It’s not just what’s said. It’s also who says it.

Here’s a quick quiz. Four of the American politicians pictured below are Democrats and four are Republicans. Can you guess which are which?

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David Cameron speech bingo – Now. Is the time. To play

David-Cameron-speaks-to-t-015.jpg[Originally published at guardian.co.uk, Wednesday 10 October 2012, before David Cameron’s speech at the 2012 Conservative Party Conference. Reproduced in time for David Cameron’s speech at the 2013 Conservative Party Spring conference with kind permission of the author.]

From asyndeton to hyperbole, how many of Cameron’s tics will you spot in his speech today? Simon Lancaster sets the tone

I start with asyndeton. Short sentences. Bundled together. In groups of three. Sounds breathless. Urgent. Hyperventilating. No conjunctions. Wonky grammar. Disconnected ideas. Look left. Look right. Look centre. They’re listening. They’re watching. They’re feeling. Then stop. Pause. Breathe.

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Repetition, repetition, repetition

On Tuesday 5 February, MPs backed a bill to legalise gay marriage in England and Wales. A number of MPs made impassioned speeches in support and opposing the bill but one that stood out for me was by David Lammy, MP for Tottenham who drew a parallel between race equality and equality for for lesbians, gay men and bisexuals. It stood out as a good example of some of the points I am interested in in this project; an example of repetition, an example of movement and an example of identity.

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