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Last Updated: Sunday, 18 September 2005, 20:35 GMT 21:35 UK
David Cannadine on Churchill
Winston Churchill
Winston Churchill at the BBC microphone

Everyone knows that Winston Churchill was a brilliant phrase-maker and a fantastic orator. But few know how the war leader struggled to find that powerful and inspirational voice.

In Voice of Destiny, a three part series for The Westminster Hour in December 2002, David Cannadine looked at how Churchill's oratory developed from unsteady beginnings to an inspirational motivator during war-time - and how the magic was then broken when peace returned.

Cannadine offers a fresh and revelatory view of Churchill and his oratory. In the first part, he describes how the young Winston battled against both a speech impediment and his nervousness about performing before an audience.

In the second part David Cannadine explains the power and importance of Churchill's wartime speeches and why his style of oratory was so perfectly suited to Britain's time of trial.

Winston Churchill was built for war. Peace he found much more difficult. In the concluding part of his series illuminating Churchill and his oratory, Cannadine explores his post-war struggles against changing fashion and his own advancing years.

Professor David Cannadine is director of the Institute for Historical Research at the University of London. His books include The Pleasures of the Past, The Decline and Fall of the British Aristocracy, G. M. Trevelyan: A Life in History, and History in Our Time

In previous Sunday Supplement series for The Westminster Hour, he has looked at the history of the Palace of Westminster and examined how Britain's post-war Prime Ministers have handled the issue of class.

Click here to find out how Churchill was voted the Greatest PM of the 20th Century by The Westminster Hour's experts.


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