Irish student wins European Eloquence Prize

Council of Europe Strasbourg 8 February 2018
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John Finn and Gabriella Battaini-Dragoni

John Finn and Gabriella Battaini-Dragoni

The 2018 Prix européen de l’Eloquence, an annual contest of public speaking in French, has been won by Irish student John Finn, who spoke on the theme of “To dark thoughts, green answers?”. Council of Europe Deputy Secretary General, Gabriella Battaini-Dragoni chaired the jury, which awarded the second prize to Marianne Amerand of France. Third place went to Daria Dziewit of Poland.

The event, which is organised by the School of Young Orators (l’Ecole des Jeunes Orateurs), of the Strasbourg Institute of Political Science in cooperation with the Council of Europe, is intended to strengthen the participating students’ sense of sharing the same European values, to stimulate exchanges and debates and to master public speaking skills.

12 students from 10 countries: Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Japan, Poland, Portugal and the United Kingdom, took part in this year’s event.

The other members of the jury were:

  • Marc Tarabella, Member of European Parliament (co-chair)
  • Eva Joly, Member of European Parliament (co-chair)
  • Yann Olivier, Agence France Presse journalist
  • Gabriel Eckert, Director, Institut d'Etudes Politiques de Strasbourg
  • Vlad Constantinesco, Emeritus Professor at Strasbourg University
  • Julianna Revi, 2016 prize winner

The finalists debated the following topics:

  • Is the asylum of people, the asylum of identities? (L'asile des peuples est-il l'asile des identités ?)
  • To dark thoughts, green answers? (À idées noires, réponses vertes ?)
  • Is the Europe of afflictions, the Europe of silence? (L'Europe des maux est-elle l'Europe du silence ?)

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