Week 1: Introduction
rhetoric; rhetor; public address; rhetorical theory; rhetorical criticism
1)According to Locke, Rhetoric was described as a powerful tool of deception, we should aspire to scientific language or a “perfect cheat” 2) Quintilian- The Art of speaking well
3) According to Professor,- Rhetoric is strategic-often persuasive use of communication
One who does or performs rhetoric.
Uses rhetoric through speech, writing, music, etc.
Public Address- The history of rhetorical acts (old and new speakers and speeches) In addition, Why Study history of Public Address?
a) Understand historical actors in their own right
b) Understand our present moment (legacies and touchstones) --> Touchstone- Something we draw upon and refer to today to make an argument --> Legacies- Issues such as race that still influence us today. What people did in the past directly influences what we can or cannot do
Rhetorical Theory- The ways in which scholars try to give a general account of features and principles of rhetoric. Includes type of discourse, context (The rhetorical situation) and identity (how rhetoric shapes identity) Rhetorical Theory is general.
-Involves interpreting, analyzing, and evaluating particular rhetorical acts. Again, it is particular.
Week 2: World War II
rhetorical situation; close textual analysis; strategic ambiguity; declarative tone; characterization; repetition; neo-classical criticism; ethos; logos; pathos; syllogism; enthymeme
Rhetorical situation: Lloyd Bitzer’s theory on context, which includes: 1. Exigence- “imperfection marked by urgency” (ex. Pearl Harbor), Exigence calls for discourse 2. Audience- “mediators of change” as a result of the speech, War Message- Primary audiences, Congress: declare war, American people- define, reassure, rally 3. Constraints- Anything that limits action (ex. Events, laws, beliefs) According to the Professor, there can also be enabling conditions
Close Textual Analysis: A form of criticism that focuses on how the rhetor uses artistry and aesthetics to persuade the audience (art for art’s sake), rather than focusing on logic and reasons. This type of criticism looks at words, sentences, and syllables to see how they persuade the audience.
(FDR – Declaration of War: 1941)
Strategic ambiguity: Being deliberately vague as a rhetorical strategy · “We will win absolute victory” (FDR) without specifying what victory entails
Declarative Tone- Elevates and persuades, Deems facts powerful, A rhetorical strategy using factual and authoritative language to construct a more convincing argument. (FDR) o Examples:
1st sentence of FDRs speech- “date which will live in infamy” marks/ makes history with this statement § Certainty - “we will defend”
§ Strategic ambiguity “we will win absolute victory”
§ Righteous patriotism “so help us God”
Characterization- actors in the speech, A rhetorical strategy that describes/portrays actors in a particular way, typically in terms of good vs. evil. In FDRs speech:
America = innocent victim (passive voice), US portrayed as peaceful and righteous actor Japan = imperial aggressor (deceptive, plotting)
Heroes vs. villains
Repetition- A rhetorical strategy that amplifies or emphasizes a specific point, position, or idea. · DoI: Bill of Particulars/ grievance – 28 counts against the UK · The point of repetition is to emphasize
· Magnifies aggression – FDR emphasizes each island that was attacked during Pearl Harbor during his speech
FDR made policy speeches prior to War Message that laid the platform and gave his position on the war, four freedoms lay out what is at stake in the war
Neo-Classical Criticism- A form of criticism that focuses on how rhetors employ logos (reasoning), ethos (credibility/character), and pathos (evoke emotions in...