RHE 350 Contemporary Rhetorical Theory and Criticism
Contemporary studies in rhetoric have shifted away from the public address to focus on rhetoric more broadly conceived while maintaining a clear connection with the rhetorical tradition that stretches back to the classical period. In what has been termed the “rhetorical turn,” contemporary scholars and intellectuals from the fields of philosophy, English, anthropology, history, and other disciplines have revised this classical debate in a number of productive ways. Rhetoric, whether implicitly or explicitly, has become a focus of discussion throughout the modern academy. Beginning with traditional theories of rhetorical criticism, the class highlights the growing complexity of the field, proceeding from the idea that communication and media shape the culture in which we live. The class is a methodological precursor to the senior project in that students are required to read contemporary rhetorical theorists with understanding and utilize their theories and perspectives in the practice of rhetorical criticism. This course is offered in the fall semester.