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The History & Theory of Rhetoric - Assignment Example

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This paper demonstrates the view and different approach of famous philosophers to Rhetoric. …
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The History & Theory of Rhetoric
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Download file to see previous pages In its usual acceptation, the concept of rhetoric is concerned with persuasion and indifferent to truth. It is primarily aimed at persuading and appeals to emotion than the intellect and therefore could be considered irrational and based not on knowledge but belief without it. This is the reason why I agree with Socrates about rhetoric. A person through rhetoric, for instance, could persuade his audience that he is an expert in a field although he is not. In Phaedrus, Socrates explained this succinctly:
When the orator instead… puts good for evil, being himself as ignorant of their true nature as the city on which he imposes is ignorant; and having studied the notions of the multitude, falsely persuades them… about good which he confounds with evil… what will be the harvest. (p. 64)
Plato rejects the Sophists’ rhetoric because of its alleged exclusion of truth and that it is entirely concerned not with truth but merely with persuasion, often taking advantage of the ignorance of an audience while at the same time pandering to its prejudices instead of seeking a moral and objective foundation.
In sum, the true art of rhetoric for Plato, must support the theoretical and moral values and on them, within appropriate limits, it must base itself and not on sentiments or emotions. The true art of rhetoric is considered as the authentic rhetoric – one that is not separated from truth and justice.
Gorgias explicitly stated that a good rhetor is knowledgeable about justice, and also he has the power to commit injustice. Furthermore, he must possess goodwill and candor. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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