Approved by Faculty Senate

University Studies Course Approval Form

 

1. Department of Program: Communication Studies
2. Course Number: 283
3 Semester Hours: 3
4. Frequency of Offering : Every Semester
5. Course title: Introduction to Rhetorical Studies

6. Catalog Description: Provides an introduction to the study of rhetoric and public address. The primary focus is on the manner in which people use communication to influence the behavior of others. It includes a broad survey of rhetorical theorists from Plato to the post modernists.

7. This is an existing course previously approved by A2C2: Yes

8. This is a new course proposaapproved by A2C2:   No

9. University Studies requirement this course would satisfy: Arts and Sciences Core: Humanities

10. Department Contact Person: Ted Reilly 457-5238 ereilly@vax2

11. General Course Outcomes: Students will gain an understanding and appreciation of the importance and relevance of rhetorical theory and criticism. This will be accomplished through readings, lecture, discussion, presentations, and through the practice of rhetorical criticism. By the end of the course, students will understand and be able to apply the historical and contemporary approaches to rhetorical theory and criticism.

12. Course Outcomes:

a. identify and understand specific elements and assumptions of a particular Humanities discipline.

Rhetoric has been characterized by scholars as the most humanistic of disciplines. We will study ways of knowing, interpreting, and communicating human experience. Through such study, we come to know more fully the various modes of expression and the ways values are communicated through them. The course includes the study of invention, organization, stylistics, and delivery in the communication of knowledge and experience. The course begins with a survey of the ancient theorists such as Plato, Aristotle, Socrates, Gorgias, Cicero, Quintilian, and Isocrates in light of their contributions to rhetoric and the maintenance of the polis. Other theoretical and practical approaches are considered by religionists (St. Augustine), epistemologists (Descartes, Vico, Campbell, Whately), and contemporary theorists such as Burke, Weaver, Foucault and Habermas. Each is considered in regard to their treatment of rhetoric as a civil and humane practice necessary for the existence of society.

b. understand how historical context, cultural values and gender influence perceptions and interpretations.

The course pays significant attention to the role of context and individual perceptions across all communication encounters. Particular attention is paid to the elements of human communication such as the source, receiver, message and environmental factors which frame and determine meaning. Studying these elements of human interaction allows us to more fully appreciate the roles of culture, gender and race in interpreting discourse, and ultimately, human experience.

 

c. understand the role of critical analysis (e.g. aesthetic, historical, literary, philosophical, rhetorical ) in interpreting and evaluating expression of human experience.

 

A significant portion of the course is devoted to rhetorical criticism. One of the texts

for the course is a methods book, and approximately half of the semester is devoted to

the study and application of critical methods. Student groups will discuss and present

various approaches to the practice of criticism to the class. Students have the option

of making their final paper a critical piece.

 

Sample Syllabus

 

 

 

CMST 283 INTRODUCTION TO RHETORICAL STUDIES

Dr. Ted Reilly | Office: 209, PAC | 457-5238

Hrs: MWF 10-11; 1-2 TTH 10-11; 1-2 & by Appt.

Ereilly@winona.edu

 

Texts:

Golden, J., Berquist, G., and R. Coleman (1996). The rhetoric of Western thought.

Dubuque: Kendall Hunt.

Foss, S. (1988). Rhetorical criticism . Prospect Heights. IL: Waveland.

** There will be occasional articles on reserve **

 

Course Description: This course is an introduction to rhetorical theory and criticism. We will examine rhetorical theory from its inception in ancient Greece, through the medieval, renascence, modern, contemporary, and postmodern periods. In tandem, we will explore basic method in rhetorical criticism, discovering useful ways to make theory applicable and relevant to interpreting present day discourse. These goals will be accomplished through the text and reserved readings, class discussion, and lots of application.

 

Late Policy: Late projects will be reduced up to 20% for each period late.

 

Attendance: The first three absences will not count against you. A 15 point deduction from your final grade will be taken for each absence thereafter. Come to class; otherwise you are putting yourself at a disadvantage for the exams, papers, quizzes, homework and presentations.

 

Academic Integrity: All work presented in this class should be no less than 100 percent your own. All violations are handled through the University Judicial System.

 

Writing/Speaking considerations: All work turned in for a grade are to be cleanly typed, double spaced. Use an accepted citation format for text and bibliography.

 

Grade Calculation: The course runs on a standard grade scale (95=A 85=B 75=C 65=D). Plus/minus are assigned to individual projects (plus grades= 68, 78, 88; minus grades= 72, 82, 92) but not to final grade. Your current course grade is always available to you. You can also keep track below.

Project           Value    Points           Your Grade

Exam 1             20%        200               _____

Exam 2             20%        200               _____

Exam 3             20%        200               _____

Project            10%        100               _____

Paper              15%        150               _____

Quiz/hmwrk  15%       150               _____

Total                100%       1000

This is a University Studies Arts and Sciences core course. It satisfies the humanities requirement. The outcomes listed in the University Studies Humanities section specify that the course provide activities and opportunities which

a. identify and understand specific elements and assumptions of a particular Humanities discipline.

b. understand how historical context, cultural values and gender influence perceptions and interpretations.

c. understand the role of critical analysis (e.g. aesthetic, historical, literary, philosophical, rhetorical ) in interpreting and evaluating expression of human experience.

 

 

Daily lessons, activities and assignments that address specific Humanities requirements are identified in the schedule.

 

 

CMST 283 TENTATIVE SCHEDULE SPRING 2000

JANUARY

W12 Course Introduction

F14 Defining Rhetoric (A, B)

M17 MLK Holiday

W19 Ancient Greece (A)

F21 Rhetoric in the Polis (A)

M24 The Sophists: Gorgias and Isocrates (A)

W26 Plato and Aristotle (A, B)

F28 Film: Nixon's 1952 Checker's Speech (A, C)

M31 Discussion (C)

 

FEBRUARY

W2 The Romans (A)

F4 Introduction to rhetorical criticism (C)

M7 Criticism/Christianity (A, C)

W9 Rhetoric and Christianity

F11 Cont'd

M14 Review ex #1

W16 Exam #1

F18 February Break Day

M21 Rhetorical Criticism (C)

W23 The Epistemologists (A)

F25 The Elocutionists (A)

M28 Group Work Preparation day

 

 

MARCH

W1 Rhetoric and Society: Court Elections documentary (A, B, C)

F3 Discussion

Spring Break

M20 Film: Reagan's Challenger Speech

W22 Criticism Projects (C)

F24 Criticism (C)

M27 Richard Weaver (A)

W29 Richard Weaver (A, C)

F31 Stephen Toulmin (A)

 

APRIL

M3  Stephen Toulmin (A)

W5  Review for Exam #2

F7  Exam #2

M10 Group preparation

W12 Group preparation and format

F14 Metaphoric  Criticism (C) 

M17 Kenneth Burke   (C)

W19 Situational Perspective (C) 

F21 Generic Criticism   (C)

M24 Generic Criticism   (C)

W26 Fantasy Theme Criticism  (C)

F28 Ideological Criticism (B, C)

 

MAY

M1  Feminist Criticism   (B, C)

W3  Fisher's Narrative Paradigm (C)  

F5  Postmodern Rhetoric (B, C)

M8  Postmodern Rhetorical Criticism (B, C)

W10 Critical Rhetoric (B)

F12 Review For Final Exam