, but a fool never.” Arabic proverb “Unadvised hasty judgment is a token apparent of a very slender wit.” Anne Askew, 1520-46 America’s chaotic and humiliating exit from Afghanistan did not just happen. Human decisions instigated and implemented it. But the key question, if we are ever to hold... Read more »
- “War” or “defense”? Propaganda and the value of repetition - “The truth is what most people believe. And they believe that which is repeated most often.” Paul Josef Goebbels The quote is from the man who served as Hitler’s Propaganda Minister and who (BTW, he was a linguist like me, with a doctorate in philology) would today feel quite at home in a PR... Read more »
- Government creates a new “domestic terrorist threat.” And where are the linguists? - “When I use a word,” Humpty Dumpty said in rather a scornful tone, “it means just what I choose it to mean—neither more nor less.” “The question is,” said Alice, “whether you can make words mean so many different things.” – Lewis Carroll, Through the Looking Glass The government has created a new “domestic terrorist threat”... Read more »
- “The goals migrated:” malicious obfuscation in political speech - “Pentagon spokesman John Kirby, a retired rear admiral, recently said that during the long U.S. undertaking in Afghanistan ‘the goals did migrate over time.’ Did the goals themselves have agency – minds of their own?” George Will When I listen to or read the speech of the people who represent the government and the military-industrial... Read more »
- Calling for an end to pronomania - Pronomania [pro-no-MAY-nee-ah], n. an obsession with multiplying third-person personal pronouns to indicate a large number of genders, subjectively defined, resulting in the proliferation of personal pronouns, the announcement of “my” pronouns, and the user’s enhanced self-image and feeling of virtuous sensitivity to gender. Some people think they know about pronouns. They know nothing. They think... Read more »
- “Critical Race Theory,” Part II: Where are the linguists? - “Linguistics is virtually invisible to most people…” — Roger Shuy, Language Crimes, 1996 “Critical Race Theory” is not going away. Although the slogan is heard almost everywhere in academia and education, almost no one inquires into what it actually means in practice. It means a lot of different things, which is a good thing for... Read more »