Rhetorical Criticism Exam 1

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What is the function of literary criticism, according to Herbert Wichelns?
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is concerned with permanence and beauty
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What is the function of rhetorical criticism, according to Herbert Wichelns?
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concerned with effect.
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What happens in each of the parts of a neo-Aristotelian criticism?
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a.Reconstructing the context in which the rhetorical artifact occurred. Applying the five canons of rhetoric to the artifact b.Assessing effects of the rhetorical artifact
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Reconstructing the context in which the rhetorical artifact occurred
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Talk about who the rhetor is Look at the audience Approach the occasion a short term or a long term way What is/What are the rhetor’s goals?
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five canons of rhetoric
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Invention,Organazation, style, delivery and memory
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Invention
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The speakers major lines of arguments or the content of the speech or ideas
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Ethos
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credibility of rhetor….what the rhetor brings to/contributes to the speech All below, relative to audience and topic Good sense—does the rhetor have expertise. Site sources, personal connection thru experience or an organization. Good will—audience best interest in the mind. Good moral character-does rehtor reflect the values of the audience
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Pathos
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appeals to the emotions of the audience or what the audience brings to a speech. What are some of the emotions rhetors might try to appeal to? Fear, harmony, sorrow, loss, pride, patriotism, optamisism, excitement
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Logos
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The logic of the speech/the speech itself
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Inductive Reasoning (logos)
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arguing from specific to general. Aristotle said, Need to have enough cases and representative
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Deductive reasoning (logos)
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arguing from a large general claim to a specific case. Aristotle said when at all possible try to make deductive arguments
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Organazation
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can help people to inform/persuade
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Style
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Use of language
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Delivery
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the physical presentation of a speech
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memory
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Because it was difficult to write the speech down, the Greeks didn’t have the resources to do that. Known as \”the last cannon\” because we really don’t need to think about that anymore
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Assessing effects of the rhetorical artifact
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Short term effects Long term effects
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How did Gary Brown describe the context of Saddam Hussein’s war addresses?
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Hussein as a rhetor, the occasions on which the rhetoric was presented, and the audience to whom the rhetoric was addressed
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How did Brown argue that Hussein used invention?
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by stating logical arguments, ethos, pathos
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What were Hussein’s three major logical arguments?
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If I can take an actions its because Ala allowed it to happen Kuwait had long been part of Iraq Western Socities were evil
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How did Hussein try to establish ethos?
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quotes the Koran, identify w/them not only because they have the same religion but he’s going thru the same experience. Keeps justifying what happen in Kuwait. Relies more on repetition because in some Arab cultures that’s how you build an argument. Good sense—quotes the Koran Good will—as a religious leader, quoting from the Koran
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How did Hussein try to generate pathos?
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religious pride and patritatism with the use of the Koran. Talks about various issues in the Arab well, the fate of Palastine and the state of security in other states….trying to get like minded states to support him. Talks about the holy war.
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What type of organization did Hussein use?
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opens with quote of Koran, praises the courage of the Iraqe people, predicts Iraq will be victorious. Argues that all western societies are evil, Then he says lets have all Arab states unite.
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How does Brown describe the style of Hussein’s speeches?
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Classical Arabic dialect, this assured that every Arab citizen was able to understand his speech
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How does Brown describe the delivery of Hussein’s speeches?
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it wasn’t memorizied he was reading from a script. Not only passionate but it promoted his control over the people. He wrote his speech way earlier than when he wrote them because of how carefully his words were chosen
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Does Brown argue that Hussein’s speeches were effective or not? Why and how?
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It was effective because he got people to become sympathic for his cause and he obtained followers. He obtained quite a bit of his powers for some years after that.
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How did Nixon develop ethos (Checkers Speech)
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i.Good sense—he was a laywer. Had a lot of facts and figures. Had the independent audit done. Comes across as very put together. ii.Good will—Talked about truth and how he wanted everyone to know he was telling the truth. Said he thinks the people should have more confidence in the vice president. \”Could have put my wife on my payroll, but I didn’t but my opponent did.\” Talks about gifts, that people have tried to give him, once that he has accepted and ones that he hasn’t. Said one gift he accepted was a dog he was given, named Checkers. Said he won’t give that gift back. He has nothing to hide. iii.Good moral Character– Wife doesn’t wear a mink coat but she wears a good republican coat….Basically says family is important. He can relate to everyone because he’s just the same as everyone else. Trustworthy and people don’t have anything to worry about. Talks about his military service, received a couple of gold stars, says was just there when the bomb were falling.
