Plato’s view of rhetoric. “Ability and deception versus the genuine and false art.” Plato’s view rhetoric has potential for harm and for good thus there is a sense of moral responsibility and Plato sees this morality as an essential, universal good that must be discovered through language Rhetoric’s issues power, manipulation and relationship to truth. The Sophist was highly controversial in Greece for over century. One of their chief critics is Plato, he attacked the sophistic practice of rhetoric. He successfully anticipates major issues that attend rhetoric throughout its long history issues like power, manipulation and the relationship of rhetoric to truth. According to him the art of rhetoric is defined, but not practiced. He pointed that him rhetoric is used to delegate power, justice and legislation. Athens had a very art-dominated society. Plato depicts Gorgias as a professional teacher of the art of persuasion as the means to political success. He regarded the art of rhetoric superior to all arts. Gorgias believed that words acquire their own meaning, because they are not connected by the bonds of being anything but themselves. Words become open to each and every meaning and hence become meaningless. It is here then that Gorgias states that words are the instrument of suggestion, persuasion, and belief, Gorgias feels that rhetoric is precisely the art of producing these words and can be said to be the art of persuasion. |
Many of Plato's exchanges in Gorgias are full of anger, misunderstanding, and cutting rhetoric. The intent of these exchanges is to distinguish rhetoric from philosophy. Plato is rhetoric himself but he deeply mistrusted because he recognized the power of persuasive words. He rejects rhetorical way of arguing based of probabilities but he engages rhetoric in his tactics when serve on his end. Some historians of rhetoric like Brian Vickers... [continues]
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