This work contributes to the study of rhetorical writing and communication theory by asking and attempting to answer key questions regarding the Western rhetorical tradition: How and why have we in the west come to accept a canon of authors whose theories scholars and historians typically refer to as the "rhetorical tradition"? And how has that tradition continued to shape theories of verbal communication"? Unlike previous histories of rhetoric, which tended to be purely descriptive and chronological in nature, this work takes the form of a critical history of the persons and theories that have shaped and molded the Western rhetorical tradition from the Pre-Socratics to the 20th century.
Phillip K. Arrington is Professor in the Department of English at Eastern Michigan University.
Foreword; Acknowledgements; Introduction; 1. Positionings - Towards a Dialectics of Influence for Theories of Rhetoric; 2. Of Origins, Mysteries, and Orphic Composers; 3. The "Art" of Logos - from Corax to Isocrates; 4. Plato's Agon Over the "Art" of Rhetoric; 5. Aristotle's Agon Over the Causes of Rhetoric's "Art"; 6. Severed Tongues and Brains - Cicero, Quintillian, and Utopian Rhetorics; 7. Augustine, Erasmus, and Textualizing Rhetoric; 8. The Dialectics of Anti-Rhetoric - from Ramus to Locke; 9. Vico, Nietzsche, and the Tropics of Truth; 10. Dialogues with Their Others - Towards a Canon of Twentieth Century Theorists of Rhetoric; 11. Processing Rhetoric as Writing; 12. Closing to Open...; Notes; Bibliography; Index.