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How did Nixon develop pathos (Checkers Speech)
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Tax payers shouldn’t be charged for anything political—humility, pride and patratism. Pulling out understanding from people—they begin to shift their attributes about what he did with the money. He says he’s the average man. Doesn’t feel like only rich man she run for office and quotes Lincoln about the average man. Talks about the amount of money he’s made and what he’s paid for things. Appeals to people, mans man, it’s family…write down all the things you want to check off your list to appealing to the masses
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How did Nixon develop logos (Checkers Speech)
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Tries to justify the $ he receives from the state and what he uses it for and the other $ and what he uses it for, such as paying for trips, and anything political. Also talks about how his wife, could work for him but doesn’t and states he would rather hire someone who needs the job.
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How would you analyze Nixon’s style?
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Everyday language in a delivery that’s very down to earth. Being very direct, like a fireside chat. Vocabulary is very straight forward
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How would you analyze Nixon’s delivery?
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Very direct. Only focused on clearing his name vs dragging someone else’s name thru the mud.
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What was the historical and rhetorical context of Richard Nixon’s \”Vietnamization\” speech?
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Antiwar movement scheduled a Moratorium day for Oct. 15, 1969. On Oct 13th the white house announced that Nixon was going to deliver a major policy speech on Vietnam. White house undercut the Moratorium Day to control political damage. He delivered his speech on Nov 3rd. Watched a news clip that gives us some good visuals a sense of how compelling this issue was for people.
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What were possible options about ending or continuing the Vietnam War that Nixon discussed (and could have discussed) in the speech?
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1.Fixed schedule withdrawl…problem is if you don’t meet it, it’s really bad. The enemy knows when you’re leaving, so they can take over. He mentions this but says, we aren’t going to do that. 2.Immediate withdrawl….problem you don’t achieve your objective and you make it seem like you can’t get it done….so Nixon says we aren’t doing that. 3.Escalation—He doesn’t mention this. 4.Negotiation—He says we had everything ready to go but the Vietnamese didn’t follow thru Vietnamizaiton—Vietnamizasie the people there…..this was his solution and lots of people were against it. We’ll start training the South Vietnamise, to be able to defend themselves, make them good soldiers, and be able to come up and take over their destiny. Undercut the demonstrations that they had been planning, people who were part of this demonstrations were very upset. Was a speech that was proven to be very unpopular
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What were Hill’s general conclusions about Nixon’s speech?
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1.The speech was designed for the middle of the road audience, (\”silent majority\”).—He wasn’t trying to speak to the protesters, who also isn’t saying lets go in and bomb them, the people who he’s talking to are probably the people who support the president…..who trust the president, who think he has more information than anyone else and want to see what he’s going to do with that. Hill states this was the right audience (the silent majority). Hill says it set up some discomfort within the field. 2.Speech was crafted by a superior technician—speech was successful. His goal was to speak to the silent majority and he picked the right audience.
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What are three things that neo-Aristotelian criticism does not account for, according to Hill?
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1.Wisdom of the choice of target audience. We don’t question rather or not the speaker chose the right audience, we just say this is who he chose and rather it was successful. 2.Whether or not a policy is politically viable. This a job for political scientist and historians. We are rhetorical critics. 3.The estimated truth of the rhetor’s statement. We are looking at whether he made the right appeals to the audience he chose to speak to. We aren’t qualified and that’s really not our interest
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What are some limitations of neo-Aristotelian criticism, according to Foss and class discussion?
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1.Is effect the best measure of a speech? We want to say something more about what the speaker is saying. 2.Neo-Aristotelian criticism presumes a rational bias. There are some people who are just trying to stir things up. Ex. Pita, Green Peace, the animal activist who go in and release animals and ruin years of scientific research…probably not the best way to make their argument. 3.Neo-Aristotelian criticism presumes discursive bias—-assumes that people are making arguments based on language, you can’t really talk about the cannons. 4.One rhetor/one speech at a time….what if I wanted to look at more than one speech to compare a variety of speeches on the same categories or to see how his/her ideas developed. Neo-Aristotelian doesn’t really give us an opportunity to talk about that. 5.Tends to focus on what is deemed \”significant\” speeches 6.Neo-Aristotelian criticism can be mechanical—gives you a good way to say a lot about a speech but it just is very mechanical…..it’s a good use because all the steps are there.
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What is genre or generic criticism?
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It seeks to discover commonalities in rhetorical patterns across recurring situations. Whether than looking at one speaker/one speech, you’re looking at combinations of speeches
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What are the situational requirements of genre?
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The perception that conditions in a situation call forth a particular kind of response. (very similar to rhetorical situation) What are some of the things you expect in a eulogy? positive praise of deceased’s life, about the future, a story that invites us to think about our own life and what we want to do with it, universal experience of grief, relating to your own life and your own expectations. Commencement addresses? Something inspiring, talk about the future
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What are the substantive requirements of genre?
