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A supposed contradiction about emotion-arousal in Aristotle's *Rhetoric*

Dow, Jamie (2007) A supposed contradiction about emotion-arousal in Aristotle's *Rhetoric*. Phronesis, 52 (4). pp. 382-402. ISSN 1568-5284

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Aristotle, in the Rhetoric, appears to claim both that emotion-arousal has no place in the essential core of rhetorical expertise and that it has an extremely important place as one of three technical kinds of proof. This paper offers an account of how this apparent contradic- tion can be resolved. The resolution stems from a new understanding of what Rhetoric I.1 refers to – not emotions, but set-piece rhetorical devices aimed at manipulating emotions, which do not depend on the facts of the case in which they are deployed. This understand- ing is supported by showing how it fits with evidence for how rhetoric was actually taught in the fifth and fourth centuries BCE, in particular by Thrasymachus and Gorgias. The proposed interpretation fits well with Aristotle’s overall view of the nature of rhetoric, the structure of rhetorical speeches, and what is and is not relevant to the pragma, the issue of the case at hand.

Item Type: Article
Copyright, Publisher and Additional Information: The published papers is available from the author's web site at http://www.hps.leeds.ac.uk/Staff/JD/
Keywords: Aristotle, rhetoric, emotion, slander, Thrasymachus, Gorgias
Institution: The University of Leeds
Academic Units: The University of Leeds > Faculty of Arts (Leeds) > School of Humanities (Leeds) > School of Philosophy (Leeds)
The University of Leeds > Faculty of Arts (Leeds) > School of Humanities (Leeds) > Inter-Disciplinary Ethics Applied (IDEA CETL) (Leeds)
Depositing User: Dr Jamie Dow
Date Deposited: 16 Sep 2008 09:40
Last Modified: 15 Sep 2014 01:26
Published Version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/156852807X229267
Status: Published
Publisher: Brill
Refereed: Yes
Identification Number: 10.1163/156852807X229267
Related URLs:
URI: http://eprints.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/4620

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