Essay on “Do Not Raise Your Voice, Increase Your Argument” – Desmond Tutu

“Do Not Raise Your Voice, Increase Your Argument” – Desmond Tutu

"Do Not Raise Your Voice, Increase Your Argument" - Desmond Tutu


The quote, “Do Not Raise Your Voice, Increase Your Argument,” attributed to Archbishop Desmond Tutu, encapsulates a profound message about the power of effective communication and peaceful discourse. In a world often characterized by heated debates and shouting matches, this saying emphasizes the importance of reasoned, respectful, and persuasive arguments. This essay will delve into the significance of this quote, exploring how it promotes constructive dialogue, conflict resolution, and positive social change.

Effective Communication:

At its core, the quote underscores the idea that the strength of an argument lies not in its volume but in its substance. Raising one’s voice may grab attention, but it does not necessarily win hearts and minds. To “increase your argument” means to enhance the quality and persuasiveness of one’s position through well-reasoned points, evidence, and a calm demeanor. Effective communication fosters understanding and opens the door to meaningful dialogue.

Conflict Resolution:

In the context of conflict resolution, this quote serves as a valuable guide. When faced with disputes or disagreements, the natural inclination for many is to become confrontational and escalate the situation by raising their voices. However, Tutu’s message reminds us that a more productive approach involves maintaining composure and presenting a compelling case. By doing so, individuals can facilitate peaceful resolutions and bridge divides.

Respectful Discourse:

Respect is a fundamental element of “increasing your argument.” By engaging in respectful discourse, individuals acknowledge the dignity of others and create an environment conducive to productive discussions. Raising one’s voice often leads to defensiveness and entrenchment of opposing views, while a calm and respectful approach encourages openness to alternative perspectives.

Positive Social Change:

Desmond Tutu, a prominent advocate for social justice and human rights, understood the power of this principle in effecting positive change. His own life and work were characterized by a commitment to non-violence, reconciliation, and dialogue, particularly during South Africa’s struggle against apartheid. By following Tutu’s advice to “increase your argument,” individuals and communities can contribute to social progress and justice through peaceful means.

Global Relevance:

In an era marked by polarization and divisiveness, this quote holds global relevance. It encourages people from all walks of life to engage in more constructive and empathetic conversations, whether addressing political differences, social inequalities, or environmental challenges. The wisdom it imparts is a timeless reminder that change is often best achieved through reason and understanding rather than confrontation.


Desmond Tutu’s quote, “Do Not Raise Your Voice, Increase Your Argument,” offers a timeless and invaluable lesson in effective communication, conflict resolution, and fostering positive social change. By emphasizing the power of reasoned discourse, respectful dialogue, and the quality of one’s arguments, it inspires individuals to be agents of understanding and reconciliation. In a world that often amplifies discord, this saying serves as a beacon of hope, guiding us toward a more harmonious and just future.


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