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ENG656 History of Rhetoric

Lead Faculty: Dr. Franz J Potter

Course Description

Classical rhetoric focuses on the teachings of the major figures of ancient rhetoric, such as the sophists, Plato, Aristotle, Cicero, and Quintilian. Students will study the classical texts which form the base of modern studies in rhetoric and composition. The course also glosses major shifts through Medieval, Renaissance, and Enlightenment rhetoric.

Learning Outcomes

  • Discuss and analyze seminal texts in rhetoric.
  • Analyze, discriminate, and distinguish disparate ancient views on rhetoric and the uses of language.
  • Apply ancient theory to understanding the persuasive effect of ancient texts.
  • Apply theory toward creation of pedagogical materials for use in teaching in the field of Rhetoric and Composition Studies.
  • Evaluate scholarly texts indicating possible areas of further inquiry.
  • Construct a niche or position and enter scholarly discourse through composing of an argumentative paper with a strong claim.
  • Appraise the changing views of rhetoric over time linking them to broader philosophical movements.