On Rhetoric: A Theory of Civic Discourse Chapter Abstracts for Teachers

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Chapter Abstracts

Book I, Chapters 1-3

* Aristotle defined rhetoric as neither an art nor a science because it was a form of persuasion.

* By examining both sides of a question, the truth can be located, and positions defended with accuracy.

* As one of the three modes of persuasion, the ethical appeal attempted to validate the speaker's credibility.

* The second mode of persuasion, emotional appeal, utilizes feelings rather than reason, while the third mode of persuasion, the logical appeal, is based on sound argumentation.

* Aristotle ended the section with a discussion of the three main areas of rhetoric: political, legal, and epideictic.

Book I, Chapters 4-9

* The five subjects of political oratory were outlined in Book I, Chapter 4, including resources, national defense, and legislation.

* A political rhetorician's plan should be in line with the happiness or prosperity of the state or country.

* Aristotle described the good as being comprised of happiness...

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