Aristotle's Rhetorical Theory Research Paper by writingsensation

Aristotle's Rhetorical Theory
This paper discusses Aristotle's rhetorical theory and its influence on modern democracy.
# 67988 | 4,080 words | 10 sources | APA | 2005 | US
Published on Jul 27, 2006 in Communication (Language and Speech) , Philosophy (Ancient Greek)

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This paper explains that Aristotle was not the first philosopher to argue from a rational, humanistic perspective nor to suggest that debates and arguments should be performed as an art form known as rhetoric; however, he is the most influential. The author points out that in his "Rhetoric", which is substantially shorter and relatively more straight-forward than most of his work, Aristotle presents a theory of rhetoric as an art that focuses on the capacity to persuade, the usefulness of rhetoric, the necessary elements of persuasion including appeals to emotion, status and logic and presents a wide range of specific stratagem for convincing an audience of one's point. The paper relates that the foundation of the modern approach to society, including the entirety of the modern political system, is fallout from the medieval rediscovery of Aristotle's work; during the Crusades, Europeans re-discovered Latin translations of Aristotle in various libraries throughout the Islamic world.

Table of Contents
Aristotle's Personal Work on "Rhetoric"
Aristotle's Historical Effect on "Rhetoric" and its Continued Fallout
Aristotle's Effects on Modern Democracy and the Sensitivity of Pathos
Does Aristotle Inadvertently Justify the Chicaneries of Modern Lawyers?

From the Paper:

"At the foundation of American democracy, the nation had a relatively homogenous culture. (Assuming, of course, that one follows in the founder's footsteps and ignores the presence of slaves and natives) Athens, also, was a homogenous culture, where the members had most interests in common. So Aristotle's ideas on comprehending the common beliefs on one's audience and building on them based on syllogism and appeals to the common good were quite efficient. However, as the nation aged it has become increasingly multi-cultural, with a wider variety of base worldviews interacting to create the polis. A similar progression has taken place through-out the European democracies, and of course many post-colonial colonies have had to deal with such disparities from the beginning. Hence, it may seem that Aristotle's vision of rhetoric may have difficulties in a modern setting."

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