Category: Rhetoric and Composition

allegory

A story or arrangement of narration that works on two levels. “Psyche, moved by the fear of the unknown, lit the forbidden lamp in her bedchamber banishing her husband cupid.”…

A story or arrangement of narration that works on two levels.

“Psyche, moved by the fear of the unknown, lit the forbidden lamp in her bedchamber banishing her husband cupid.”

“Gilgamesh, falling asleep on his return from the end of the world, was robbed of the plant that granted eternal life by a snake.”

For examples of this in literature, read Ovid in the Metamorphoses, Dante in La Divina Comedia, or Aesop, perhaps even The Song of Songs.

Allegorical meaning has been considered part of the medieval method of biblical hermeneutic.

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Anapodoton

Employ a subordinate phrase without the main clause.   This produces an incomplete sentence for rhetorical effect. “When in Rome…” When in the course of human affairs…” An apple a…

Employ a subordinate phrase without the main clause.   This produces an incomplete sentence for rhetorical effect.

“When in Rome…”

When in the course of human affairs…”

An apple a day…

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Antonomasia

This occurs in two ways: A proper name may be substituted representing qualities – “He was the Jehu of shopping cart driving.”  “The warnings of health care collapse came from…

This occurs in two ways:

  1. A proper name may be substituted representing qualities – “He was the Jehu of shopping cart driving.”  “The warnings of health care collapse came from the Cassandra of the Senate.”
  2. Conversely, a phrase describing attributes may be substituted for a proper name.  “Old Shatter-Hand drew his rifle on the bandits.”  “The sanctimonious poser admonished the country to have open discussions on racial inequity.”
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Aporia

A state of questionableness, or perplexity that approaches from the basis of unknowability.  A style of dialogue that utilizes this inventive style is ‘aporetic’. We derive a way of talking…

A state of questionableness, or perplexity that approaches from the basis of unknowability.  A style of dialogue that utilizes this inventive style is ‘aporetic’.

We derive a way of talking about what we don’t know.

An example:

St. Augustine in On the Literal Interpretation of Genesis: An Unfinished Book 1.1

Praemittitur regula fidei in Scripturis tractandis.

De obscuris naturalium rerum, quae omnipotente Deo artifice facta sentimus, non affirmando, sed quaerendo tractandum est; in Libris maxime quos nobis divina commendat auctoritas, in quibus temeritas asserendae incertae dubiaeque opinionis, difficile sacrilegii crimen evitat: ea tamen quaerendi dubitatio catholicae fidei metas non debet excedere. Et quoniam multi haeretici ad suam sententiam, quae praeter fidem est catholicae disciplinae, expositionem Scripturarum divinarum trahere consueverunt; ante tractationem huius libri catholica fides breviter explicanda est.

(It is not by way of assertion, but by way of inquiry that we have to treat the hidden matters concerning natural things which we know were made by God, their almighty maker.  Especially in the books that the authority of God has commended to us, rashness in asserting an uncertain and doubtful opinion scarcely escapes the charge of sacrilege.  Still, doubt in inquiry ought not exceed the bounds of the Catholic faith.  Since many heretics try to twist the exposition of the divine Scriptures to their own opinion which stands apart from the faith of the Catholic discipline, we must first briefly explain the Catholic faith before dealing with this book.)

 

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Argument Map

When constructing a proof, and in particular a demonstration, it is useful to map the argument. Creating a syllogism:  Begin with the conclusion.  If you have already established terminology to…

When constructing a proof, and in particular a demonstration, it is useful to map the argument.

Creating a syllogism:  Begin with the conclusion.  If you have already established terminology to be used in your research paper or thesis, find the two terms you wish to relate (i.e. Democracy is Dangerous) and then find a term that relates to both of these.  In this case, perhaps “Going along with the Crowd” would be a term that would go along with both Democracy and Danger.

Example of mapping and creating a syllogism: Democracy Enthymeme

 

 

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Aristotle

The founder of the ‘The Lyceum’ and tutor of Alexander the Great.   Aristotle differs with his teacher Plato concerning the reality and comprehensibility of the ‘Ideal’.   Radical idealism,…

The founder of the ‘The Lyceum’ and tutor of Alexander the Great.   Aristotle differs with his teacher Plato concerning the reality and comprehensibility of the ‘Ideal’.   Radical idealism, the notion that the universal concepts of things are of greater force than the perception of the particular things themselves, is countered with a tempered view that the particulars are necessary to our knowledge of the ‘Ideal’.  It may even be said that the real ideas arise from the entelechy of things themselves. (see the four causes.)

 

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Arrangement

The General of our argument in the service of persuasion.  We marshall our forces via the canon of Arrangement. It includes: Exordium Narratio Divisionem Propositio Enumeratio Confirmatio Refutatio Conclusionem with…

The General of our argument in the service of persuasion.  We marshall our forces via the canon of Arrangement.

It includes:

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Arrangement I

The General of our argument in the service of persuasion.  We marshall our forces via the canon of Arrangement. It includes: Exordium Narratio Divisionem Propositio Enumeratio Confirmatio Refutatio Conclusionem with…

The General of our argument in the service of persuasion.  We marshall our forces via the canon of Arrangement.

It includes:

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