The movie Josie and the Pussycats
Attention Getter: Has anyone here seen the movie Josie and the Pussycats from 2001? It’s okay if you haven’t, I don’t blame you. Relate to Audience: Behind all the superb acting and catchy music, however, lies a highly controversial and interesting topic. That would be subliminal messaging, and that’s what I’ll be talking to you about today.
Thesis: Subliminal messaging has been a controversial method of manipulation for years. Preview: I will talk about the different forms of subliminal messages, I’ll tell you about how influential they can be, and I will describe some of the most controversial examples throughout history.
Transition: So let’s start by exploring the types of subliminal messages. Body I. MP1: Subliminal messages can be either audio or visual. According to Webster’s dictionary, the word “subliminal” is defined as “existing or functioning below the threshold of consciousness”. Basically, this means that your body can sense a subliminal message but it won’t be transferred into consciousness; it’s sensation without perception. Audio subliminal messages can be achieved by hiding the message at a volume too low to pick up. Other sounds are played above these messages to mask their identity.
Another more famous form of audio subliminal messaging is known as “backmasking”. It often involves music that, when played backward, sends a different message than when played forward. This form of subliminal message was responsible for a wave of hysteria beginning in the 1970s as the media claimed that numerous songs hid satanic messages behind their lyrics. On the other hand, there are visual subliminal messages. These can take a couple different forms as well. An image (generally a word) can be quickly flashed and taken away before the subject can consciously perceive what it says.
The image is often flashed repeatedly at this rapid pace through something like a commercial. Subliminal images can also be present as a part of other images. An example of this would be a word clearly spelled out in the clouds on an advertisement or details of a picture that suggest something else. Transition: Now that you know the basics of subliminal messaging, let’s explore how they’re used. II. MP2: MISSING An April 2010 New York Times article provides an interesting example. “New York State’s health commissioner… Dr. Richard F. Daines, was recently driving down Interstate 15 in Utah, his home state, when he came across four billboards in a row that beamed a subliminal message at him, and not the one the advertisers intended. ” The repetitive billboards contained phrases that subliminally suggested a healthier lifestyle rather than the consumption of the soda it advertised. As with any subliminal message, there is no telling how it will affect the subject. In the Handbook of Consumer Psychology from 2009, Haugtvedt et. al state, “Subliminal advertising is, at best, a very weak force.
However, there is evidence that subliminally presented stimuli can influence behavior and cognition. ” It just may not be the intended behavior. Transition: Now that we have seen how subliminal messages can be used, let’s examine a few famous cases. III. MP3: The most controversial cases of subliminal messaging surround the fields of politics and music. George Bush’s 2000 political campaign was under scrutiny for displaying the word “RATS” while talking about one of Al Gore’s plans. The ad said “bureaucrats”, but these four letters flashed on the screen independently, creating an uproar.
It was written off as a mere coincidence by the creator of the ad, but was taken off of television nonetheless. Heavy metal music is often scrutinized as a source of violence in adolescents, but the 1990 case of young James Vance and Raymond Belknap suggested it influenced suicide as well. According to Philips and Cogan of the 2009 Encyclopedia of Heavy Metal Music, “subliminal messages in the song “Better by You, Better Than Me” [by Judas Priest] … allegedly had influenced the victims’ actions” to commit suicide. The case was eventually dropped, but its impact was great.
Signal Conclusion: As you have seen, subliminal messaging has been a controversial method of manipulation for years. Summary: I talked about the different forms of subliminal messaging. I also discussed how influential they can be. I followed up with some examples that have created controversy in recent years. Lasting thought: I hope you’ve enjoyed getting to know a little bit more about a topic that really interests me. You’re now free to go play all your music backwards and see what really happens… Questions (15 POINTS) Does the preview adequately map out the main points covered in the speech and is it in the right format? 2 points) I think it does a decent job at mapping out the main points. The second point could use some work, she says it’s about how influential subliminal messages are, then in the paragraph quotes a psychology book that says they are “… at best, a very weak force… ”, and in the transition she says it’s about how they are used. A little confusing. Also, for your class, it’s missing signposts. Does the summary adequately review the main points covered in the speech and is it in the right format? (2 points) Same as in the preview, not sure about point two. Other than that it looks good.
Also, signposts again. Does the speaker include smooth transitions between all of the MPs? (2 points) Yes. Except point the transition into MP2, to me the paragraph is really about when subliminal messages gone wrong; to make that clear she could say, “Now that you know the basics of subliminal messaging, let’s explore how not to use them. ” At least one MP is missing a clear MP sentence. Write a MP sentence for that section. (4 points) MP2: In advertising, subliminal messages are often a disaster. Overall, what is your assessment of the organization of this speech (be concrete in your answer). (5 points)
Overall, the speech is well organized. Main point two is the only area of the speech that really needs work. Though the information in the paragraph is interesting, her point is unclear. I would switch sub-point one and two. Also, take out the second quote, as it can be easily paraphrased, and add in details of what the billboards actually say, that way it makes sense to the listener. Possibly something like this: II. MP2: In advertising, subliminal messages are often a disaster. In the Handbook of Consumer Psychology from 2009, Haugtvedt et. al stated, “Subliminal advertising is, at best, a very weak force.
However, there is evidence that subliminally presented stimuli can influence behavior and cognition. ” The problem with these messages is that it is difficult to tell how it will affect the subject. Sometimes subliminal messages effect the viewer in the opposite way that the advertiser intended it to. An April 2010 New York Times article describes an instance where several billboards for a soda company suggested that viewers should choose a healthier lifestyle, rather than consuming their soda. (fill in with actual content of the ad) (The advertiser intended the message to be… however to some it was perceived as… As shown in this example, subliminal messages are not the best choice when promoting a product. Transition: Now that we have seen how subliminal messages can be misused, let’s examine how they can be successfully used (at least to stir up controversy. ) III. MP3: The most famous cases of subliminal messaging surround the fields of politics and music. Extra Credit (3 POINTS) Explain the difference between a prelim outline, a full sentence outline, and a keyword outline. A prelim outline is the base of a full sentence outline, it has a thesis, transitions, main points, a few sub-points and a conclusion.
Add more detail, more sub-points, an attention getter and a lasting thought and you have your full sentence outline. The full sentence outline should be written in complete sentences and include everything you plan to discuss in the speech. The keyword outline is what you take up with you when you give the speech. I should contain no full sentences, besides the thesis and quotes and statistics that need to be worded in a specific way. It should only include a few words per line that can help you stay on track if you get lost during your speech.