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Is referring to features of the rhetoric itself. Humor, it’s a type of expression so we make a lot of attributions about it but humor can happen in response to a lot of situations. Where might you see humor? A wedding toast, class lecture, some euglogy’s, sermons, comedy shows…..illustrates that with all those other genres (not comedy shows) they are not defined as humorous situations but we recognize the humor as the humor itself, it’s the rhetoric itself. Fear appeals? We recognize them when we hear them, even though may not happen normally in a particular situation. Identify these as it happens or after it happens….it’s not your expectation when going into it.
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What are Aristotle’s rhetorical categories?
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Forensic rhetoric,Epideictic rhetoric,Deliberative rhetoric
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Forensic rhetoric
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rhetoric concerning the past; legal rhetoric—like a murder trial
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Epideictic rhetoric
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rhetoric concerning the present; ceremonial rhetoric—people come together to celebrate or mourn—like a wedding toast or eugology
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Deliberative rhetoric
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rhetoric concerning the future; political rhetoric—what politicians say they are going to do
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What are two reasons to engage in generic criticism?
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1.Rhetorical critics can understand social reality and its relationship to rhetoric. Example—Inaugural Speech 2.Critics who study genres can see how rhetorical acts influence each other and how rhetoric is shaped by prior rhetoric. Example—look at past speeches while putting together your speech; in the same genre.
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What are the types of generic criticism?
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Generic description, Generic participation, Generic application
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Generic description?
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A critic is trying to determine, does a genre exist? Need to have similarities, requires looking at a lot of examples
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Generic participation?
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Does a certain artifact belong in an already established genre? Like LBJ’s inauguration and eulogy
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Generic application?
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According to an already established genre, how can we evaluate a particular text? Talk about a genre then evaluate a section of it
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What are the situational similarities and differences between Ann Richards’ eulogy and Robert Kennedy’s eulogy?
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Similarities—They were both eulogies, both made people think about their own life and what they have done, both praised the deceased Differences—Robert Kennedy was suppose to be giving a campaign speech. Ann Richards was at the actual funeral
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What are the substantive/stylistic similarities and differences between Richards’ eulogy and Kennedy’s eulogy?
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Differences—Kennedy used fear as a way to try and not have people riot, Richards used humor because she was a close personal friend of the deceased.
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What is apologia?
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To account for or defend oneself against accusations of wrong doing. (Don’t have to say your sorry)
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What is the apologia strategy of denial?
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The speaker disavows the act of wrong doing, the contention that an action was wrong, or the intent to do something wrong.
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What is the apologia strategy of bolstering?
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The speaker tries to emphasized a positive relationship between herself or himself and something the audience values. (Nixon did that w/his relationship to government…stressed relationships w/common people, spoke about his life)
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What is the apologia strategy of differentiation?
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The speaker tries to get the audience to view the act in a new and different context.
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What is the apologia strategy of transcendence?
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The speaker tries to associate perceived wrong doing with a higher goal or purpose. Oliver North—Iran Contra Scandal—was selling arms to hostiles, his defense was, I did it for a greater good to help people.
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According to Nelson, what apologia strategies did Billie Jean King use in her defense?
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Bolstering…had her husband at all of her appearances. Admitted to the affair while denying being gay, said she wanted to have children—this is an example of differentiation. Her husband helped her with that strategy. Her father supported her, as well. Bolstering—talked about her own honesty, said it’s a mistake and I know it was mistake, trying to reinforce that she was a good person.
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According to Nelson, what apologia strategies did Billie Jean King’s peers use in defense of King?
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Did a lot of Bolstering—tried to reinforce all of the things that she did…fought for women getting equal pay. Transcendence—they talked about, would her being gay be the worst thing in the world. Talked about privacy and about her affair really was only her husband and Billie’s business.
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What are some negative (and from our perspective, wrong) associations with the word \”rhetoric?\”
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Spin/biased/fooling people, opposite of action, vague/empty, ornamentation
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What is Foss’s definition of rhetoric?
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Humans using symbols for the purpose of communicating
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What does it mean to say that humans are the creators of rhetoric?
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Rhetoric is limited to human rhetors as the originator or creators of messages.
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What does it mean to say that symbols are the medium for rhetoric?
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Something that stands for something
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What does it mean to say that communication is the purpose of rhetoric?
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Rhetoric is synonymous with communication
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What are four communicative purposes of rhetoric?
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To invite understanding, to persuade people, as a way of knowing ourselves, defines reality
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What does Foss mean when she says that rhetoric \”tells us what reality is\”?
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Reality is not fixed but changes according to the symbols we use to talk about it.
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What is Foss’s definition of criticism?
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It’s importance and it’s functions are immediate and ephemeral
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What is \”systematic analysis\” and how does it enable us to explain rhetoric?
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a.Think a little bit more of what it is you’re analyzing. In order for criticism to be more critical you’re building catagories in your mind. b.Evidence c.Methods of evaluation d.A way of making evaluations / judgements about the methods
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Rhetorical Act
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it’s performed in the presence of the rhetor’s intended audience.
