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Rhetoric Blog Post 1

After reading this week’s handouts and from talking in class, I have begun to get a better sense of what rhetoric is. W. Booth says that rhetoric “creates meaning” (Vitanza, 1) and I now see how that is true thanks to our class discussion. We use rhetoric to create meaning to our thoughts and beliefs so that we can communicate them to our community and to other people.

In Antidosis, Plato believes that there are only absolute truths and that rhetoric is manipulative. The example of the O.J Simpson trial was a good example of how we come to determine truths through the shared inquiry of rhetoric. Even though not everyone agreed with the fact that O.J was found not guilty, they understand the conclusion through the shared inquiry of rhetoric.

I am still trying to get a complete grasp on rhetoric but I feel like the handouts are helping me understand. Rhetoric creates meaning to our own thoughts but helps us understand those of others as well. Even though I don’t think that rhetoric is always manipulative, I do agree that rhetoric is used to persuade people to come to certain beliefs and that rhetoric is created by social circumstances.

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