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Title:Style in Bossuet's 1662 Lenten Sermons: A Method of Rhetorical Analysis
Author(s):Carlos, Claudia Maria
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Conley, Thomas M.
Department / Program:Speech Communication
Discipline:Speech Communication
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Speech Communication
Abstract:Rhetoricians have often considered the close connection between argumentation and figures of speech. One of the most perceptive accounts of this connection occurs in Chaim Perelman and Lucie Olbrechts-Tyteca's New Rhetoric (1958), in which the authors note the inseparability between style and logical argument, and outline specific rhetorical effects that various figures may have on an audience. Yet, despite the general acceptance by rhetorical scholars that style is more than "ornamental," few critics have attempted to consider the practical application of Perelman and Olbrechts-Tyteca's ideas with regard to actual texts. Drawing upon these ideas, as well as Kenneth Burke's discussion of the "psychology of form" in Counter-Statement (1931), this study offers close stylistic readings of six sermons by France's best known neoclassical orator, Jacques-Benigne Bossuet (1627--1704). Delivered during Lent before the court of Louis XIV, the sermons provide an especially rich case study for examining the argumentative potential of figures. The frequent use of devices, such as antithesis, vivid description, dialogismus, figures of indirection, and periodic structure, far from being a mere exercise in "empty form," suggests a consciously constructed argumentative strategy aimed at mediating a social and political context that could not have been more volatile.
Issue Date:2005
Description:277 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2005.
Other Identifier(s):(MiAaPQ)AAI3182231
Date Available in IDEALS:2015-09-28
Date Deposited:2005

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