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Rhetorical Artifacts
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Consists of any tangible evidence of a rhetorical act. i. Ex. Recording of a speech, notes in a class ii. Most researchers use artifacts because it’s a much better to think about , what did I think about that, what kind of method was used?
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four purposes of rhetorical criticism, according to Foss?
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a.We may learn (or make a contribution to) rhetorical theory. b.Learn more about the artifacts themselves c.We may become better rhetors. d.We may become more educated and discerning audience members by being better rhetoric critics.
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What is Plato’s theory of the forms?
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for every concept there was a form. a.The ideal essence of something.
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What is Plato’s allegory of the cave?
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Captures Plato’s view of humanity
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Allegory of the cave
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a.Starts with a cave that goes underground b.Is that humanity basically resides at the bottom of the cave c.We live at the bottom of a dark, cold, moist cave…people just were not able to put things together very well…he had a very dim view of people’s potential. Able to build a fire but has a very interesting affect on people’s perceptions. The people stuck at the bottom of the cave can’t see the forms cz they are up above the cave. They was a wall that prevented them from walking out of the cave. Occasionaly someone is able to get up over the wall and see the forms(they see all the truth). How do they react? It’s all different than what they thought. They can’t handle the truth
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What is Plato’s vision of truth?
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He says truth is absolute a.Truth is unchanging—the forms don’t ever change, our perceptions may change but truth never does. b.It’s difficult for people to know or apprehend c.People’s perception of truth often changes
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What is Plato’s vision of rhetoric?
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a.Invariably bad—rhetoric is always a bad thing b.Rhetor’s cannot be trusted—this is because of the allegory of the cave
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What are two important Sophistic ideas?
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a.For every argument there’s an equal and opposite argument b.Humanity is the measure of all things.—In other words, we decide.
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What is the Sophists’ view of rhetoric?
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a.Rhetoric is necessary …how can you decide rules or laws without listening to all the arguments b.Ideally, rhetoric is responsible…which fit in with what they did for a living, by going places and teaching people rhetoric—how to be better communicator, better persuaders
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What is Aristotle’s view on truth?
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argues that truth exists but we need rhetoric to help it emerge
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What is Aristotle’s view on rhetoric?
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rhetoric-The faculty(a skill an ablility) for discovering the available means of persuasion in a given case/instance.
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What are important considerations in selecting an artifact?
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Analyze that it’s appropriate for the method you will be applying, Must contain the kinds of data that are the focus of the units of analysis of the method. Should be something you really like or really dislike, something that puzzles or baffles you, or something that you cannot explain. Let your interest in daily encounters with artifacts guide you.
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What is involved in analyzing an artifact?
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Write your notes about the artifact in a list, physically cut the observations you have made apart so that each idea or observation is on a separate sheet of paper, group the strips that are about the same thing and put them in a pile, group the strips that are about something else and put them in another pile, play around with different ways to organize your piles. The strips of paper allow you to group and regroup your codings into different categories and encourage you to experiment with multiple ways of conceptualizing the data of your artifact.
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What is a research question?
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About 4 basic components of communication process—the rhetor, the audience, the situation and the message
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Humanistic Research
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offers one well argued interpretation, assesses texts that are delivered in natural contexts
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Social Science Research
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to achieve results that can be replicated, manipulates contexts to identify and study variables
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How does Foss describe the standards of evaluation for critical essays?
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Justification, reasonable inference and coherence
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What are two primary assumptions that underlie standards for evaluation?
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Reality is created through rhetoric, A critic can know an artifact only through personal interpretation of it
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What are three standards for judging an essay of criticism?
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Does the critic provide evidence to justify his or her claims? Does the critic make reasonable inferences based on the evidence? Are the arguments coherent?
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What is situation? How does it define rhetoric?
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Rhetoric is what a rhetorical situation calls faith; it is a response to a rhetorical situation
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What are the following components of Bitzer’s rhetorical situation?
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Exigence, audience, constraints
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Exigence
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a situation of imperfection marked by urgency. That can be modified thru discourse
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Audience
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people who are capable of being influenced by the discourse, who also can help modify the exigence
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Constraints
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Anything that affects the audiences ability to modify the exigence. Can be positive or negative. Can be tangible or intangible
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What is Bitzer’s rhetorical?
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Rhetorical situations are recognized by rhetors Some rhetorical situations may go unanswered. Rhetorical situations call for fitting or appropriate responses What separates rhetoric from art and science is the need for an audience
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Vatz’s response to Bitzer’s rhetorical situation?
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Was in response to, rhetorical situations are recognized by rhetors, Vatz’s said, rhetors create rhetorical situations rather than respond. Vatz acknowledges that it’s a good framework

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