Verbal and visual rhetoric in a media world pages:9-37
Since Aristotle, the study of rhetoric has focused on the persuasive aspect of discourse in the political, forensic and ceremonial domains. Rhetoric deals with doxa, the shared opinions and reasons people consider plausible and acceptable in a specific situation, in the realm of appearance, ambiguity, change and opinion. More than a set of devices, rhetoric is the faculty of observing in any given case the available means of persuasion.
The scope of rhetorical scholarship is enlarged, however, and the paradigm of the monologic and oratorial speech delivery has expanded to all verbal communication in public interaction. Its perspective has widened from exclusively verbal language to the study and interpretation of other symbolical languages, such as art and visual artifacts.
This introduction explores perspectives for the study of rhetoric in society and the question how the discipline can reconcile tradition with renewal. It focuses on theory and explorations, rhetorical analysis, media discourse, new media, and visual rhetoric.