Doing Rhetorical History: Concepts and Cases (Studies Rhetoric & Communicati)

Doing Rhetorical History: Concepts and Cases (Studies Rhetoric & Communicati)

  • ISBN-13: 9780817350482
  • $50.86

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This collection argues that rhetorical history, both as a methodology and as a perspective, offers insights that are central to the study of communication and unavailable through other approaches.   The current field of communication derives from the historical study of rhetoric. Over the last few decades, however, as the trend toward theoretical conceptions has driven analysis and as a host of "isms" has defined criticism, communication studies have moved away from a predominantly historical perspective. Yet many scholars in the field continue to find benefits in rhetorical history. In the thirteen essays gathered here, eminent scholars address the ongoing dialogue over the regrounding of rhetorical study and the relationship between theory and history as well as history and criticism in the field. Some examine the conceptual issues involved in the juncture of rhetoric and history; others offer case studies, often based on research with primary documents, to illustrate the process and promise of rhetorical history. Collectively, their work tests theory and complements criticism while standing as a distinct and valid approach in and of itself. The conceptualizations and methodologies of rhetorical history will increase in significance during the burgeoning "Communication Age" as we seek to cope with the present and prepare for the future by better understanding the past. This volume serves as an excellent overview of a recently neglected methodological approach and acts as the first step in ending that neglect.  

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