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Salient. Victoria University Student Newspaper. Vol 35 no. 15. 1972

Plunket Medal Oratory

Plunket Medal Oratory

At 8p.m. next Friday evening, 7 July, the University Memorial Theatre will see the beginning of the 66th annual Plunket Medal Oratory Contest.

Oratory is commonly thought of in terms of pomposity and elocution. But those are sure ways of crapping-out in Plunket Medal because the whole basis of oratory is sincerity. This must seek to avoid exaggerations of fact, dictation and manner. Public speaking is often a coldly intellectual informative (and boring) thing. But oratory is much wider, seeking to convince the reason and stir the emotions.

Plunket Medal was established by the Debating Society in 190S at the instigation of the Governor, Lord Plunket. Despite, or maybe because of, the incessant criticism it has attracted, Plunket Medal has become known as the top contest of its kind in New Zealand. It has attracted such diverse contestants as John Platts-Mills, Guy Powles Roy Jack, Conrad Bollinger, Owen Gager, John Wareham and David Shand.

Speakers (in order of appearance) will be:
  • Kim Whitta: General Robert E. Lee
  • Peter Boshier: But I am Somebody
  • Jean Scott: The Fighting Spirit
  • Brett Newell: Quo Vadis New Zealand
  • Tony Adeane: To Be Decided
  • John Laurenson: Thoughts on Western Concern
  • Peter Coles: Eighty Years from Te Aroha
  • Tim Groser: The Political Challenge of the Ecology Movement.