Here’s an interesting little RSA-style, 12 minute video on the psychology of persuasion:
The information mainly is delivered by Arizona State University’s Robert Caldini, of whom it is written, at the Farnam Street blog:
is the author of Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion and the co-author of the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Business Week International Bestseller Yes! 50 Scientifically Proven Ways to be Persuasive.
For my part, every time I come across information like this I’m struck that (1) it doesn’t get much mention in argumentation theory and (2) that if it is even half correct then the potential for abuse is considerable. Any critical thinking class worth its salt should make students aware of dynamics like those depicted here.