A debate essentially gives two speakers the chance to speak passionately either for (the proposer) or against (the opposer) a motion (the topic for debate).
Our society follows – relatively loosely – a parliamentary style of debate. We begin by taking an initial vote, to indicate views either for or against the motion prior to hearing the arguments. We then begin the debate proper with the main opening speeches, and then the debate is thrown open to the floor. Typically, the contributions from the floor might take around 45 minutes to 1 hour as debate and comment is usually lively. The two main speakers end the debate by taking an opportunity to sum up their arguments, incorporating and emphasising relevant points taken from the floor. Finally a vote is taken to establish which side has made the most convincing argument – either for or against. The comparison to the pre-debate vote is often interesting, and a major swing between the pre and post voting can often be achieved, and can be a sign of a persuasive and healthy debate.
Debating topics range widely – take a look at previous debates to see the topics that have been debated. These range from the great issues of the day to debating the eternal moral and social problems – as well as a few more light-hearted questions.
While each debate is different with regard to the topic, and the contributions made, they all bear the hallmark of friendly debate and each member always respects one another’s views, even when they may disagree with them! No matter how much we take opposing sides during the debate everyone walks out having enjoyed a lively evening, and the best of friends afterwards.
If you’d like to find out more about us, or come along to one of our debates, feel free to get in touch so we can make arrangements for you to join us as a guest one evening.
Please click here for our abridged society rules.